The Scarborough News

Branching out with a woodland beach den


As is often the case, my Scarboroug­h Tales are based on a true event with a measure of artistic licence. I’ve lived and walked at North Bay for more than 25 years and never seen anything like this before.

Granny and Grandpops were looking after Noah.

“At last the sun is shining again. What shall we do? Shall we go to the woods or shall we go to the beach? What shall we do?”

Noah wondered: “The woods! No. The beach! Oh I don’t know.”

Grandpops had a twinkle in his eye. He’d been on the phone to somebody. He said: “I have a surprise for you Noah. Let’s go to both, the woods and the beach at the same time!”

Noah looked puzzled. The woods and the beach at the same time?

The beach was nearby. Noah had his usual sandy bag of beach toys: buckets, spades, nets, a football, a tennis ball, a frisbee, a small kite, a cricket bat, some badminton stuff.

Noah was thinking about the sandcastle he was going to build. As they turned the corner at the Sands developmen­t his eyes opened wide: “What’s this? What’s all this stuff on the beach?”

It was amazing. Strong winds and heavy rain for a few days had caused branches from the woods to be washed down by the flooding sea-cut into the sea. The tide had strewn them on the beach. Jetsam!

There was usually some after a storm, but never as much as this. And there were huge piles of seaweed washed ashore.

And there were dens. People had been building their woodland dens on the beach. It was amazing. Noah said:

“Let’s make a den Grandpops! Yippee!”

They were near the chalets. They built a den. It was magnificen­t, like a teepee. What great fun, playing in the woods on the beach.

“Just going to look at all the dens,” said Noah. Off he went.

The grandparen­ts got ready for a picnic lunch. Five minutes later, Granny said: ”Where’s Noah?” She couldn’t see him on the beach. Grandpops couldn’t see him either. Oh no! Their hearts sank. Where’s Noah? A lost child at the beach. Very worrying.

They started to look for him, shouting his name. Panicking. “What’s the matter?” a voice called out. It was Noah. He wasn’t lost, he was sitting in the den they had made waiting for his lunch. What a relief for the grandparen­ts.

Noah said: “You were right Grandpops. Thank you for bringing me to the woods and the beach at the same time. What a great day! Can I have my picnic in the den please?” And he did.

After a full afternoon of fun: playing in the den, playing on the beach with his toys, in the rock pools, waving at the North Bay Railway trains and getting an ice cream, it was time to go home. His grandparen­ts were tired out. Another great day at North Bay, Scarboroug­h.

And will that ever happen again? Branches from the woods coming down the seacut. The ever changing tide picking it up, carrying it along by the Sea Life Centre wall and throwing branches on the beach as if they were light as a feather. Imagine playing wood games on the beach. What a memorable day.

A lost child on the beach is very worrying. I remember a panic we had when we thought our young daughter was missing at Filey beach. Let’s all stay safe.

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