History and heritage

Scarborough bristles with history, from the Castle, built in the 1100s on the site of a Roman signal station, to the unique circular Rotunda Museum, one on the world's oldest purpose-built museums. The town also plays host to a series of unique events throughout the year...


On Shrove Tuesday each year, look out for locals young and old skipping on the foreshore, which is closed to traffic for the afternoon. No one's entirely clear why it happens, but one thing's for certain - you won't see anything like it anywhere else.

The Pancake Bell

Another Shrove Tuesday custom - the ringing of the pancake bell, once practised by the wives of the town to alert men in the fields that they were about to start cooking pancakes at the beginning of Lent signals the start of skipping and pancake races in the town.

Fishermen v Firemen football

Boxing Day is the best day of the Christmas holidays for many Scarborians - another event unique to the town. The seafront is packed as the annual raft race across the harbor gets under way, a charity mile of pennies is laid, bands play, and everyone gets ready for the big match. Firemen (as in those who stoked the fires aboard the boats, not firefighters) and fishermen don fancy dress and battle on the beach for local charities. The charity was originally started to help the widows and orphans of five Scarborough fishermen drowned at sea aboard the Evelyn and Maud in 1893.