"Cleethorpes on a Sunny Bank Holiday!" Top 5 Page for this destination Cleethorpes by suvanki

Cleethorpes Travel Guide: 44 reviews and 99 photos


I'd visited Cleethorpes a few times during my childhood, for day trips, but didn't have any particular memories of it, except that the sea always seemed to be 'miles away'
So, with the rare promise of a Sunny August Bank Holiday, we headed to this Humberside resort, albeit with low expectations. We were expecting a run down, tacky 'chavtastic' place.

Yes, there are Tat shops, amusement arcades, Fast Food outlets and tattoo parlours aplenty, but.....
It appears that some money has been put into this town, with a pleasant promenade, parks and gardens etc.
The beach was clean, and the promenade wasn't too litter strewn.

While Cleethorpes in no way has the old charm and scenery of other east coast resorts, such as Robin Hoods' Bay, Whitby, Southwold or Aldeburgh, I was pleasantly surprised, and will certainly return again - though I doubt that the weather will be as good ;-0

Leaving Cleethorpes Via the road past the Leisure Centre, I realised that there was even more of the town that we hadn't seen - The Princess Diana park, with the statue of the boy with the welly (Welly as in Wellington boot,and not a typo,if you were imagining a copy of the famous statue in Brussels ;-) the Leisure Centre, miniature railway, Jungle Zoo, Pleasure Island Amusement Park, the retail park, Cinema etc etc..

Cleethorpes comes from Clee, the old word for clay,although it could have been Clai, meaning chalk, as this area was important for chalk and lime. Thorpes is old English/Norse for village(s)

We were puzzled about the origins of Cleethorpes - it doesn't have a harbour, so doubted that it began as a fishing port, nor is it suitable for docking etc, so guessed that it must have began as a market town or as a Victorian resort with the railway line terminating here.

Well. I now know that Cleethorpes DID start off as a fishing village, where the locals were involved with oyster fishing.

In the 1820's it developed as a Holiday resort, where people came to bathe and 'enjoy the healthy waters'! The railway, ensured easy access from the northern Industrial areas, Grand Hotels were built, along with the pier, that opened in 1873.

Wandering onto the town streets, we came across Market Street, which had some interesting architecture. We also found some old cottages, and Art Deco style buildings. The old Post Office was quite impressive.

Quirky Cleethorpes

Cleethorpes isn't a seaside resort though, however much it may resemble one, as the town sits on the Humber Estuary, which joins the North Sea.

Locals call the town and inhabitants Meggies, though it is uncertain as to why..... There are a few theories.......

1) - Isaacs Hill was once known as Megs Island, when it was a fishing hamlet. As in that true Cockneys are those East Enders born within the sound of the Bow Bells, true Meggies are those born on or above the hill. There were at one time two maternity hospitals - St Hugh's, which was ON the hill and Croft Baker on Mill Road, which was ABOVE the hill, so the majority born at the time in Cleethorpes would have claim to be a Meggie.

2) A meggie was the local name for the tram fare from Grimsby to Cleethorpes

3) Captain HW Meggitt, was the local commandant of the 1st Volunteer Battalion of the Lincolnshire Regiment. The volunteers used the term Meggies, to avoid being confused with the "Yellowbellies" from the Lincolnshire Fens.
Now, Yellow Bellies, before you ask .......... CLICK HERE to find out the possible origins of this nick name.

Cleethorpes has a Football (soccer) stadium, Blundell Park, that seats just under 10,000.
It is the Home ground of Grimsby Town FC, One of the very few football clubs not to have their stadium in their home town/city.
Grimsby, aka The Mariners have recently been relegated to non-league football, but at one time had one of the best known and respected Football Managers - Bill Shankley 1951-53, who went on to manage Liverpool FC. Twenty years later 71-73 Laurie McMenemy, was another well known name in Soccer management, who managed Grimsby Town.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Plenty to see and do on a sunny or even rainy day
  • Cons:The 'sea' disappears for a few hours.
  • In a nutshell:Far better than I expected it to be!
  • Last visit to Cleethorpes: Aug 2013
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (12)

Comments (4)

  • nhcram's Profile Photo
    Aug 30, 2013 at 3:25 PM

    Hi Sue, nice write up about a good old fashioned seaside place. Hope the smutty rock stayed there!

    • suvanki's Profile Photo
      Aug 30, 2013 at 3:35 PM

      Hi! Thanks for visiting my Cleethorpes page and for Your kind comment ( and ratings?) Much Appreciated!
      Yup! We didn't purchase ' smutty rock' ;-)

  • Nemorino's Profile Photo
    Aug 30, 2013 at 1:17 PM

    Hi Sue, I've enjoyed reading your tips on this Humberside resort. We took the ferry to Hull once (years ago) so I suppose I can claim to have seen the general area. Also we went to Robin Hoods Bay on that trip.

    • suvanki's Profile Photo
      Aug 30, 2013 at 3:05 PM

      Hi Don! Thanks for visiting my Cleethorpes page ( and for ratings )? Much appreciated! Glad that you got to see Robin Hood's Bay - One of my favourite seaside resorts, but I was pleasantly surprised with Cleethorpes.

  • CatherineReichardt's Profile Photo
    Aug 27, 2013 at 10:01 AM

    YEY!!! Cleethorpes or bust! I've long wanted to visit Whitby- and also Bridlington (just to see whetehr it's really as 'bracing' as legend would have it - so I think that if and when I get aorund to this, Cleethorpes must also feature. I have to say that I didn't realise that it was as close to Grimsby ...

    • suvanki's Profile Photo
      Aug 27, 2013 at 12:56 PM

      ;-) if you get to the Whitby area - Robin Hoods' Bay is a Must See! I've not been to Brid for a long time, but I hear from Mr B ( whose Sister has some property there, where he used to stay regularly, that it's had some improvements - though I hear the EVIL seagulls still rule the town.
      Yes, I hadn't realised how close Cleethorpes and Grimsby were until Yesterday.
      Thanks for checking outta page (and for the ratings?) Much Appreciated!
      Still got more to add yet ;-)

    • suvanki's Profile Photo
      Aug 27, 2013 at 12:57 PM

      Oh and if you do get to the East Coast one day, us Ooop Northers will no doubt hold a party errrr VT meet for you!

  • isolatedpawn's Profile Photo
    Aug 27, 2013 at 6:27 AM

    nice view


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