P.S. Humber

PS Humber

Advertisement in the Doncaster Gazzette 11 August 1815 - fitted up in a most elegant and superb manner for the convenience of both Ladies and Gentleman and is under the management of Captain William Paddley, who is a sober, steady and well experienced Man in the said Navigation and by whom every Care and Attention will be paid to his passengers

P.S. Humber

P.S. Humber by kind permission of J.Smith

In 1826 twenty-four steamers from Hull plied along the coast during the summer months, London being the greatest distance to which they ran. About the year 1835 the number had increased to something like forty-four being in the Hamburg trade, one to Rotterdam, three to London, and the remainder principally coastwise. There are now above seventy steam boats trading to and from Hull, their collective cargo being about 15,000 tons with 7,230 horse power.

In 1829 Pigot's Trade Directory listed Sailing Packets leaving Hull for Barrow, Barton, Brigg, Garthorpe, Goxhill, Grimsby, Howden, Paul, Skitter, Stallingborough, Swinefleet, Weighton, Whitton, Wintringham and Whitgift. Steam Packets left for London, Barton, Brigg, Gainsborough, Goole, Grimsby, Lynn, Selby, Thorne, and Yarmouth.

In 1834 the railway line between Leeds and Selby opened to passengers but if you wanted to travel onward to Goole or Hull then you had to catch the paddle-steamers known as Steam Packets.

In 1835 a traveller from London wrote this about his journey

"Travellers in England, at the present day, have no reason to complain of high charges. The Gazelle steamer, in which vessel I left London, completed her voyage to Hull, in the teeth of a stiff breeze from the north-west, within thirty-six hours; the first cabin fare was ten shillings; the steward kind and attentive, the berths good, and provisions of the best description. It must be confessed that those of the after-cabin paid somewhat dear for the privilege of exclusiveness, for the wind swept along the raised quarter-deck with unrestrained force, the vessel being provided with painted green netting instead of bulwarks; nor was there any other protection than this frail substitute against the weather."

'The Annals' reported "By a return made to the house of commons it appears that in the year ending 5th January 1835 the number of vessels that entered inwards in the port of Hull was 1520, and the tonnage of the same 228,844; of these ships eight hundred and ninety-four belonged to the United Kingdom, sixteen to Russia, thirty-one to Sweden, forty-five to Norway, two hundred and seven to Denmark, sixty-four to Prussia, one hundred and fifty-six to Germany, seventy-two to Holland, twenty-one to Belgium, four to France, one to Spain, six to the Italian States and three to the United States of America."

1844 - 'The Annals' stated - "The number of steam-boat passengers from London to Hull amounts to 36,000 annually."

Hull Packet Boats

Hull Packet Boats 1833.

The Hull Ice Co.

Prior to 1899 Hull imported Ice from Norway. In 1891 Hull Ice Co. set up an installation on the Fish Dock, and since then the trade has expanded so enormously that in the year ending April 1928 , 167,524 tons of ice were turned out , the water used for the process during the same period was 41,933,00 gallons.

Paull - Near Hull

Ship Builder - Steemson

Built Paull in August 1807 ''Proserpine' Frigate 43 guns, twentyeight 18 pounders. 909 tons, 163 feet.

November 1808 ''Neptune' Brig, George Skelton Master, 171 tons, built for the Company of Cheesemongers, London launched at Paull. This cutter is intended to be equipped with 8 carriage guns.

November 1808 ''Owen Glendower' Built Paull, Frigate, twentysix 18 pounders, six 9 pounders, six 32 pounders carronades on her forecastle two 9 pounders and two 32 pounders carronades. 943 tons, 149 feet length, breadth 38 feet.

'HMS Anson'.- This the fourth ship to carry the name HMS Anson was a third rate, 74-gun, ship-of-the-line. Built by Steemson, of Paull near Hull, launched 11th May 1812, 175ft 6in long, 48ft 6in wide and of 1,742 tons. Used for harbour service from Jan-1831, then in 1844 used as a convict ship to Tasmania . Eventually broken up at Hobart 1851. (Link - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Anson_%281812%29)

12th May 1812 – ‘With great pleasure we announce the safe launch of the ‘Anson’, 74 gun ship, built by, Mr. Steemson, at Paull, which took place this evening at six o’clock, without the smallest accident whatever. The morning was exceedingly inauspicious, and the wind continued so very likely to prevent the wished for consummation, that high odds were offered it would not take place. The weather, however, moderated; and in the early part of the afternoon the event became certain, to the great joy of the many thousands who were assembled from all parts to witness the scene. Precisely at high water, she went down from the stocks in the most gallant stile, amidst the salutes of the men of war who were stationed in the Humber to receive her, the shouts of the multitude, and music, on shore. The assemblage of company to witness this (in this part of the country) naval spectacle, was such as may be anticipated. It is computed that from twelve to fifteen thousand persons were present. ’

‘On Wednesday; his Majesty’s sloops of war, ‘Mercurius’, Captain Renwick; ‘Tweed’, Captain Simons and ‘Ferrer’ arrived in Paull Roads, having on board Captain Fife, and 200 men, to take charge of the ‘Anson’, when launched, and proceed with her to Portsmouth, there to take on board her stores, and be fitted out for sea. The following are the dimensions of the ‘Anson’ – Extreme length, 206ft 6in, Length of keel 154 ft, Length of gun deck 176 ft, Extreme breadth 47 ft 6 in, Extreme height aft 52 ft 6in, Extreme height forward 45ft, Extreme height midships 39 ft, Depth of hold 21ft. Her measurement is 1741 17-94th tons; she is intended to carry 32 pounders on her gun deck, and 18 pounders on her upper desk, and is allowed by competent judges to be one of the best built vessels in the British navy.’

1838 - 'The Annals' mentions "- during the French war Paul was celebrated for its extensive dock-yard, in which ships of 74 guns were sometimes built"

Built Paull in 1859 'Ulysses' Sailing Smack (Official No. 27026) 39 tons. Registered Hull 1870, owned by John Huckstep, Hull. Registered Yarmouth 1880, owned by Alfred Sillett, Yarmouth.

Grimsby

'Anciently spelled Grimsbye is a borough, market , a sea-port town and parish, in the hundred of Bradley-Haverstoc and parts of Lindsey division, is 168 miles from London, 35 NE from Lincoln, and 16 SE from Hull.'

1828 - 'Pigot & Co. Directory

The Great Grimsby Ice Co.

In 1863 The Grimsby Ice Company was formed by leading smack-owners to import Norwegian ice,

Great Grimsby Ice Factory Trust

Further Information Link

September 1887. Grimsby Ice Company – 'The annual meeting of the Grimsby Ice Company was held on Wednesday in the Temperance Hall. ….. Every confidence was felt in the future prosperity of the company, which is now one of the largest smackowning and steam fish-carrying companies in the country. The meeting, which at times, was of a very lively character, lasted about five hours.'

March 1889. An Ice Manufactory – 'The manufacture of artificial ice on a large scale is about to be recommended by the Great Grimsby Ice Company and the Grimsby Co-operative Ice Company, who have just opened the premises vacated by the Great Northern Ice Company. After spending some £25,000 upon buildings, land, plant, etc. at Grimsby, the latter company was wound up a short time ago, and the property and plant were purchased for the two Grimsby companies for £4,000. Before the advent of the Great Northern Ice Company, the ice trade at Grimsby was confined to the import of natural ice from Norway, but there will be now two sources of supply, and the Linde British Refrigerating Company are also about to establish an ice factory at Grimsby.'

The Great Grimsby Ice Company Factory was opened on October 9 1901 as a joint initiative between the Grimsby Ice Company and the Grimsby Co-operative Ice Company. Its purpose was to replace Norway's ice to supply local ice to preserve fish on its journey from the deep sea fishing grounds .

The Grimsby Co-operative Ice Co. Ltd.Vessels

1872 'Helens' Barque built North Hylton 433 tons, official No. 65917.

The Great Grimsby Ice Co. Ltd. Vessels

1856 'Oryx' Barque built Dundee 270 tons, official No. 16170.

1856 'Orynx' Barque built Dundee 270 tons, official No.16170.

1860 'Eddystone' Barque built South Shields 400 tons, official No. 28591.

1862 'Athenian' Barque built Sunderland 328 tons, official No. 44478.

1865 'Alliance' Barque built Hylton 338 tons, official No. 51168.

1865 'H, Smethurst' Dandy built Grimsby 58 tons, official No. 47998.

1867 'Hamburg' Dandy built Hamburg 77 tons, official No. 65840.

1867 'Humber' Dandy built Elmshorn 79 tons, official No. 65816 (Foreign name 'Stor').

1868 'Blanche' Dandy built Hamburgh 78 tons, official No. 65843.

1868 'Clara' dandy built Grimsby 58 tons, official No. 60273.

1868 'Derwent' Barque built Southwick, Durham 372 tons, official No. 58108.

1868 'Gladstone' Dandy built Denmark 76 tons, official No. 65836. Originally named 'Eider'.

1868 'Lily' Dandy built Grimsby 59 tons, official No. 60271.

1869 'Heroine' Dandy built Grimsby 60 tons, official No. 63122.

1870 'Fortitude' Dandy built Burton Stather 64 tons, official No. 60210.

1870 'Motto' Ketch built Rye 61 tons, official No. 60209.

1870 'Orient' Ketch built Sandwich 59 tons, official No. 63117.

1870 'Peace' Ketch built Sandwich 70 tons, official No. 65208.

1870 'Unity' Ketch built Rye 64 tons, official No. 27988.

1871 'Enchantress' Ketch built Brixham 69 tons, official No. 63146.

1871 'Gleaner' Dandy built Grimsby 67 tons, official No. 65823.

1871 'Hannah' Ketch built Sandwich 65 tons, official No. 65817.

1871 'Livonia' Ketch built Brixham 68 tons, official No. 65811.

1871 'Oliver Cromwell' Dandy built Grimsby 66 tons, official No. 65829.

1871 'Tornado' Dandy built Grimsby 69 tons, official No. 65815.

1871 'Valiant' Dandy built Grimsby 65 tons, official No. 65827.

1871 'Warden Law' Barque built Pallion 460 tons, official No. 62624.

1872 'Enchanter' Ketch built Brixham 69 tons, official No. 67677.

1872 'Doncaster' Dandy built Grimsby 70 tons, official No. 67670.

1872 'John Robert' Dandy built Newhaven 63 tons, official No. 67664.

1872 'Will Dawn' Dandy built Grimsby 68 tons, official No. 67669.

1873 'Colin Rodger' Ketch built Dartmouth 70 tons, official No. 67719.

1873 'Australian' Ketch built Brixham 72 tons, official No. 67723.

1874 'Nathan Chapman' Ketch built Grimsby 69 tons, official No. 67747.

1875 'Annie Williamson' Ketch built Plymouth 76 tons, official No. 73211.

1875 'Atalanta' Ketch built Dartmouth 78 tons, official No. 73146.

1875 'Freedom' Ketch built Grimsby 69 tons, official No.73208.

1875 'Jumna' Ketch built Grimsby 73 tons, official No. 73214.

1875 'Oimara' Ketch built Grimsby 77 tons, official No. 73216.

1875 'Queen of the Fleet' Ketch built Grimsby 67 tons, official No. 67758.

1875 'Robin Hood' Ketch built Grimsby 72 tons, official No. 73212.

1875 'Suspicious' Ketch built Grimsby 73 tons, official No. 73209.

1876 'Caledonia' Ketch built Dartmouth 78 tons, official No. 75326.

1876 'Crusader' Dandy built Rye 75 tons, official No. 73181.

1876 'Harrington' Ketch built Grimsby 72 tons, official No. 73246.

1876 'Three Sisters' Ketch built Grimsby 75 tons, official No. 76669.

1877 'Agenoria' Ketch built Grimsby 72 tons, official No. 76678.

1877 'Agra' Ketch built Grimsby 79 tons, official No. 76688.

1877 'Anglia' Ketch built Dartmouth 80 tons, official No. 75370.

1877 'Black Watch' Dandy built Elmshorn 77 tons, official No. 78484.

1877 'Cheering'Dandy built Galmpton 69 tons, official No. 78336.

1877 'Cossack' Dandy built Elmshorn 78 tons, official No. 79066.

1877 'Lynet' Brig built Norway 230 tons, official No. 76681.

1877 'Edward Heneage' Dandy built Elmshorn 78 tons, official No. 79069.

1877 'George Washington' Ketch built Schlesvig 74 tons, official No. 76709.

1877 'Guide' Ketch built Hull 83 tons, official No. 78487.

1877 'Hearty Welcome' Dandy built Barton 76 tons, official No. 78335.

1877 'Henry Herbert' Dandy built Brixham 71 tons, official No. 78483.

1877 'Hibernia' Ketch built Dartmouth 83 tons, official No. 77502.

1877 'J. Murrell' Ketch built Elmshorn 77 tons, official No. 76696.

1877 'Little Samuel' Dandy built Brixham 77 tons, official No. 79072.

1877 'Uhlan' Dandy built Apenrade 89 tons, official No. 78482.

1877 'William' Dandy built Grimsby 74 tons, official No. 78500.

1877 'Young Eliza' Dandy built Brixham 73 tons, official No. 78498.

1878 'Beaver' Ketch built Dartmouth 79 tons, official No. 79017.

1878 'Daisy' Dandy built Apenrade 74 tons, official No. 79553.

1878 'Precurser' Iron Screw Steamer 50h.p. built Middlesborough 113 tons, official No. 79085.

Trial Trip – ‘ On Saturday one of the Great Grimsby Ice Company’s new steam cutters made a trial trip to Hull, under the command of Captain Brown. Leaving the Quay at 11 a.m., with a number of gentlemen interested in the fish trade on board, the vessel arrived at Hull about one. During the passage the ‘Precursor’ ran a measured mile in 4 min. 55 sec. Luncheon was served on board, and the party went ashore for a short time in Hull, leaving again at two o;clock. The trip was in every way satisfactory. The ‘Precursor’ sailed on Monday for the fishing grounds.'

1878 'Celerity' Iron Screw Steamer 50h.p. built Middlesborough 114 tons, official No. 79086.

1878 'Dispatch' Iron Screw Steamer 50h.p. built Middlesborough 114 tons, official No. 79087.

1878 'Harry Sinclair' Dandy built Barton 77 tons, official No. 79092.

1878 'Kitty' Ketch built Elmshorn 75 tons, official No. 79555.

1878 'Jonadab' Ketch built Hamburgh 74 tons, official No. 79099.

1878 'Lord Beaconsfield' Dandy built Grimsby 80 tons, official No. 79100.

1878 'Lord Salisbury' Dandy built Barton 77 tons, official No. 79559.

1878 'Scotia' Ketch built Dartmouth 87 tons, official No. 79038.

1878 'Selina' Dandy built Brixham 76 tons, official No. 79089.

1878 'Striver' Dandy built Barton 77 tons, official No. 79084.

1878 'Twilight' Ketch built Grimsby 77 tons, official No. 79564.

1879 'Velocity' Iron Screw Steamer 50h.p. built Middlesborough 102 tons, official No. 79575.

1879 'Ben Dearg' Ketch built Dartmouth 80 tons, official No. 73431.

1879 'Ben Ledi' Ketch built Dartmouth 77 tons, official No. 73435.

1879 'George Stevenson' Dandy built Grimsby 82 tons, official No. 79589.

1879 'Sir W. Armstrong' Dandy built Grimsby 83 tons, official No. 79567.

1880 'Exertion' Dandy built Grimsby 76 tons, official No. 83527.

1881 'Friends Goodwill' Ketch built Rye 72 tons, official No. 83562.

1881 'Fox' Dandy built Grimsby 76 tons, official No. 83541.

1882 'Boneta' Dandy built Newhaven 73 tons, official No. 86418.

1884 'Empress of India' Dandy built Grimsby 81 tons, official No. 90358.

1885 'Martha Somerville' Ketch built Grimsby 79 tons, official No. 91544.

1886 'Beatrice Forester' Ketch built Brixham 84 tons, official No. 93921.

1888 'G.I.C.' Ketch built Grimsby 85 tons, official No. 94083.

Cross-river ferries.


These can be anything from a simple rowing boat to a flat bottomed type of punt capable of transporting carriages or in more recent times cars.

The picture on the right shows the ferry at Booth Ferry.

Ferries on the Humber had much larger vessels.


Winteringham to Brough

Barton to Brough

Barton to Hessle

On the 24th May 1300 King Edward I came to Hull by way of Barton and Hessle and then on to Beverley. His retinue occupied eleven vessels and and took two days at a cost of thirteen shillings paid to Galfrid de Seleby.

November 1852 – ‘Barton and Hessle Ferries. On Sunday afternoon Hylton’s Royal Menagerie, in 11 caravans, together with horses and the company, safely debarked at Barton waterside, from Hessle, at two different times, in four hours, en route to Gainsborough mart. The admirable arrangements made by the York and North Midland Railway Company have rendered this ferry decidedly the most safe and convenient for the transit of cattle, horses, and vehicles across the Humber.’

South Ferriby to North Ferriby

Barton to Hull

"Barton ferry is distant from Hull 5 miles 216 yards, from Barrow ferry 1 mile 1650 yards."

In 1291 a ferry was established between Hull and Barton. In 1312 the rent paid for this ferry was 6s 8d. In 1320 its value was 40 shillings, in 1356 it was leased for £535. 0 s. 4 d., in 1831 a yearly rent of £800., then the ferry was sold to the railway company.

Barton

"Edward 1, in the course of progress to the North, visited Hull in the year 1300. He crossed the Humber, from Barton to Hessle, on the 26th of May, and the passage of the Royal party across the ferry appears to have occupied two days; the sum of 13s having been paid for the wages of Galfid de Seleby and other sailors,with eleven barges and boats employed during that time."

"In 1316, Robert de Sandal being Warden of the town, the King, at the request of the burgesses, and after an inquistition made, was pleased to establish a ferry to and from Barton in Lincolnshire, to bring and carry over men, horses, beasts,&c, at the rate of one halfpenny for every single person; a penny for every horseman; and twopence for every cart going across with two horses. This grant to the “Wardens and Burgesses, their heirs and successors for ever,” was made at Lincoln on the 28th of August, in the aforesaid year. In 1320, the value of this ferry was 40s per annum. In 1356 it was leased at the yearly rent of £535.0s.4d; and in 1831 at a yearly rent of £800. The ferry now belongs to the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway Company."

"In 1464, king Edward the 4th crossed the water from Barton to Hull, being the engaged in the disputes with his competitor Henry."

"22nd January 1656 - A lease was made for 11 years between the mayor and corporation of Hull, and Thomas Bamburgh, of the 'South Ferry' at a rate of £11."

In 1734 Daniel Defoe wrote about his journey from Barton to Hull - A little farther within Humber is Barton, a Town noted for nothing that I know of but an ill-favoured dangerous passage, or ferry, over the Humber to Hull, where in an open Boat, in which we had about fifteen Horses and ten Cows, mingled with about fifteen or eighteen Passengers, called Christians; we were about four Hours tossed about on the Humber, before we could get into the Harbour at Hull; whether I was Sea Sick or not is not worth Notice, but we were all sick of the Passage, any one may suppose, and particulatly I was so uneasy at it, that I chose to go round by York, rather than return to Barton, at least for a Time.

"On the 29th of October 1778, by letters patent from the crown, the Barton ferry was granted to Frances Pelham and Mary Pelham, of Whitehall, spinsters on payment of a fine of £80, and a reserved rent of £22 2s., for a reversionary term of years from 21st of March, 1792, the period of the expiration of a former lease granted to them. In this grant the ferry is descibed nearly in the same words as noted in the manorial survey of Cromwell's time. In the year 1792 the Misses Pelham disposed of their term in the ferry, to George Uppleby, Esq., of Barrow."

On the 4th July 1798 a travelling clergyman wrote the following - At eleven o'clock set sail in the Hull packet from Barton. The vessel large and commodious, with two cabins. The fare for each person only sixpence, and the company in number was about fifty. As the day was fair with a light breeze, almost everybody chose to be on deck, and the scene was delightul. The Thames is but a narrow rivulet, if compared to the Humber. The passage lasted about an hour and was truly agreeable.

"In 1799 Mr. Uppleby sold his interest in the Barton ferry for £2920 to William Osborn Esq., on behalf of the corporation of Hull, who there-upon became proprietors of both the Hull and Barton ferries, which soon exhibited the effects of monopoly. after the then existing lease of the Barton ferry fell into the hands of the Hull corporation, they let it to the Barton coach proprietors from year to year. A great event occured soon after, which effected a complete revolution in the passage of the Humber - the introduction of steam.The subsequent contentions which arose between the leasees and the public may be found narrated in the various newspapers and pamphlets of the day.

1815 - lease by the crown to the mayor and burgesses of Hull.

Barton Ferry Boat House

1st July, 1821 - From the mayor to Messrs. Thos. Boyce and Co., proprietors of coaches between Hull and London, for 12 1/2 years, rent £800, from Hull to Barton, and from Barton to Hull and Hessle.

August 12th 1835 - The Barton Ferry Company, consisted of thirteen indiviuals representing thirty-eight shares of £50 each.

September 30th 1837 - The company was dissolved and Mr. Walkden became the purchaser of the steamboats &c, at £2600, and owner of the ferries.

3rd April 1840 - Mr. Thos. Walkden died, and the ferries devolved to his daughter, Miss Ann Walkden. She made an incomplete sale to Mr.Thos. Clapson, but the ferry legally was hers until she became a bankrupt in 1851. A great number of gentlemen, compassionating her misfortune, raised by subscription £814, which they invested in the purchase of a government annuity of £60 for her life.

After Miss Walkden's bankruptcy the assignees worked the ferry until the affairs were wound up; the the North-Eastern Railway Company became the owners of the ferry, and they were succeeded in 1856 by Messrs. Hill, Stamp, and Drust, the present proprietors."

1791

The Time when the Ferry Boats Sail from Hull for Barton

At New and Full moon they go off at 3 o’clock,

1st Day after ---- ---- 4 o’clock

2nd Day after ---- ---- 5 o’clock

3rd Day after ---- ---- 6 o’clock

4th Day after ---- ---- 7 o’clock

5th Day after ---- ---- 8 o’clock

6th Day after ---- ---- 9 o’clock

At the Two Quarter Days they go off at 9 o’clock

1st Day after ---- ---- 10 o’clock

2nd Day after ---- ---- 11 o’clock

3rd Day after ---- ---- 12 o’clock

4th Day after ---- ---- 1 o’clock

5th Day after ---- ---- 2 o’clock

6th Day after ---- ---- 3 o’clock

If the wind be West or SouthWest, the Boats will go off at half an hour before the time above-mentioned.

The boats go off from Barton to Hull, two hours after their arrival at Barton.

“Mail, when sent by Barton route, go by mail steam packet to Hessle, less than a mile across, whence they are instantly conveyed by a mail on land to Hull: when sent by New Holland, go thither from Brigg by a light cart, and then across the Humber to Hull, and the passage is one mile more by water, and a quarter or half more by land, than the Barton route.

A horse-boat conveys cattle and carriages every day coming with the tide. A market sloop plies on market-days when the morning tide favours. Barton people can go to Hull for 1d; Hull people to Barton and back for 2d; Strangers 4d. This is a privilege yet in force from ancient ferry charters. There is one steam packet to and from Hull; it leaves Hull at 7 o'clock returns from Barton at 8; leaves Hull again at 12, returns at 2; leaves a third time at 4, and starts from Barton again at half-past 6. Some years ago, before the packet was established, a hoy sailed once a day; of course the packet has benefitted the public. The fares are 6d. And 1s.; the accomodation appeared to us not so good by any means as such a continual transit of passengers should obtain. There is an export of corn, malt, bricks, tiles, starch and an import of coals.”

New Holland to Hull


Victoria Pier Hull circa 1900 - landing place for ferries and paddle steamers.

For further details about Victoria Pier use the following link http://www.subbrit.org.uk/sb-sites/stations/h/hull_corporation_pier/index.shtml

Lincoln Castle - built 1940 in Glasgow a steel steam paddle ship length 199.7ft, 33.1ft beam with a draft of 8.8ft. Built by A.& J. Inglis.

Youtube Videos

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WatPPKbSgXU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DGC9CxADiSQ

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zNCq_5z9M4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dpq-bAe78ok

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bWcbP0ay8Gw


Wingfield Castle - built 1934 of steel by W.Gray & Co. of West Hartlepool having a length of 199.9ft, beam of 33.1ft and a draft of 7.7 ft

As well as the above further Hull - New Holland ferries included Royal Albion, Magna Carta II, Manchester III, Grimsby II, Cleethorpes, Brocklesby, Killingholme, Mermaid and Tattershall Castle.

Humber Tunnel

The Bill for the making of the tunnel was passed by the House of Commons Committee on 22nd May 1873, and on 3rd July 1873 it came before a Committee of the House of Lords. The Bill was again supported by practically every interest in Hull, but a great change had come over the situation in the interval between the passing of the Bill by the Commons and its arrival in the Lords, for whereas in the Lower House the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway and the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire had been in favour of the Bill, they had been induced by the North Eastern Railway in the interval to take sides against it. The Committee then considered their decision and the chairman announced: “The committee have resolved that it is not expedient to proceed further with the Bill.” However that may be, the decision was a regrettable one for Hull. It fixed the North Eastern Railway’s monopoly over Hull still more firmly.

May 1913 – Two schemes are in the air. One of them, which was rejected by the House of Lords in 1873, was to have crossed the river to the west of Hull from Hessle to Barton; the other is a project for constructing a tunnel east of Hull, from Paull or Marfleet to the Lincolnshire side, with a short line connecting the railway at Goxhill. The latter scheme has been submitted to the Hull Corporation, and it is stated that a bill will be promoted in its favour in Parliament in the autumn.

March 1923 – ‘Lindsey County Council’s Meeting. Consideration was given to a resolution from the Hull Chamber of Commerce and Shipping asking for support for the Humber Tunnel scheme. Ald. Bellwood moved that the matter be referred to the Highways Committee for thorough consideration – Mr. Forrester said although he regarded any increased facilities for transit of goods or any improved method of travelling as steps in the progress of civilisation, he should like at the present time to most strenuously oppose that Council making any contribution towards the cost of it, not that he disapproved of the making of the tunnel, but simply because they could not afford it.’

June 1923 – ‘In regard to the Humber Tunnel was that there had been a meeting of the Committee appointed in connection with the Chamber of Commerce, of which Mr. E. Dumoulin was chairman. The name of an eminent engineer was mentioned, and it was decided that he should be asked to prepare a report on the potential value of a tunnel from the business point of view. This engineer has been closely associated with dock and railway affairs. The Lord Mayor, who is on the Committee and, keenly interested in the proposal, remarked that the project was a vast one and could not be decided ultimately in Hull.’

February 1934 –Mr. Louis Smith, M.P. in Parliament – ‘Despite the increased cost I believe, it would command general support, and that the Government would give financial assistance. It would, of course, obviate the navigation difficulty raised by a bridge. I would like to see the tunnel proposal put forward as a definite scheme by the responsible authorities. I know there is a difference of about a million pounds between the tunnel and the bridge, £1,750.000 for the bridge and £2,500,000 to £3,000,000 for the tunnel, but I think the extra expenditure would be worth while. The present system of transport is antediluvian.’

Humber Hovercraft

The Humber Hovercraft, named Mercury and run by Hover Marine, linking Hull and Grimsby made its final trip in October 1969 - just eight months after taking to the river. The service was badly hit by mechanical difficulties, unavoidable bad weather and one or two mishaps manoeuvring at Grimsby Dock.

Humber Bridge

The Humber Bridge, is a 7,280 ft (2,220-metre) single-span suspension bridge, which opened to traffic on 24 June 1981. It spans the Humber between Hessle on the north bank and Barton-upon-Humber on the south bank , connecting the East Riding of Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire.

Further Information Link


River Hull

"The river Hull is navigable to Frodingham Bridge, several miles above Beverley; and thence to Great Driffield by means of a canal. Another canal extends from this river to Leven, a length of about three miles."

The Archbishop of York, Lord of the town of Beverley, and owner of the soil on both sides of the river Hull, took tolls from boats and other small vessels plying the river. In 1213 the Archbishop’s rights upon the river at the town of Hull, was to have a free passage along its midstream, of the breadth of 24 feet. At that time the navigation was restricted to boats and small craft. But though the intervention of the Archbishop Walter Gifford, it was made navigable for ships in the year 1269. In that year an arrangement was made by the same prelate with the Lady Johanna de Stuteville, and Saer de Sutton, in which the last named parties agreed to remove the wears and fences which they had in the river for their fisheries, so as to leave a certain breadth of the river free and unobstructed, that ships as well as boats might pass without interruption between the Humber and the town of Beverley, in consideration of an annual rent of six marks, to be paid to them by the Archbishop, which sum the burgesses of Beverley agreed to reimburse.

Drypool Ferry

In 1307 Sir John de Sutton Knight, then Lord of the Manor of Sutton was given the rights to run a ferry at Drypool.

"The freedom of passage conferred upon the burgesses by their charter, caused them to establish a ferry across the Hull; but Sir John de Sutton, Knt., then lord of the manor of Sutton, and owner of the lands on the Holderness side of the river, where the ferry lay, claimed, by descent from his ancestors, the exclusive right of passage across that river at Drypool, as appurtenant to his lands there. Having procured a writ of ad quod damnum to be directed to the Sheriff of Yorkshire, an inquisition was taken thereof in 1307, when the jurors recognised the complainant’s right to the ferry."

Wincolmlee

"On the 8th of December 1848, a dreadful catastrophe occurred here a little before 6 o’clock in the morning, which was fatal to a greater number of human lives than any other event which had occurred in this town for many years. A boat plying the Hull, at the ferry called “Brewhouse Wrack” between Groves and Wincolmlee, overturned and precipitated about thirty people into the water. A ferry had been established there many years, and since the erection of cotton mills on both sides, a large number of persons crossed and recrossed the river daily. Those on board, in this instance, were both sexes and various ages – all being workpeople of the Kingston Cotton Mills. The accident was created by some of those on board moving to one side of the vessel, which caused it to slant over. Upon this, a move to the opposite side was instinctively, though foolishly made, and then the boat at once capsized in the middle of the river. The scene which followed baffles all description. The men and lads plunged and struggled to reach the shore, and the females, void of self possession, uttered shreiks which were heard at long distances in every direction. Many embraced each other, and speedily sank, and after a few moments nothing was heard but a few splashes, which only made the silence more awful. …..Fourteen persons were drowned – twelve of whom were females."

Stone Ferry

Wawne Ferry

The Archbishop of York had a ferry across the river Hull in the mid 12th century. In 1584 Lancelot Alford leased the crossing and by the 20th century there was a floating bridge controlled by chains that was used by carts and horses and a punt for foot passengers. Wawne ferry ceased to be operated about 1947.The last ferryman was Jack Clarkson who worked from 1934 to its closure with charges of 1 penny for foot passengers, 2 pennies for cyclists to 1 shilling for a car.

Picture and details by kind permission of Mr. Martin Limon.

Holderness Hunt on Wawne Ferry

'The ferry had been operating for 800 years (for the first half of its history it had been owned by the monks of Meaux Abbey near Wawne). By the 20th century it was operated from the Windham Arms on the Wawne side of the River Hull. From 1911 the pub and the ferry was owned by Donald Brewer and he continued to operate it with help from others (including Jack Clarkson) until the early 1940s. He then transferred ownership to his nephew Harold Walker on May 1st 1944 (the conveyance is in the Registry of Deeds at Beverley). Walker then sold the pub, the ferry rights and 44 acres of land to Moors and Robson's Brewery (Hull) on the 5th July 1946. The sale was finalised in a conveyance dated 19th August 1946. It was at this point (Aug 1946) that the ferry ceased to operate. We know this because Ronald Dixon, the tenant of Thearne Hall and Chairman of Woodmansey Parish Council, wrote about the closure in the Woodmansey Parish Council minutes of 18th December 1946 (these are in the East Riding Archive). Dixon was a keen amateur historian and realised that the end of a ferry that had been operating for 800 years was a significant event. He tells us in the minutes that he had written to Moors and Robsons Brewery to complain but had been told that the ferry boat was not safe to use and that the cost of repairing or replacing it was too excessive in view of the revenue it would generate. While Dixon admitted "there was no known law to force a ferry service" he continued to insist that Wawne Ferry was a public ferry and "could not be closed at the will of the man who owned the boat". Dixon campaigned to get the ferry re-opened but despite an investigation by East Riding Council during 1947 the ferry remained closed. A letter from the council to Moors and Robson's in January 1948 demanding that the "ferry service should be resumed at an early date" did not produce the desired result.'

For further reading see Martin Limon's book 'Tales from the East Riding' and his other books by History Press.

Beverley Beck



River Hull to Leven Canal

In 1801 a canal was constructed between Leven Bridge and the River Hull which enabled the carriage of goods, wares and merchandise to Hull as well as the improvment of land drainage for the area.

Canal from Market Weighton to the River Humber

As with the Hull - Leven canal this canal also helped both as water transport and land drainage serving the villages of " Market Weighton, Blacktoft, Everingham, Harsewell, Seaton, Ross, Holme upon Spalding-moor, Froggathorpe, Gribthorpe, Spaldington, Burnsea, Hasholm, Wholsea, North Cliffe, South Cliffe, Hothham, Houghton, Bromfleet, Faxfleet, Shipton, Sancton and Walling Fenn". " Tolls to be taken not to exceed 4s. for every ton of grocery goods, wares and merchandises; 2s. for every caldron of coals; 1s. 6d. for every caldron of lime; 1s for every ton of stone; 6d. for every ton of manure of all sorts; 2s. for every 1000 of tiles; 1s. for every 1000 bricks; and 8d. for every pack of wool, containing 16 stone to each pack; to be paid in proportion of the distance; the whole being payable from the Humber to Market Weighton".

The canal ceased to be used commercially in 1958 and closed in 1971 but is still used by pleasure craft.

River Ancholme

The Ancholme navigation commences from the river Humber at Ferriby Sluice, South Ferriby and runs south to Brigg and joins the Caister Canal. Three acts of Parliament were passed to enlarge the canal and the draining of the surrounding land were passed in 1767, 1802 and 1825. The canal, as with others in the region, was used to convey coal, bricks and tiles, stone, groceries, wheat, rye, beans, peas or lentils, barley, malt and oats.

Louth Canal

As Louth started to fall into decline, plans were made for the construction of a canal in 1765. The canal built by 1770 at a cost of £28,000 allowed sea-going vessels to navigate to Louth exporting wool and corn and importing coal and timber. With the arrival of the railways, canal trade fell into decline and eventually closed for trade in 1924.

Further reading on humber ferries visit http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=66785

If you have any pictures or further information please email me.


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