Recently we visited Marsden, a village on the coast near South Shields which used to be a thriving pit village. The hustle and bustle has gone now but it is a lovely place to visit for an afternoon. The beach there is gorgeous, a stretch of sand you can walk along. To reach it you need to climb down very steep stairs on the cliff edge, listening to the raucous calls of nesting gulls nestled in the cliff side above you. The cliff itself is made from Magnesian limestone but also on the beach is Marsden rock, a large rock made of limestone. Inside it there are plenty of caves and it is easy to explore at low tide. You can easily imagine smugglers working on this beach, dragging the boxes into caves on the shore to hide from the customs.
The rock used to be much larger, at one point it had an arch underneath it and looked like a bridge. Victorians used to come to Marsden to climb the rock and they even had a choir singing on top of it. That must have been a spectacular sight. Sadly erosion broke the rock into two stacks, the large stack which you can see in the photo and a smaller stack which had to be demolished because it was unsafe. It is still a home for sea birds aplenty and you can see cormorants and gulls perched on top, ready to swoop into the sea to catch fish.
On the beach itself you will find Marsden Grotto, a pub which extends back into a cave in the cliff. It has quite a history and there are tales of ghosts haunting it. It is really interesting inside and you can stop there for a meal. It also has a lift up to the top of the cliff if you can’t face climbing up the steep stairs.
Linking up with the Alphabet Photography Project on PODCast, why not pop over and see what everyone else has photographed.