Anyone who has read the “Cleveland Mining Incidents” series of books will know the injuries sustained underground could be horrific.
Bulmers directory of 1890 list the following staff
Miners’ Hospital – Messrs. Merryweather & Dunn, medical officers
Kellys directory of 1909 lists the following staff
Skelton Cottage Miners Hospital – John Thorner. LRCP Edin, Surgeon.
Skelton Cottage Miners Hospital – Frederick P Wigfield MB, Surgeon.
Skelton Cottage Miners Hospital – Miss Clara Baldwin, Matron.
The hospital built in 1883 is now a private residence.
I’m back, after a few technical gremlins with the site.
An old hand-painted sign for a local surveyors office can be found on the corner of Knights restaurant on Fountain Street
This little gem is hidden away in nettles at the top of Lawns Gill, the spring was the water supply for Skelton Castle. Old OS maps call it Spring Head.
The inscription reads :-
Leap from thy cavern’d mossy bed,
Hither thy prattling waters bring
Blandusia’s Muse shall crown thy head
And make thee too a sacred spring
Some attribute the words to John Hall Stevenson eccentric playboy owner of Skelton Castle, it is said the “Crazy Castle” in his “Crazy Tales” is Skelton. The are numerous tales of his exploits such as not getting out of bed when the wind was blowing from the east and racing roman chariots on Saltburn beach. His group of friends knows as the “Demoniacs” sounds like an interesting bunch with names such as Rev. “Panty” Lascelles and Zachary Moore
Other attribute the words directly to Stevensons friend and fellow “Demoniac” Laurence Sterne, author of Tristram Shandy in the 1760s. There are other Sterne links as just to the North East of Skelton Castle are areas known as Sterne’s Seat and Mount Shandy.
“Blandusia” is a corruption of Bandusia which was an ancient Roman spring
Apart from the very obvious Guibal Fanhouse closer investigation of the site reveals some more details.
Running due east from the fanhouse is a culvert with a metal pipe inside, it runs for nearly 200 feet and remains of a building can be seen on the surface where it ends.
Further east again in the undergrowth appears to be the base of a chimney (or the base of a privvy depending on your personal interpretation)
Slightly to the north of that a stone engine base can also be found hidden in the undergrowth.
The Tees Link footpath starts/ends here and connects the Cleveland Way with the Teesdale Way
In the stream are the footings for a rail bridge which connected Waterfall Ironstone mine to the branch for Skelton Park and Skelton Shaft mines.
A number of rails presumably originally from the bridge appear to have been reused to strengthen the bank on the right.
I can’t find an specifics about this one, but strongly suspect its by local favourite Andrew McKeown
Originally a corn mill, the building was converted for the manufacture of Roman Cement around 1811 (a hydraulic cement which can set underwater) , a drying kiln can be seem to the rear of the building.