• LOCATION 29 | Essential Whitby: A Guide to the Town’s Legends, Treasures and Main Sites

    Swing Bridge

    Swing Bridge on Whitby audio tour Essential Whitby: A Guide to the Town’s Legends, Treasures and Main Sites

    Stop here on the bridge.

    The bridge dates from 1909 although we believe some form of bridge has existed here for close to 1000 years.

    The swing bridge is regularly opened for harbour traffic and when this happens you'll hear a bell. Some people are slightly perplexed by this practice, when they hear a bell ringing and see lots of locals begin to run. They're running of course to get over the bridge before it opens.

    To your left you've no doubt spotted the polar bear. This is another tale involving William Scorebsy Snr who brought a polar bear cub back from the Arctic.

    He trained the polar bear on the journey home with seal meat and when he arrived back here in Whitby the bear scarpered. It was located just outside of town and before the order was given to shoot - Scoresby himself arrived and was able to lead the bear away with a lead. It was perhaps the first instance of a tamed polar bear.

    When you're ready, cross the bridge and take the first right down Grape Lane.

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Essential Whitby: A Guide to the Town’s Legends, Treasures and Main Sites