From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Redcar (33306974732).jpg
Redcar's seafront
Redcar is located in North Yorkshire
Location within North Yorkshire
Population37,073 [1]
OS grid referenceNZ601252
• London220 mi (350 km) SSE
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townREDCAR
Postcode districtTS10
Dialling code01642
AmbulanceNorth East
UK Parliament
List of places
54°37′05″N 1°04′08″W / 54.618°N 1.069°W / 54.618; -1.069Coordinates: 54°37′05″N 1°04′08″W / 54.618°N 1.069°W / 54.618; -1.069

Redcar is a seaside town on the Yorkshire Coast in the Redcar and Cleveland unitary authority in the county of North Yorkshire, England. It is located 7 miles (11 km) east of Middlesbrough.

The Teesside built-up area's Redcar subdivision had a population of 37,073 at the 2011 Census.[1] The town is made up of Coatham, Dormanstown, Kirkleatham, Newcomen, West Dyke, Wheatlands and Zetland.[2]

It gained a town charter in 1922, from then until 1968 it was governed by the municipal borough of Redcar. Since the abolition of County Borough of Teesside, which existed from 1968 until 1974, the town has been unparished.[3]


Coatham Sands


Redcar occupies a low-lying site by the sea; the second element of its name is from Old Norse kjarr, meaning 'marsh', and the first may be either Old English (Anglo-Saxon) rēad meaning 'red' or OE hrēod 'reed'.[4][5] The town originated as a fishing hamlet in the 14th century, trading with the larger adjacent hamlet of Coatham.[5] Until the mid-19th century it was within the parish of Marske-by-the-Sea – mentioned in the Domesday book.

Zetland lifeboat[edit]

Numerous ships have foundered off the Redcar coastline and many of their wrecks still exist.[6] The Zetland is the world's oldest surviving lifeboat. It was built by Henry Greathead of South Shields and is housed in a volunteer-led sea-front museum.[7] The lifeboat was first stationed at Redcar in 1802.[8][9]

Victorian Era[edit]

As seaside holidays became fashionable in the early 19th century, Redcar's facilities expanded. By 1841, Redcar had 794 inhabitants.[10] In 1846, work was completed on the Middlesbrough and Redcar Railway and the presently named Redcar Central station, created to attract tourism and trade.[11][12]

Redcar's population expansion corresponded with Middlesbrough's, with the discovery in 1850 of iron ore in the Eston area of Cleveland Hills.[13] Redcar prospered as a seaside town drawing tourists attracted by eight miles of sands stretching from South Gare to Saltburn-by-the-Sea.

Plans for a pier were drawn up in 1866, but lay dormant until prompted by the announcement of plans to build a pier at Coatham in 1871.[13][14] Coatham Pier was wrecked before it was completed when two sailing ships were driven through it in a storm. It had to be shortened because of the cost of repairs and was re-opened with an entrance with two kiosks and a roller-skating rink on the Redcar side, and a bandstand halfway along its length.

Redcar Racecourse was created in 1875. Redcar Pier, another pier as well as Coatham Pier, was built in the late 1870s. In October 1880 the brig Luna caused £1,000 worth of damage to this pier. In New Year's Eve 1885 SS Cochrane demolished the landing stage.[13] and in 1897 the schooner Amarant went through the pier. A year later, its head and bandstand burned down.[13]

In October 1898 the Coatham Pier was almost wrecked when the barque Birger struck it and the pier was thereafter allowed to disintegrate. An anchor from the Birger can be seen on the sea front pavement close to the Zetland Lifeboat Museum.

In 1907 a pavilion ballroom was built on Redcar Pier behind the entrance kiosks and in 1928 it was extended.[14] A glass house for concerts was added to the remains of Coatham Pier's entrance. The presently named Redcar East railway station was built in 1929.

In 1929 Coatham Pier's glasshouse was replaced by the New Pavilion theatre. After the war, comedian and entertainer Larry Grayson coined his catchphrase "Shut that Door!" while performing there, since the stage door was open to the cold North Sea breeze.[15]

Second World War[edit]

Redcar Pier was deliberately breached (sectioned) in 1940 to prevent its use by enemy invasion forces.[14] As a result of sectioning, damage by a mine explosion and deterioration it was never reconnected and instead allowed to become even more dilapidated.[16]

Post war[edit]

Regent Cinema, at the location of Coatham Pier

In 1964 the New Pavilion Theatre was transformed into the Regent Cinema. The Redcar Pier pavilion continued in use after the war but storm damage led to it being declared unsafe and it was demolished in 1980–1981.[5][13]

Redcar Steelworks
Lackenby Steelworks at night and Warrenby blast furnace in September 2011

The town's main employers in the post-war era were the nearby Teesside Steelworks at Warrenby, founded by Dorman Long in 1917, and the ICI Wilton chemical works. The steel produced at Dorman Long was used to build the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Tyne Bridge, Auckland Harbour Bridge and many others. Both the Warrenby and Lackenby sites became part of Tata Steel when Corus was taken over in 2007, but continued to trade under the Corus name until at least February 2008. SSI bought the plant from Tata Steel in February 2011, for £320 million.

After a two-year hiatus following the mothballing of the plant in February 2010, steel was once again being made at Redcar. The Thai owners of the former Corus Plant at Lackenby, Sahaviriya Steel Industries (SSI), re-ignited the blast furnace, one of the largest in Europe, on 15 April 2012.[17]

On 18 September 2015, production was paused due to the decline in steel prices.[18] On 28 September 2015, the plant was "mothballed" amid poor steel trading conditions across the world and a drop in steel prices.[19] On 2 October, the owner of the site, SSI UK, entered liquidation. On 12 October 2015 the administrator announced that there was no realistic prospect of finding a buyer and the ovens would be extinguished.


Wards and areas[edit]

Wards periodically change, as of 2018 the town is made up of Coatham, Dormanstown, Kirkleatham, Newcomen, West Dyke, Wheatlands and Zetland.[2] Redcar is made up of areas that do not lend their name to a ward: Warrenby, Lakes Estate, Redcar East, The Ings, Ings Farm, Mickledales and Westfield.

On 5 May 2011 Redcar elected its councillors to Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council.[20] There was a by-election on 18 November 2011 for two vacant seats in the Zetland ward, held onto by the Liberal Democrats,[21] and on 19 January 2012 there was a by-election for a vacant seat in Newcomen ward subsequently gained by Labour from the Liberal Democrats.[22]


The Redcar civil parish existed from 1866 until 1968. A district in Redcar's name formed in 1885. Three years after the district was formed, the centuries-old Yorkshire authority was replaced by the North Riding of Yorkshire county council. The district became an urban district in 1894.[3]

The County Borough of Teesside shown in red, previous authorities are shown with dotted lines.

The settlement's town charter occurred in 1922, the district was able to be styled as a municipal borough and the settlement as a town. The municipal borough was merged into the County Borough of Teesside in 1968, removing it from the administrative county however still ceremonially in the area.[23]

The 1974 reform created the non-metropolitan County of Cleveland, under the Langbaurgh non-metropolitan district. The county was also inserted into the North East England region. After further changes in 1996, the district became a unitary authority called Redcar & Cleveland in the ceremonial county of North Yorkshire, the county straddling two regions of England.[24]

The North East England region was sub-divided into combined authorities, in May 2017 the Tees Valley area voted for their first mayor. The Conservative candidate, Ben Houchen, won the election and is now in his second term.


From 1987 to 2001, the local Member of Parliament (MP) was Mo Mowlam. From 2001 to 2010 the MP was Vera Baird. In the 2010 general election there was a swing to the Liberal Democrats with Ian Swales being elected. But, in the 2015 general election, Anna Turley, a Labour MP, won back Redcar. In the snap 2017 general election, Anna Turley held onto that seat. In the general election held on 12 December 2019, Anna Turley lost her seat to conservative candidate Jacob Young with a majority of 3,527 votes. Young becomes the third conservative MP to represent Redcar, the first being Royal Naval Commander Robert Tatton Bower 1931 to 1945 and Scarborough businessman Wilfred Proudfoot between 1959 and 1964 when Redcar was part of the Cleveland constituency.

Culture and community[edit]


The Palace Hub Gallery and business start up centre
Redcar Leisure Centre

The Palace Hub, on the beach front, was built by Redcar and Cleveland Council for the creative and cultural sector of the town. An art gallery and business start up centre are located in the building. The main library is in the Redcar Heart building in the centre of the town and there is a long-standing Redcar Literary Institute, which was founded in 1896.

Redcar is home to the Tuned In! Centre, which opened in 2011 and overlooks the sea front. The multi purpose venue hosts live music as well as creative workshops for young people. The annual event Clubland on the Beach, which showcases dance acts attracting visitors from across the country, has been held at Majuba Road in Redcar for the past three years.


Coatham Enclosure boating lake
Zetland Park, eastern entrance

The town has had several parks built for tourism: Coatham Enclosure, Locke Park, Zetland Park, Lily Park, an Amusement Park with a roller coaster, and a small sea front park known locally as Titty Bottle Park. The Amusement Park near the railway closed decades ago, and Titty Bottle Park was absorbed into the redeveloped sea front around Redcar Beacon.


Former Coatham Hotel[edit]

Former Coatham Hotel

The Victorian, former Coatham Hotel stands on Newcomen Terrace sea front.[25][26] The ballroom of the hotel was home to the Redcar Jazz Club, a venue for the up-and-coming bands of the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Redcar Beacon[edit]

Redcar Beacon

Construction of the Redcar Beacon started in 2011.[27] In 2013 it was nominated for the Building Design Carbuncle Cup for worst new building. It came third in the whole of the UK.[28] In December 2015, the Beacon was damaged by winds from Storm Desmond, with several large pieces of panelling falling onto the beach below. It was also damaged in winter 2016, where a panel from the top fell off in a storm.[29]

Listed buildings[edit]

There are 23 listed buildings in Redcar.[30] The Grade I Listed Sir William Turner's Hospital in Kirkleatham was built between 1674-1676 and listed on the 14 June 1952.[31]

At the west end of High Street is a Grade II listed clock tower,[32] a memorial to King Edward VII who was a regular visitor to Redcar. The tower has now been refurbished. On the Esplanade is the Grade II-Listed Zetland Lifeboat Museum[33] housing the world's oldest lifeboat Zetland Lifeboat.

In the south-east of Redcar is an aircraft listening post built in 1916 during the First World War as part of a regional defence system to detect approaching aircraft, principally Zeppelins, and give early warning.It is an example of an acoustic mirror, of which other examples can be found along the east coast of Britain. The mirror was used up until the invention of radar and although it was built on open fields today a modern housing estate now surrounds it. Only the concrete sound mirror remains and is now a Grade II listed building.[34][35]


To the east of Redcar is the grade II* listed Church of St Peter, designed by Ignatius Bonomi and built 1822–29.[36] In 1818, Lord Dundas gave land for a church, St Peters. The foundation stone was laid by Lady Turner of Kirkleatham in 1823. Initially it was a daughter church of Marske, but became an independent parish in 1867.[37] It has a window commemorating local benefactor Sir William Turner.


Redcar has two railway stations, on the Tees Valley line, with trains operated by Northern and TransPennine Express, namely Redcar Central and Redcar East. A third station Redcar British Steel, which closed in December 2019, served the steelworks.[38][39]

The main roads through the town are the A1085 and the A1042, with the A174 bypassing. Redcar is served primarily by Arriva North East buses, connecting Redcar with the surrounding towns and villages.

The Pangea North and CANTAT-3 submarine telecommunication cables both come ashore between Redcar and Marske-by-the-Sea.[40]


The town's further education college is Redcar & Cleveland College.

The town's secondary schools are: Outwood Academy Redcar, Sacred Heart Catholic Secondary and Rye Hills Academy.

There are eleven primary schools in Redcar: Coatham, Dormanstown, Green Gates, Ings Farm, John E Batty, Lakes, Newcomen, Riverdale, St Benedict's, Wheatlands and Zetland.


In Coatham is Cleveland Golf Club, the first golf club to be formed in Yorkshire. It was established in 1887 and is a links course.[41] Also in Coatham is Redcar Cricket Club, which play in the NYSD league,[13][42] and Redcar Running Club.[43]

In association football, Redcar Athletic currently compete in the Northern League Division One while Redcar Town play in Northern League Division Two. Redcar Rugby Union Football club play at Mackinlay Park.[44]

Redcar Racecourse is one of nine thoroughbred horse racecourses in Yorkshire. There is also a motorcycle speedway racing team, the Redcar Bears racing in the SGB Championship. The race track is at the South Tees Motorsport Park in Southbank Street, South Bank and is unusual in that one bend is more highly banked than the other.[45] The team was formerly captained by 1992 World Champion Gary Havelock and was formerly managed by his father Brian.

The town is set to host the 2022 Tour of Britain stage four, UCI Europe Tour cycling race. The town was previously set to host a stage of the Tour de Yorkshire, the event was affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.[46]

Notable people[edit]

Filmography and Television[edit]

A location from the film Atonement

In 2006, Redcar was used as a location for the film adaptation of the Ian McEwan novel Atonement. The Coatham Hotel, Regent Cinema, a section of Newcomen Terrace and part of the beach were dressed as 1940s Dunkirk. Filming took place across three days in August 2006, with local men playing the soldiers.[61][62]

The Secret Millionaire

In 2010, Redcar was featured on the Channel 4 television programme The Secret Millionaire. David Jamilly a humanitarian, philanthropist and self-made millionaire, visited the Redcar community and gave £25,000 to Zoë's Place for a sensory room, £25,000 to Redcar Amateur Boxing Club to start an Olympic fund, and £25,000 to Sid's Place for special counselling.

There was a subsequent visit on 14 May to a screening at Redcar's cinema, attended by the mayor and mayoress along with all the charities and people involved.[citation needed] The feature of the documentary involved the closure of the nearby Corus steelworks as well as the charities. On 9 December 2011, Jamilly opened the new Redcar Education Development centre in Park Avenue, Redcar. The centre provides day care for adults with learning difficulties. He also opened the Redcar Primary Care Hospital on 9 December 2011 and the new Sid's Place on 15 December 2011.

The Mighty Redcar

The town was filmed for the 2018 BBC television documentary The Mighty Redcar. The four-part series followed young people from Redcar and surrounding towns as they completed their studies and looked for work.[63]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b UK Census (2011). "Local Area Report – Redcar Built-up area Sub division (E35000002)". Nomis. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 13 August 2021.
  2. ^ a b "Local electoral arrangements finalised for Redcar and Cleveland". Retrieved 19 July 2021.
  3. ^ a b "Redcar Tn/CP". Retrieved 1 August 2021.
  4. ^ Simpson, David (2009). "Yorkshire Place-Names P to S". Yorkshire. Retrieved 31 August 2010.
  5. ^ a b c Fiona (29 April 2009). "History of Redcar". Gazette Live. Archived from the original on 20 April 2013. Retrieved 9 June 2009.
  6. ^ "Redcar Rocks". Dive Norway. Retrieved 23 November 2015.
  7. ^ "The Zetland Lifeboat Museum enters a new era". RNLI. 16 March 2015. Retrieved 3 August 2015.
  8. ^ "Welcome – Zetland Lifeboat Museum and Redcar Heritage Centre". Zetland Lifeboat Museum and Redcar Heritage Centre. Retrieved 3 August 2015.
  9. ^ "World's oldest surviving lifeboat returns to Redcar home". BBC. 6 April 2019.
  10. ^ "Raydon – Redditch Pages 645–652 A Topographical Dictionary of England. Originally published by S Lewis, London, 1848". British History Online. Retrieved 13 July 2020.
  11. ^ "The Stockton and Darlington Railway". Newcastle University. Archived from the original on 17 July 2011. Retrieved 16 April 2011.; "Railways and Waggonways in Cleveland". Waggonways in North East England. Archived from the original on 27 April 2012. Retrieved 21 June 2012.
  12. ^ Ellison, M. H. "The Stockton and Darlington Railway". Newcastle University. Archived from the original on 17 July 2011. Retrieved 27 May 2008.
  13. ^ a b c d e f "People & Places". Retrieved 5 August 2009.[dead link]
  14. ^ a b c Delplanque, Paul (31 October 2008). "The End of the Pier Show". Gazette Live – Remember When. Evening Gazette. Archived from the original on 15 April 2010. Retrieved 9 June 2009.
  15. ^ "this is Redcar & Cleveland History of the Regent Cinema". 17 August 2017. Archived from the original on 10 February 2017. Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  16. ^ "Youngsters delve deep to help uncover secrets of the sea". The Northern Echo. 13 August 2003. Retrieved 9 June 2009.
  17. ^ "Blast furnace at former Corus Redcar steel plant relit". BBC News. BBC. 5 April 2012. Retrieved 15 April 2012.; "Welcome to the British Steel Collection". British Steel Collection. 2011. Retrieved 13 September 2011.
  18. ^ "SSI Redcar steel plant production 'paused'". BBC News. BBC. 18 September 2015. Retrieved 18 September 2015.
  19. ^ "SSI Redcar steel plant mothballed, costing 1,700 jobs". BBC News. BBC. 28 September 2015. Retrieved 28 September 2015.
  20. ^ "Election Results for May 2011". this is Redcar and Cleveland. Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council. 5 May 2011. Archived from the original on 31 May 2011. Retrieved 16 June 2011.
  21. ^ Frankland, Richard (17 November 2011). "Election of Councillors for Zetland" (PDF). Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council. Archived from the original (PDF) on 9 May 2015. Retrieved 12 June 2012.
  22. ^ Frankland, Richard (20 January 2012). "Election of a Councillor for Newcomen" (PDF). Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council. Archived from the original (PDF) on 9 May 2015. Retrieved 12 June 2012.
  23. ^ *Youngs, Frederic A. Jr. (1991). Guide to the Local Administrative Units of England, Vol.2: Northern England. London: Royal Historical Society. pp. 661–667, 788–789. ISBN 0-86193-127-0.
  24. ^ "The Cleveland (Structural Change) Order 1995",, The National Archives, 30 January 1995, SI 1995/187, retrieved 13 July 2021
    "The Cleveland (Further Provision) Order 1995",, The National Archives, 10 July 1995, SI 1995/1747, retrieved 13 July 2021
  25. ^ "The Coatham Hotel 1905". Communigate. Archived from the original on 24 July 2008. Retrieved 27 May 2008.; Garratt, Mick. "Former Coatham Hotel". Geograph. Archived from the original on 28 April 2008. Retrieved 27 May 2008.
  26. ^ "Town Clock". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
  27. ^ "Plans for Redcar's vertical pier approved". BBC News. BBC. 24 November 2010. Retrieved 21 September 2011.
  28. ^ Smith, Oliver (19 August 2013). "Britain's ugliest new buildings named". Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 12 January 2022. Retrieved 19 August 2014.
  29. ^ "Storm Desmond hits UK". BBC News. BBC. 5 December 2015. Retrieved 5 December 2015.
  30. ^ "Conservation and Listed Buildings – Redcar". Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council. Archived from the original on 14 October 2011. Retrieved 10 June 2009.
  31. ^ Historic England. "Sir William Turner's Hospital (1310786)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 18 July 2021.
  32. ^ "Redcar Town Clock". Communigate. Archived from the original on 25 July 2008. Retrieved 27 May 2008.
  33. ^ "Royal National Lifeboat Institute Zetland Lifeboat Museum and Attached Wall, Redcar". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
  34. ^ Grantham, Andrew. "Redcar sound mirror". Sound mirrors. Retrieved 27 May 2008.
  35. ^ "Listening Post 330 Metres of Wheatlands Farmhouse, Redcar". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
  36. ^ "Church of St Peter, Redcar". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 17 July 2012.
  37. ^ "History". St Peter's Church, Redcar. Retrieved 13 July 2020.
  38. ^ "Bishop Auckland and Darlington to Middlesbrough and Saltburn Timetable" (PDF). Northern. Retrieved 22 November 2019.
  39. ^ "Redcar British Steel Station Information". Northern. Archived from the original on 9 December 2019. Retrieved 22 November 2019.
  40. ^ Twigg, Chris (9 October 2008). "CANTAT-3 and Pangea North Landing Point". Hidden Teesside. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
  41. ^ "Cleveland Golf Club's green light for 'mound'". 26 January 2021. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  42. ^ "Redcar Cricket Club – RCC". Play-Cricket. Archived from the original on 31 January 2013. Retrieved 21 June 2012.
  43. ^ "Welcome to Redcar Running Club". Redcar Running Club. Retrieved 21 June 2012.
  44. ^ "Redcar Rugby Union Football Club". Pitchero. Archived from the original on 29 July 2012. Retrieved 21 June 2012.
  45. ^ "Visitor Guide 2012.pdf" (PDF). 2012. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 23 June 2012.
  46. ^ "Redcar confirmed as Tour of Britain cycling race host town". 10 February 2022. Retrieved 10 February 2022.
  47. ^ Proud, Keith (6 April 2005). "Queen of the desert". The Northern Echo's History Pages. Retrieved 16 March 2009.[dead link]
  48. ^ Yale, Pat (9 August 2016). "Gertrude of Arabia: the great adventurer may finally get her museum". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 August 2016.
  49. ^ "Red Barns House and Red Barns Hotel, Redcar". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 17 June 2012.
  50. ^ "Historical Photos". Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council. Archived from the original on 12 June 2011. Retrieved 15 October 2008.
  51. ^ Langdon, Julia (19 August 2005). "Obituary: Marjorie Mowlam". Guardian. Retrieved 9 September 2008.
  52. ^ "Pip Donaghy". Retrieved 4 August 2017.
  53. ^ "Place of Birth Search". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved 27 May 2008.[dead link]
  54. ^ Robson, Dave (29 June 2017). "Award for Teesside actress 4m people a week listen to". Gazette Live. Retrieved 3 December 2018.
  55. ^ "David Coverdale". Archived from the original on 27 January 2007. Retrieved 27 May 2008.
  56. ^ "Chris Norman (I)". Retrieved 10 August 2008.
  57. ^ "The Spencer Davis Group". Archived from the original on 4 August 2009. Retrieved 20 September 2008.
  58. ^ "Dame Tanni Grey Thompson DBE". Creating Excellence. Archived from the original on 16 October 2008. Retrieved 9 August 2008.
  59. ^ "UCI MTB World Championship | UCI MTB World Championship 2016 | Val di Sole, Italy". Red Bull TV. Archived from the original on 15 September 2016. Retrieved 14 September 2016.
  60. ^ Taylor, Louise (21 March 2008). "Wheater swaps nights at the bingo for the bright lights of England". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 September 2008.
  61. ^ Hencke, David (24 May 2006). "Redcar scrubs up for starring role in film version of Atonement". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 June 2009.; "This Month I'm Going Snap Happy on the Atonement Sets". CommuniGate. Archived from the original on 26 September 2007.
  62. ^ "Redcar". Gazette Live. Teesside: Evening Gazette. Archived from the original on 7 February 2008. Retrieved 27 May 2008.
  63. ^ "The Mighty Redcar: Review – a moving depiction of town's struggles". The Northern Echo. 6 September 2018. Retrieved 14 September 2018.

External links[edit]