Seaside shelter, 145 metres north-west of The Spa in South Cliff Gardens


Heritage Category:
Listed Building
List Entry Number:
Date first listed:
Statutory Address:
Scarborough, North Yorkshire, YO11 2HD


© Crown Copyright and database right 2021. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2021. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1471394.pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 19-Jan-2021 at 10:16:31.


Statutory Address:
Scarborough, North Yorkshire, YO11 2HD

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

North Yorkshire
Scarborough (District Authority)
Non Civil Parish
National Grid Reference:


Seaside shelter, late C19 or early C20, by F A and S Tugwell for the Cliff Bridge Company.

Reasons for Designation

The seaside shelter erected between 1897 and 1909 is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:

* as an attractive and largely intact shelter, with some unusual details in design, by known architect Frank Alfred Tugwell; * as a decorative piece of late Victorian or Edwardian coastal garden furniture specifically designed to enhance the visitor experience of the seaside surroundings.

Historic interest:

* as a structure that captures the spirit of Scarborough’s notable and long-standing social history as an important seaside resort.

Group value:

* the shelter benefits from a spatial group value with a range of listed buildings within the Registered Valley Gardens and South Cliff Gardens (Grade II) including The Spa (Grade II*), entrance gates to South Cliff gardens (Grade II) and the Spa Chalet (Grade II).


The historical development of South Cliff Gardens is outlined in the Register entry for Valley Gardens and South Cliff Gardens (Grade II, National Heritage List for England (NHLE) 1001528). In 1827 the Cliff Bridge Company received The Spa and adjacent cliff walks in exchange for the construction of the Spa or Cliff Bridge for the Scarborough Corporation. The earliest mention of draining the cliffs, with plans for laying out the grounds with trees, shrubs and walks, was in 1837. George Knowles (1776-1856), architect and civil engineer, is credited with the first phase of landscaping the cliffs west of the spa buildings, with a promenade and serpentine walks. His landscaping survives as the core of the South Cliff gardens north of the South Cliff Railway, as is clear from the Ordnance Survey map of 1853 (surveyed 1850). In addition to the formal entrance over the Spa or Cliff Bridge, the new gardens and path network were also accessed from the Esplanade, including from opposite the Crown Hotel through a set of wrought iron Egyptian style gates. Walter White described the view of the gardens from the Esplanade around 1858 as 'a great slope…embowered with trees and shrubs, through which….you get a glimpse of a graveled path or the domed roof of a summerhouse'. In 1912 the Scarborough Corporation purchased George Lord Beeforth's enclosed private gardens directly south of the Cliff Bridge Company’s South Cliff Gardens. Harry W Smith (1867- 1940), landscape gardener and the Borough engineer for Scarborough from 1897 to 1933, laid out the newly extended South Cliff Gardens, with paths which linked the several separate gardens. In 1957 the Spa (Scarborough) Ltd (formerly the Cliff Bridge Company) sold the Grand Hall, Spa, and gardens to the Scarborough Corporation.

The gardens contain a number of listed buildings and 14 late-C19 and early-C20 timber and concrete shelters located along the serpentine walks. The shelter 145m south of The Spa was designed by F A and S Tugwell for the Cliff Bridge Company, and approved by the Borough Surveyors Office on 14 April 1887. Frank Tugwell established F A and S Tugwell with his brother, Sydney, between 1897 and 1899, and continued to produce designs for the Cliff Bridge Company after their partnership ceased. As built the shelter differs slightly from the design plans including the provision of box rather than splayed projecting bays, the addition of trefoil arched fascia boards to the small gable ends and no posts and ball finial at the end of the retaining walls. The shelter’s exact date of construction is uncertain, but it may have been erected in time for the opening of St Nicholas Gardens and the Esplanade extension by the Lord Mayor of London on the 14 August 1900. A 1909 postcard of the view from Cliff Bridge suggests the presence of a building standing in the locality. The shelter is first depicted on the 1:1500 Ordnance Survey map published 1912 (revised 1910), and its footprint remains unchanged today.

In 2007 the shelter was restored, with the reinstatement of some lost moulded principal uprights, timber wall cladding and seating (including outdoor plank benches attached to the north and south bays and retaining walls), and it was repainted in 2015. Over time glazing may have been removed.


Seaside shelter, late C19 or early C20, by F A and S Tugwell for the Cliff Bridge Company.

MATERIALS: timber, red brick, rosemary clay tile.

PLAN: rectangular on plan, with two short retaining walls.

EXTERIOR: not inspected (2020), information from other sources. The single-storey shelter stands on a terrace 145m north-west of The Spa in South Cliff Gardens, with views east towards the sea over Cleveland Way. It is accessed by four stone steps from the promenade footpath running between the rear bridge of The Spa towards Cliff Bridge. It is a timber-framed structure with moulded principal uprights forming ten framed bays to the front (east) and two bays to the left (south) and right (north) return. The rear (west) elevation is built in red brick, with rendered, shaped brick walls to either side. It is unclear from photographs provided whether the north and south L-shaped external wooden plank benches remain. The front elevation has a central entrance flanked to each side by bays two to four and seven to nine projecting outward to form two gabled viewing bays. The lower posts and rails have plain boarding, with lattice fencing overlaid in the end bays and the upper has tall chamfered Tudor arched openings (now all without glazing). The left and right returns match this arrangement, but instead have lower vertical hit and miss boarding. There are overhanging eaves with shaped brackets supporting a rosemary tiled Dutch gable roof. The front roof plane has two small east facing gables, set above the projecting bays, with trefoil arched fascia boards, panelled soffits and half-timber panelling.

INTERIOR: not inspected, information from other sources. The rear wall and lower principal uprights of the front and end walls are clad in tongue and groove timber panelling. A continuous fixed low bench runs around the walls with shaped wooden bench dividers. The closed vault ceiling matches in profile the trefoil arched gable fascia boards, and it is panelled with horizontal decorative beams. It has a red tiled floor.


Books and journals
White, W, A Month in Yorkshire, (1858), 84
Woodhouse, R, The Scarborough Book of Days, (2013), July 19th
South Cliff Gardens Scarborough: Conservation Management Plan 1061/SG/V2 August 2018, accessed 21 July 2020 from
Leeds Mercury Wednesday 4 March 1914, 3
North Yorkshire County Record Office DC/SCB Plan 836 14 April 1897 Proposed Chalet for The Cliff Bridge Company Limited
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography: Sir Joseph Paxton
The London Gazette January 13 1899, 241
Whitby Gazette Friday 14 May 1897, 2


This building is listed under the Planning (Listed Buildings and Conservation Areas) Act 1990 as amended for its special architectural or historic interest.

End of official listing

Your Contributions

Do you know more about this entry?

The following information has been contributed by users volunteering for our Enriching The List project. For small corrections to the List Entry please see our Minor Amendments procedure.

The information and images below are the opinion of the contributor, are not part of the official entry and do not represent the official position of Historic England. We have not checked that the contributions below are factually accurate. Please see our terms and conditions. If you wish to report an issue with a contribution or have a question please email [email protected].