Sunday, 10 February 2013

Freiston Shore.

Although the seaside town of Skegness is only 23 miles from Boston, most working class people with large families couldn't afford to go there on a regular basis and it was a real treat for us kids to have a day at "Skeggy." Four or five miles down the road however was Freiston Shore (the poor mans Skeggy) which was easily reached on a bike by us in the 1950's and 1960's.
There was no sandy beach there, Punch and Judy or amusements of any kind, all it consisted of was marshland, muddy creeks to bathe in, borstal boys and old gun placements designed to keep the Germans away if they tried to conquer England through Lincolnshire but it was all good fun for us and we had many a happy day playing there.
During the 1800's however, following the drainage of the fens, there was an attempt to make Freiston Shore a seaside resort.

As a result two hotels were built, the Plummers and the Marine which offered around a hundred rooms and folk would stay there for their holidays or make trips by the daily Boston omnibus to go swimming and picnicking. The picture below shows a horse race meeting there in 1844.

But the silt soon returned which made the sea retreat further from the hotels and their trade quickly declined.
In the 20th. century much of Freiston Shore was reclaimed again by embankments built by the borstal boys from the North Sea Camp. The two pictures below show the boys working and marching through Boston.

The Borstal camp is now an open prison and Freiston Shore itself is an RSPB Nature reserve, the largest example of such a project in the UK. where over 150 bird species recorded yearly.
The Picture below shows how the sea once came up to the Plummers Hotel.

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