A fortune hunter’s regal 19th century journey to the town

Peter James Bowman
Peter James Bowman

For hundreds of years visitors to Scarborough have savoured the beaches and coastal views.

Yet even royalty have to wrestle with the weather, as German Prince Hermann von Pückler-Muskau found out in 1827.

Details of his regal journey to town are revealed in Peter James Bowman’s book The Fortune Hunter: A German Prince in Regency England.

The extract reads: “I then proceeded to the ‘Sands’,—that is, the part of the beach left by the tide; a very singular promenade.

“Saddle-horses, and carriages of all kinds, stand in numbers for hire; and you may ride for miles on the very brink of the waves, over ground like velvet.

“The old Castle of Scarborough on the one side, and a fine iron bridge connecting two hills on the other, increase the picturesque character of the scene. I rode by the light of the evening sun up to the Castle, from which the view is magnificent, and which is itself an imposing object. On the highest point of the ruin is an iron machine like a kibble, which serves as a beacon. A large tar-barrel is placed on it and set on fire. It burns like a flaming torch the night through.”