Blaeu's Chart showing Filey Bridge and Pier structure

Blaeu's Chart showing Filey Bridge and Pier structure

The origin of Spittals Rocks on Filey Brigg is subject to some controversy but the historical evidence, including this extract from Blaeu’s sea Mirror of 1625 shows that the structure was well known as a refuge for Maritime Trade and is marked on Blaeu’s chart:






“Without the head of Filey lieth a rock underwater called Filey Bridge , betwixt it and the pier you may safely lie afloat in a ship of 100 lasts in 5 fathoms at low water”

A ‘last’ is an old Northern European term for measuring load, or volume or both. The term survives in modern terminology in the name ‘ballast’ . The unit is variable according to area and use, but one last would be about 4000 pounds, 1800kg or about 3 cubic meters of cargo space. A 100 last ship would be a substantial vessel of around 180 tons.

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