Pancake Day in Scarborough: time for skipping and flipping!

Skipping Day fun on the foreshore
Skipping Day fun on the foreshore

It’s the time of year again to go skipping-and-flipping crazy!

Scarborough’s annual Shrove Tuesday, or Skipping Day, celebrations are a highlight of the town’s calendar, old-fashioned fun that spans the generations.

The skipping – when Foreshore Road is closed to traffic and packed with families and schoolchildren – has been our unique tradition for well over 100 years.

Tuesday’s activities are put on by Scarborough Council and Yorkshire Coast Radio.

The fun begins with the ringing at 12 noon of the Pancake Bell on the corner of North Street and Westborough. It will be the first Shrove Tuesday event for new town crier David Birdsall, accompanied by mayor Tom Fox.

The tradition dates back to 1853, when it was supposedly rung to signal to housewives to begin making the pancakes.

This will be followed by pancake racing in Aberdeen Walk.

Organiser Nick Taylor said: “Our Shrove Tuesday events are always really good, traditional fun, and we’re hopeful of good weather.”

The Foreshore Road skipping is a tradition first mentioned in 1903, although it is likely to be much older. Shrove Tuesday was a day for games, and old fishing ropes which were beyond repair were given to children to use for skipping. Scarborough is the only place in the country where Shrove Tuesday long-rope skipping takes place.

The skipping gets under way at around 1pm, when many schools allow children the afternoon off to take part.

As usual, Scarborough Sea Cadets will be serving hungry skippers with pancakes, as well as teas and coffees, at their headquarters in East Sandgate.