Who was Filey’s richest woman?

The impressive North Cliff building in Filey.
The impressive North Cliff building in Filey.

A special talk investigating the person who has been called Filey’s ‘woman of mystery’ will be held at Filey’s Evron Centre.

The talk, focusing on Elinor Clarke, will take place on Thursday 19 January.

It will be delivered on behalf of the Filey Bay Initiative by Dr George Sheeran, who will unravel the mystery of who Filey’s richest Victorian resident really was, and why she had North Cliff built – the largest and most impressive house in the town.

Dr Sheeran, of the University of Bradford, said: “Elinor Clarke was the daughter of a Manchester wallpaper manufacturer and her family network included Manchester merchants who had also speculated in land and buildings there and elsewhere.

“Miss Clarke was to inherit the lot after they had died.

“Although her wealth at her death in 1905 (something like £20 million in today’s terms) did not put her in the super-rich bracket, she was acquainted with those who were.”

Dr Sheeran has also tracked down the original plans of the house in an archive at the University of York.

The talk, Elinor Clarke and the Building of North Cliff, will be held in the centre’s conference room at 7pm (free entry).