Filey is a seaside town in North Yorkshire, England. It was traditionally a fishing village, catching sea trout from cobles, but it lacks a harbour - boats have to be dragged up the sands. So its fishermen couldn't compete with better-endowed ports and in the 19th century the village evolved into a holiday resort. In 2021 the population was 6665.
Filey's long firm sandy beach stretches for 3 miles between the Brigg and Flamborough Head. From 1910 to 1912 this was a test field for early aviation, with Bleriots and other locally-designed aircraft juddering into the sky on shaky wings.
Get in edit
By rail edit
Filey is on a branch line between Hull and Scarborough, so you can get here in two ways: via York, changing at Seamer (just before Scarborough) for the train towards Hull, or at Hull north via Beverley and Bridlington. The branch line trains run daily but only every two hours or so, and the Seamer connection can be tight - if your train from York is late, ask the conductor if the Hull train can be held. But you'll probably be advised to stay on the train to Scarborough then take Bus 12 / 13, see below, which doesn't go through Seamer.
1 Filey railway station is a sturdy old brick building with a small waiting room, toilet and ticket machine. There is step-free access to both platforms via the level crossing. Outside is a taxi office, a string of eating places and the bus station.
By road edit
From M1 / A1 take A64 east past York. This road gets very congested on summer weekends.
From South and Midlands follow M18 east onto M62. Leave at Howden, take A614 to Bridlington then A165. This road can likewise be slow-moving.
Travel news on Yorkshire Coast Radio[dead link] (96.2FM) will cheerfully confirm that you are indeed stuck in a traffic jam.
There's very little parking by the seafront, as the esplanade huddles against a cliff. Try north end of town, eg round Church Ravine, or the country park towards the Brigg.
By bus edit
The simplest route is via Scarborough, reached by the hourly Transdev Coastliner 843 from Leeds via York and Malton. Then take East Yorkshire Bus 12 / 13, which runs south from Scarborough daily every 30 min to Filey (30 min) and Bridlington (another 30 min). It's a leisurely trip as the bus visits all the caravan parks along the coast.
From Hull take East Yorkshire Bus 121 to Bridlington. This runs hourly, daily, taking two hours via Beverley and Driffield. Then take the 12 / 13 bus for Filey.
Filey bus station, 100 yards from the railway station, is just a big brick bus shelter with no facilities.
Get around edit
Bus 12 / 13 gets you along the coast, but the train gets you closer to Hunmanby (for the distillery) and Bempton (for Flamborough Head).
The local taxi firm is Lazer Radio Taxis, tel +44 1723 515515.
- 1 Filey Museum, 8 Queen Street YO14 9HB, ☏ . Apr-Oct Su-F 11:00-15:30. Small quirky museum of local history. Adult £2.50.
- 2 St Oswald's Church, Church Cliff Drive YO14 9ET. This fine church is from 12th / 13th century, and may have been the site of an important church for much longer. Until the Dissolution it had no vicar but was served by the monks of Bridlington Priory. It's perched above the ravine that was once the county boundary, so to say that someone "would soon be in North Riding" meant he or she would soon be laid to rest in the churchyard. The tower was a landmark for fishing vessels and in 2014 its lead roof was discovered to be etched with over 1500 graffiti from the 18th / 19th centuries.
- Sculpture along the promenade, such as High tide in short wellies aka Finlay, the great steel fisherman.
- Gardens: Crescent Gardens, off The Crescent mid-town, is a sedate municipal layout of rose beds and summer bedding plants, with a Victorian bandstand.
- Glen Gardens south edge of town is a more open space for ball games and picnics; there's a cafe. These were the gardens of Ravine Hall, which no longer stands.
- Nuns' Walk on the north edge of town is a wildlife space, formerly the convent gardens.
- 3 Filey Dams is a freshwater wetland (now rare in this area) at the east end of the village. See bird life, plants and newts. Reach it along Wharfedale Drive.
- 4 Filey Bird Garden & Animal Park, Scarborough Rd YO14 9PG, ☏ . Apr-Sept daily 10:00-17:00, Oct daily 10:00-16:00. Kiddy-zoo with aviary and gardens. Adult £8, conc £7.50, child £7.
- 1 Filey Brigg is the rocky neck of land extending from the cliffs of Carr Naze. South of it, the coast is clay, which the sea has scooped out and is still busily eroding to form the bay. A path has been laid along the Brigg, reach it either along the beach or by the path descending from the car park at the top of the Naze. Get yourself out of there two hours before high tide, as a couple of low spots along the Brigg flood early and will cut you off.
- Cleveland Way is a clear trail leading north-east along the cliff top to Scarborough, and eventually to Whitby. The southbound path leads through Filey to Flamborough Head and Bridlington.
- Flamborough Head: see Bridlington for these great white cliffs that curtain the south end of the bay.
- 2 Yorkshire Spirit Distillery, Hunmanby Industrial Estate YO14 0PH (2 miles south of Filey, 200 yards east of Hunmanby railway station). Tours M-Sa 11:00, 13:00 & 15:00, Su 13:00. They produce English whisky. Various tours and on Tuesday at 15:00 there's a combined tour with Wold Top Brewery, you'll need your own transport between them. Basic tour £5.
- Surf: see Scarborough#Do for Cayton Bay to the north. Reighton Gap to the south also has waves but the surf shop has folded.
- Golf: Filey GC is south edge of town, white tees 6274 yards, par 71, visitor round £70.
- Filey Folk Festival is next held F 3 - M 6 May 2024.
- Filey Steampunk Weekend is next held Sa 20 - Su 21 May 2023.
- Filey Kite Festival is next held 16-17 Sept 2023.
- Supermarket: Tesco is by the railway and bus stations, open M-Sa 07:00-22:00, Su 10:00-16:00.
- Sterchi's[dead link] sell their own handmade chocolates. They're at 11 Hope St and open daily 09:00-16:00.
- Lots of small eateries on or near the main street from railway & bus station down to the shore. They include Amparian (Spanish), Monsoon Indian, San Marco's & Bella Italia, Gold River & Golden Dragon (Chinese).
- Fish & chips sit-in places include Inghams (Belle Vue St), First Catch (Station Rd) and Dicky Bee's (Mitford St).
- Charlotte's (or "The Glass House") is fine continental dining at 40 Belle Vue St, open M Tu Th-Sa 11:30-22:00, Su 12:00-15:00.
- Filey is a traditional resort: you eat fish & chips, you yell at the dog, you drink beer. So Filey pubs are faring better than in other villages. They include The Imperial on Hope St, Bonhommes on The Crescent, The Buccaneer on Union St, Foords Hotel and The Grapes on Queen St, The Star on Mitford St, The Station on Church St, and Cobble Bar north end of the prom. They're all open daily, mostly 11:00-23:00.
- Banks Lounge Bar is the standout, an Art Deco cocktail bar in a former bank on Murray St, open Su-F 17:00-23:00, Su 15:00-00:00.
- Wold Top Brewery is based on a farm 5 miles southwest of Filey. It doesn't normally offer tours, but see the Distillery for the combined tour.
- 1 All Seasons Hotel, 11 Rutland St, Filey YO14 9JA, ☏ . Chic welcoming hotel in midtown. B&B double £150.
- 2 White Lodge, The Crescent, Filey YO14 9JX, ☏ . Smart comfy hotel in a Victorian villa, with restaurant. B&B double £180.
- B&Bs include Athol House and Binton both on West Ave, White Rose on Southdene, Beachdale on Brooklands, Rutland West on Rutland St, and Three Tuns on Murray St.
- Caravan parks line the coast. Many units are on long leases, but one that accepts four night stays is Primrose Valley on the main road two miles south of town.
- 3 Wold Cottage, off Rainsburgh Lane, Wold Newton YO25 3HL, ☏ . Check-in: 16:00, check-out: 09:30. Some cottage! It's a plush Georgian manor, now an upscale B&B. Also has self-catering. No dogs. B&B double £160.
As of May 2023, Filey and its approach roads have 4G from EE, Three and Vodafone, and 5G from O2.
Go next edit
- Scarborough to the north is a larger resort, with a crumbly castle. The rugged coast is scenic further north through Robin Hood's Bay.
- Bridlington to the south is another trad resort. The main draw is dramatic Flamborough Head.
- Malton inland is on the edge of the North York Moors and is near sumptuous Castle Howard.