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A poignant day.

(34 Posts)
Sago Sun 18-Feb-24 19:02:43

Our daughter was home at the beginning of the week with our grandchildren, she expressed an interest in seeing some old family documents.
Among the papers were the letters home from my husbands uncle, he was in Normandy 1944/5.
Sadly he never came home.

In the letters to his parents he kept mentioning “Littlebeck” he was asking when his parents would return and for how long, he wrote of his longing to be there with them again.

Last night we found Littlebeck on an OS map and this morning set off to hike around the area.
It’s between Goathland and Whitby in a secluded valley.
It’s hamlet with a Methodist chapel and a handful of houses, we were intrigued with the families connection and couldn’t figure out where they would have stayed, the only link was they were strong Methodists.

The hamlet is beyond beautiful, we walked and then went to the tiny chapel, there was a service starting so we stayed.
The service was led by a local farmer and his wife, they made us so welcome as did the 10 strong congregation!

It was so lovely to be in a Church where the family would have worshipped and a place that was clearly so special to them.

We learnt that the farm which has been in the same family for generations was a place of retreat for Methodists and they had a very strong connection with Hull, the farmers wife is going to dig out the visitors books from the era and see if she can find them.

My husband had never heard his parents or Grandparents mention Littlebeck so we can only assume it had been too painful for them to return without their son.

It was a very special Sunday.

nandad Sun 18-Feb-24 19:14:32

What a special day indeed.

crazyH Sun 18-Feb-24 19:15:51

How lovely for you and the fact that your daughter was able to share the memories makes it even more special. So pleased for you

sodapop Sun 18-Feb-24 19:20:08

A lovely family time to share Sago and a beautiful area to return to.

Primrose53 Sun 18-Feb-24 19:20:46

Lovely story. Thank you.

Urmstongran Sun 18-Feb-24 19:22:41

A touching tale Sago.
Thank you for sharing it with us.

NotSpaghetti Sun 18-Feb-24 19:25:04

What a lovely day. But bitter sweet.

flappergirl Sun 18-Feb-24 19:35:46

What a lovely and interesting story. Please keep us updated, if you feel appropriate. I would like to know if the farmer's wife found your husband's uncle.

I think you and your daughter were meant to find Littlebeck and its chapel.

SeaWoozle Sun 18-Feb-24 19:37:56

Oh my goodness. What a beautiful story. Nostalgic and touching in equal measures. Made me quite emotional that has X

Susiewong65 Sun 18-Feb-24 19:44:01

Gosh what an interesting story, let us know what the farmers wife finds.

GrannyGravy13 Sun 18-Feb-24 19:56:13

Sago what a wonderful nugget of information to find

Callistemon21 Sun 18-Feb-24 20:02:30

Thank you Sago
A poignant story, it is sad but so important and thankfully these documents survived for future generations.

dragonfly46 Sun 18-Feb-24 20:11:58


Sago Sun 18-Feb-24 20:38:45

I think it’s interesting that we were so impulsive and decided to take the trip.
We were at the chapel just before 2.00pm which is an unusual time for a service.
We were meant to be there today!

I’m hoping there is a record in the visitors book but either way so pleased we visited.

Littlebeck must have been a much needed escape from the bombs that were falling on Hull, the family lived in Hornsea at this time but the family business was near the docks in Hull.

They had lost an infant daughter in 1912, they had one son in Normandy and my late FIL who was serving in India.

My husband who was born in 1956 was desperate to hear their stories as he was growing up but they would not discuss war, it was too painful.

He has since spent many hours researching their stories.

In the documents was a very moving letter from the Captain of the ship that took his Uncle over to Sword beach for D-Day along with the telegram announcing his death.

Terribly sad.

Jaxjacky Sun 18-Feb-24 20:42:13

What a lovely piece of follow up Sago poignant indeed.

SeaWoozle Sun 18-Feb-24 20:45:18

Wow, so wonderful. Glad your husband has managed to find out more information.

Faierynan Tue 20-Feb-24 14:34:35

Wonderful feeling standing in the footsteps of our ancestors

Chocolatelovinggran Tue 20-Feb-24 15:04:31

Sago that's a lovely story. What a tough life our ancestors had- hard work, infant deaths, and, then, sending their husbands, fathers, brothers, and sons, off to war.

baubles Tue 20-Feb-24 15:07:43

Thank you for sharing your lovely story Sago.

Dillonsgranma Tue 20-Feb-24 17:16:02

Thank you for sharing that with us. How lovely to discover Littlebeck and I’m sure your family will return there ❤️🥰

Oldnproud Tue 20-Feb-24 17:44:06

What a very touching story.

The name 'Littlebeck' has brought back memories to me, because I went on a school residential to an outdoor activities centre there over 50 years ago, when I was about 11.
We spent the week walking, and even though I was a country child, it seemed a very quiet and remote area even to me.

Aveline Tue 20-Feb-24 18:08:42

Such a lovely follow up to your family history research. It's fascinating as it's so personal. Thank you for sharing it with us.

Sago Tue 20-Feb-24 19:11:44

The farmer contacted us yesterday, she hadn’t found my husbands father/uncle or grandparents but she found his great Uncle and Aunt who had left a lovely poem, in exquisite handwriting.
We will definitely return later in the spring for a walk and the very lovely simple service.
It seemed so fitting after taking in the beautiful scenery to give thanks.

Bette72 Tue 20-Feb-24 19:45:49

Lovely to read your post,I'm from Hornsea myself and never hear it mentioned anywhere,I was only looking at old photos of our town the other day!

Sago Tue 20-Feb-24 20:28:20


Lovely to read your post,I'm from Hornsea myself and never hear it mentioned anywhere,I was only looking at old photos of our town the other day!

My husbands grandparents moved from Hull to Hornsea just before the war, they lived on Atwick Rd.
My in laws left London to settle in Hornsea and then moved to Sigglesthorne.
It’s a lovely town and seems to be going through a renaissance.
If only the railway line was still open.