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Things to do in Mablethorpe, Lincolnshire

Lonely, colourful beach hut in Mablethorpe.
Mablethorpe Beach Hut ©Shutterstock /Martin Parratt

Mablethorpe is a small coastal town in Lincolnshire, midway between Skegness and Cleethorpes.

It has been in existence for centuries, but a large part of the town fell into the sea in the 1540s. In 1953 the town again suffered from the disastrous East Coast Floods when a storm tide breached the coastal defences.

Mablethorpe Hall is recorded in the 14th century as the home of the Fitzwilliam family. It can still be seen on the Alford Road to the west of the town.

In the 19th century Mablethorpe was the centre for ship breaking, when old ships were broken up for recycling.

In 1883 the first lifeboat station was opened and it operated until World War I when it was closed as there was not enough manpower to offer a full crew. In 1965 an inshore lifeboat replaced it and a new lifeboat station was built.

It was once the home of RAF Strubby which was situated on the A157, said to be one of the windiest roads in the UK, as it zigzags wildly for about 10 miles to Louth.

In 2004 Bambers wind farm opened and now has a total of 14 wind turbines producing electricity. The Theddlethorpe Gas Terminal is nearby.

Aerial shot of Mablethorpe, Lincolnshire, England
Aerial View ©Shutterstock /Ian Bracegirdle

Present Day Mablethorpe

Mablethorpe has two small supermarkets and several convenience stores serving the population of just under 12,000 people. Other local services can be found in the town along with independent retailers, two banks and several gift shops.

The main church in Mablethorpe is the parish church of St Mary’s. There are two primary schools and a secondary school.

Mablethorpe has a number of caravan parks around the town and several pubs and fish and chip shops cater to local trade. The Old Dunes Theatre closed in 2008 and is now the home of Sharky’s Bar.

Mablethorpe has a couple of claims to fame. It was visited by Alfred Lord Tennyson in the 19th century and was mentioned in D.H. Lawrence’s novel Sons and lovers in 1913 as the destination for the Morel’s holiday cottage, said to be rented for thirty shillings a week (£1.50).

Things to Do Around Mablethorpe

The main attraction is Mablethorpe’s long sandy beach. The wide flat sands are separated from the town by a section of sand dunes. The firm sand is ideal for sand racing and watching the motorcyclists compete is free.

Lonely donkey in Mablethorpe
Lonely Donkey ©Shutterstock /wheatley

The seafront also has a funfair and numerous amusements. Skateboarders can enjoy the skatepark which has a funbox, two quarter pipes and a spine, for those in-the-know.

Every year the Bathing Beauties Festival is hosted in September. It is the longest linear coastal arts festival in the world and includes music, poetry, art, drama and a Fire Parade which attracts over 25,000 visitors.

Although Mablethorpe’s railway was closed in 1970, visitors can ride on the miniature railway which has survived and runs in Queen’s Park or enjoy a trip on the Sand Train which runs to the north end of the beach.

There is a Seal Sanctuary nearby which is home to many orphaned and rescued seals with some excellent exhibits and birds of prey.

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