Warsett Hill

The Guibal Fanhouse at Warsett Hill © Gareth Wilson

The Guibal Fanhouse at Warsett Hill

Warsett Hill is the highest point on the stretch of coast between Saltburn and Skinningrove. It is well worth climbing to enjoy the superb panoramic view of the coast and surrounding are that it offers.

The hill was the site of a Roman signal station built to defend the area against Anglo-Saxon attack, but most of the archaeological interest here is a little more modern.

To some it is a concrete eyesore. To others its simplicity of design makes it an impressive landscape feature. Whatever your view, the Huntcliffe Guibal fanhouse is certainly a fascinating reminder of the industry that was a major regional employer and led to the development of many of the area’s coastal communities.

The Guibal fanhouse was built around 1892. It was used for ventilating the ironstone mines whose tunnels criss-cross their way through the rock beneath Warsett Hill. The central section of the fanhouse contained a huge fan nearly 10 feet (3 meters) wide fan with an diameter a little over 26 feet (8 metres). It would rotate at a speed of 50 rpm, drawing air through the mine, allowing the miners to work deep underground.