Baytown was the 18th century locals’ name for Robin Hood’s Bay.
The village’s hidden location on the edge of moor, cliff and sea made it a perfect smuggler’s hideaway.
For over 100 years from the early 1700s, Baytown became a place of smuggling legends. The government put large taxes on imported goods like silk, tea, gin and brandy. Others sought to avoid these taxes by smuggling the goods into the country unseen.
In Baytown this led to scenes where smuggling gangs fought with Revenue officers over contraband. The press gang arrived to fight with the village men and women whilst trying to try kidnap the men.
The local squire connived with everyone. Even the famous preacher John Wesley may have unwittingly benefitted from the proceeds of Baytown’s smuggling.
Hidden tunnels and secret passages led to moorland tracks and with the passing of time, Baytown grew to enjoy the fruits of its inhabitants’ labours.
Raise a glass to these smuggling memories. And then why not visit Baytown to see for yourself where and how these memories were made? You can even join a guided smuggler’s tour and beer tasting if the timing is right.