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Welcome to Flamborough Marine Limited          THE HOME OF THE GANSEY

The classic striped
Breton shirt

Your source for authentic hand-knitted Ganseys, Gansey Knitting Kits, Armor Lux pure cotton striped Breton shirts plus a range of quality, pure wool, traditional knitwear from Le Tricoteur (the original Guernsey sweater) and Armor Lux of France.


   [contact us on 01262 850943 for further information]



NEW: A classic scarf in Fine Pure Wool to complement your Gansey

 

 

Filey Gansey

 

A classic Filey Gansey

 

 

 

Flamborough Marine :

 

Flamborough Marine commenced trading in 1981. Initially the stock consisted of readily available machine-knitted sweaters of a traditional design (for example, Guernseys, Alderneys and Bretons). As an antique shop was also run from the same premises we began to receive inquiries for ‘antique sweaters’, that is, the hand-knitted Ganseys which were once so much a feature of the fishing communities, but which had become generally unavailable. We contacted a long-time resident of Flamborough, Nora Woodhouse, who knitted our first Ganseys (from memory) in several different North-East Coast patterns. She had originally been taught to knit Ganseys before the war by her fisherman father after her mother had been drowned at Robin Hood’s Bay. From Nora’s Ganseys we were able to make charts of the patterns which, beforehand, had never normally been written down but, rather, were passed on by word of mouth.

 

 

 

 

Robin Hood's Bay Gansey worn by a Victorian Fisherman

 

A Robin Hood's Bay Gansey worn by a Victorian Fisherman

 

 

 

Our idea was two-fold. First to offer an outlet for the sale of Ganseys once we had recruited knitters; and second, to package a kit containing the wool, needles, and our own charts so that the art of Gansey knitting could be spread even more widely and not limited to those within our immediate vicinity. As the first step in this plan we advertised for experienced knitters who might be interested in knitting with five steel needles and showed them what we wanted. Of the hundred initial replies only ten decided to persevere. We supplied these first ten with needles, wool, charts and instructions and began to build up a stock of Ganseys. During the succeeding years some knitters have dropped out and others have taken their places. One thing however has remained constant and that is the premises in Flamborough where the various Ganseys are displayed. We believe that we offer the only outlet for the authentic finished product. Without this outlet the knitters would have nowhere to sell their wares and the art of Gansey knitting (for, although a craft, the work itself is so intricate as to be rightly called an art form) would again be in danger of disappearing.

 

Shown at right:

A Flamborough Gansey

in dappled sunlight

Flamborough Gansey

Experienced knitters required

   

 

A Sheringham pattern from Norfolk in Dark Navy

 

 

Filey Steps & Cables pattern in Falmouth Navy

Flamborough Gansey in Ocean Deep colour 5-ply wool

 

Flamborough Gansey in Ocean Deep colour 5-ply wool

Flamborough Gansey in Denim colour 5-ply wool

 

 

Flamborough Gansey in Denim colour 5-ply wool

 

 

A specially commissioned Gansey
in a variant of the Flamborough pattern

A side-on view of the Flamborough pattern variant

 

 

 

 

A Scottish Fleet pattern

 

 

 

 

A Scottish Fleet pattern (side view)

 

 

 

Flamborough pattern in Herring Girl Pink

 

 

Flamborough pattern in Herring Girl Pink

   





NEW: A classic scarf in Fine Pure Wool*

 

 

The Perfect Finish to your Gansey

 

 

* Fisherman would wear wool due to its ability to stay warm when wet

 

 

Approximate Dimensions: 27 inches x 70 inches (70cm x 180cm)    Price: 45.00





 

 

Hans and Thomas Heyer in their Ganseys at the Flensburg Regatta

An article in "Classic Boat" magazine, which featured our Ganseys, resulted in queries and orders from around the world. In Bielefeld, Germany Iris Heyer noticed the article, showed it to her husband, and we soon received a telephone call from Thomas Heyer, to order a Flamborough Gansey. A few weeks after it arrived, Thomas' brother Hans saw the Gansey and was hooked! Hans ordered a Filey Gansey. And here they are, proudly wearing their Ganseys at the Rum-Regatta in Flensburg, a Regatta for traditional Sailing boats which is held each year in the North of Germany. The Ganseys proved to be immensely useful, fighting cold temperatures and wind forces up to 6 on the Beaufort scale!

In the photograph, taken by Iris, the Filey Gansey on the left is worn by Hans, and, at right the Flamborough Gansey worn by Thomas. (The photograph was kindly supplied by Hans, who added: "It is great that you took the effort in reviving this old knitting craft and our admiration goes to the knitters for their skills!")

 

 

In addition to supplying Ganseys such as those above, we also sell Gansey Knitting Kits, to knit your own. Each Kit contains 5-ply worsted Guernsey wool, a set of five double-ended 2.5 mm steel needles, individual body and sleeve charts, and full instructions for the pattern of your choice. A copy of the fully illustrated soft-back book "Patterns for Guernseys, Jerseys & Arans" by Gladys Thompson is also available as an optional extra.

 

Taking advantage of this, keen knitter Brenda Duthie has produced a beautiful example, shown at right, using one of our Kits with Amethyst 5-ply wool. As she noted in the letter accompanying the photograph, "This is a female from Fraserburgh wearing her Fraserburgh Gansey at Fraserburgh harbour beside a Fraserburgh boat!"

 

 

Experienced knitters required

We were approached by Canadian film and television actor, artist and musician, Rajiv Surendra with a commission for a Gansey based on little more than an old photograph in a reference book. Using the expert knowledge of our longest-serving knitter, Marion, we were able to produce the exquisite garment shown at left, worn (and loved) by Rajiv. This stunning Gansey demonstrates what our knitters are capable of; but, as a special commission, this particular pattern cannot be repeated. So successful was this first commission, that it led to a second, shown below.

 

Rajiv Surendra's Gansey


Not just a craft,

 

but a work of art.

 

 

Rajiv Surendra's Gansey

Rajiv Surendra's Gansey

 

We offer an extended range of beautiful colours in 5-ply worsted Guernsey wool, including the unusually named “Herring Girl’s Pink”, shown at left  in the Scarborough pattern, knitted by Melanie Jones, who kindly sent the photograph, taken on the ferry returning from the Isle of Jura.

   

A surprise was in store for David Wright when he visited our shop in Flamborough on Father's Day, accompanied by his daughters. Waiting for him was the Scarborough Gansey previously ordered and knitted by one of our skilled knitters. A thrilled Mr Wright  could not wait to try his Gansey on (complete with tag) and kindly consented for us to use the photograph at left.

 

 

Staithes

 

Staithes pattern

 

available in ribbed welt or split welt (the patterned, split welt can be seen on the What is a Gansey? page)



Polperro Gansey

Polperro Knit-Frock

 

While the majority of Gansey patterns are to be found in Yorkshire and the North-East Coast of England, other patterns originate from Cornwall and East Anglia. Shown at left is a beautiful Cornish Knit-frock in the Polperro design.


   

 

Humber Keel pattern in Navy

 

 

 

Scarborough pattern in Dark Navy


 

Hand-knitted Gansey-patterned Beany hats in a range of colours : 35.00 each

 

Hand-knitted Beany (Beanie)



Ned Cross of Flamborough

 

The photograph above shows Jack Cross of Flamborough mending his pots. The photograph was taken shortly before Jack and his two eldest sons were drowned at North Landing, Flamborough on Friday 5 February 1909 while trying to land their catch in a gale. The photograph was kindly donated by the third son, the late Mr Edward Cross, who is the small boy standing in the cottage doorway behind his father.

 



Bempton Cliffs
One of the most prominent features on the East Coast of England, Flamborough Head juts out five miles into the North Sea. It is the most northerly chalk outcrop and the largest sea-bird breeding colony in England. The village, in the centre of the headland, is exposed on three sides to the sea and to the constant wind. It was to help protect against these elements that the Ganseys were first produced, hundreds of years ago. Then they were fashioned, as they still are today, by the knitters of Flamborough Marine, entirely in one piece using five steel needles.

Bempton Cliffs at Flamborough Head, site of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds reserve. The chalk cliffs here are a sheer 300 feet drop into the North Sea.


 
This is our most detailed site, however, we also have two separate sites, one for Flamborough Marine in general, and one for Armor Lux specifically, which have been optimized for viewing on smaller screens

 

 

Detailed information on our various products is available on this site. However, we also have a separate Flamborough Marine web-site, which has been optimized for viewing on smaller screens, and is available by clicking the image above.

 
 

Information on our Armor Lux range is available on this site. However, we also have a dedicated Armor Lux web-site, which has been optimized for viewing on smaller screens, and is available by clicking the image above.

 


Ganseys were used at Trafalgar

The print at right, showing a fisherman running through the streets of a small northern fishing village shouting "All hands man the Life-Boat!" is dated 26 November 1887. The fisherman is clearly wearing a Gansey which, upon closer inspection, is almost certainly that of the Cullercoats Rocket Brigade.


Over a century later, the same pattern can be knitted, and in the same method, all-in-one piece, on five needles, in the finest quality 5-ply worsted wool. If the fisherman returned today, he would find a few things still familiar in Flamborough, and much that was alien. The fishing boats (known locally as "cobles") would still be instantly recognizable, as would Flamborough lighthouse and, if he walked into the premises of Flamborough Marine, upon my soul, he would find a match for his own Gansey.

Cullercoats Rocket Brigade

 

 

Download our catalogue :

Download the current Flamborough Marine catalogue in Adobe PDF format [file size 1.5 mb].
To download, right click the following link: PDF CATALOGUE  and select [Windows]: "SAVE TARGET AS".
Please note that, to be viewed, the catalogue requires Adobe Acrobat Reader (available as a free download from Adobe.com).

 

 

 

Flamborough Lighthouse

Flamborough Marine Limited

 

Traditional Knitwear & Hand-Knitted Ganseys

 

The Manor House
Flamborough
Bridlington
East Riding of Yorkshire YO15 1PD
United Kingdom

Telephone: 01262 850943

International: +44 1262 850943

 

E-mail:  gm@flamboroughmarine.co.uk

 

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