CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Yorkshire Life today CLICK HERE

The £1.2m makeover of Boggle Hole youth hostel, Robin Hood’s Bay

PUBLISHED: 00:00 31 July 2015 | UPDATED: 18:49 03 August 2018

Boggle Hole now lives up to its setting nestled in a beautiful coastal valley

Boggle Hole now lives up to its setting nestled in a beautiful coastal valley

Matt Selby Photography 2015

Beach bits and bobs are upcycled into artwork for the coast’s new-look youth hostel

Visitors, members and locals can now mingle in The QuarterdeckVisitors, members and locals can now mingle in The Quarterdeck

Driftwood, bottle tops and buoys might be beach debris to some, but for the imaginative people who run Boggle Hole youth hostel, they proved to be vital raw materials for a range of inspiring art projects.

Hostel managers Peta and Andy Nugent immediately saw their potential as idiosyncratic additions to the interior scheme of a £1.2m renovation project aimed at giving the much-loved centre in Robin Hood’s Bay a well-deserved makeover. So, they set to work with their team and, in the eight months it’s taken to complete the facelift, have upcycled a whole range of beach bits and bobs into lighting and artwork to add a distinct coastal swagger and style to the now unrecognisable hostel.

As a result of their foresight and efforts, Boggle Hole is now not only environmentally and financially sustainable, offering a secure long-term future for the hundreds of school groups, young people and families who stay there and visit each year, but also a welcoming haven with a character built in to every nook and cranny.

The extensive refurbishment of the 85-bed hostel was made possible by grants from the Coastal Communities Fund, Hostelling International’s Sustainability Fund and loyal Youth Hostel Association (YHA), all keen to see Boggle Hole survive and thrive.

At the recent grand reopening, a commemorative plaque was unveiled as permanent thank you to everyone who donated money, time and effort to give Boggle Hole a new lease of life

Staff threw a traditional seaside celebration to mark the reopening of the youth hostel, inviting 50 children from Fylingdales Primary School to enjoy a Punch and Judy booth, storytelling, ice creams, games, a coconut shy, a fortune teller, sandcastle competitions and, of course, fish and chips.

They were the first to see for themselves the transformation that has taken place, including the replacement of a dilapidated annexe, the creation of a new classroom and a complete refresh of the dining room, cafe and reception areas, leading to 12 new jobs.

Other improvements include: new onsite accommodation for staff; The Crow’s Nest annexe, an environmentally-friendly, timber-framed building; The Boat Shed, a new space for meetings or activities (for locals or visiting group); The Brigg, an overflow dining room with stunning sea views; and The Quarterdeck Café, now open to guests and the public.

‘Boggle Hole is simply stunning and epitomises the image change our association has undergone in recent years, making it appeal to a new generation of young people and their families,’ said Caroline White, chief executive of YHA.

‘We welcome thousands of young people to Boggle Hole every year, giving everyone, whatever their backgrounds, the chance to enjoy a fantastic educational and outdoor experience. Our investment will help the youth hostel become even more financially sustainable, securing its future for many more generations of guests and enabling YHA to regain a special place in people’s hearts.’

Managers Peta and Andy have looked after the youth hostel – and its numerous guests – for 23 years and are known and loved for their quirky designs and warm welcome.

‘Boggle Hole is one of the oldest, most-loved youth hostels in the UK,’ said Peta. ‘It has a rich history of mystery and adventure which reveals legendary stories of smugglers landing their treasure and then burying it in some of the hundreds of hidey-holes in the bay. It’s a truly magical place.’

It’s also home to the famous Boggle – the local name for a hobgoblin – and the story goes that if you leave a saucer of milk for the mythical creature, it will bless you with good fortune (or, at the very least, a clean saucer).

‘This is where the magic happens,’ said Peta. ‘We think of ourselves as memory makers. Andy and I both grew up by the sea and Boggle Hole is such a special place it brings so many people happiness and fond memories.’

It’s one of a growing number of youth hostels that have been refurbished since 2010 at a cost of £22m, earning YHA the title of Best UK Hotel in the 2014 Guardian Travel Awards, beating hotel chains Marriott and Radisson to the top spot.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Yorkshire Life visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Yorkshire Life staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Yorkshire Life account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from Out & About

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Bizarre shapes and many different sizes of rock make this as fascinating for walkers as it is for climbers

Read more
Pateley Bridge
Wednesday, November 7, 2018

We talk to the woman charged with keeping the National Railway Museum on track

Read more
Monday, November 5, 2018

In recent years, Harrogate has suffered from shop closures like any other town. It’s fighting back with various initiatives designed to bring in shoppers, tourists and businesses, reports Tony Greenway

Read more
Friday, November 2, 2018

The time is right to claim the South Pennines as England’s first regional park, say campaigners

Read more
Monday, October 22, 2018

The Yorkshire Dales market town of Settle has much to offer at the turn of the season, as Tony Greenway discovers

Read more
Settle Autumn
Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Is Doncaster soaring in the slipstream of success created by its award-winning airport?

Read more
Doncaster Sheffield
Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Thousands of people come through Ingleton every year to tackle the famous Yorkshire Three Peaks, but there are plenty of other walking options available in the area.

Read more
Thursday, October 11, 2018

Explore an historic North Yorkshire town and its countryside with some guidance from Richard Darn.

Read more
Wednesday, October 10, 2018

A grand upland walk without too much effort

Read more
Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Why the fascination with this popular village on the Yorkshire coast? Richard Darn goes exploring.

Read more

Topics of Interest

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad

Local Business Directory

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Property Search