A List of former YHA hostels

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mercalia
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A List of former YHA hostels

Postby mercalia » 22 Oct 2018, 12:21am

I came across this website by accident

A very sad list, many I have stayed at

http://www.geograph.org.uk/article/Former-youth-hostels-of-Great-Britain/1

Some missed? Nedging Tye, Castle Hedingham in Suffolk/Essex? Gt Yarmouth, Norwich, Kings Lynn in Norfolk so not a complete list

and here an historical article from 2006 how bad the closure was

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/4667126.stm

seems like the epping forest building is still there unused?

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robgul
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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby robgul » 22 Oct 2018, 7:05am

That brings back memories from when I was a member (and indeed Chairman for a couple of years) of Woodford & District YHA Group from 1962 - 69. Many of the Essex, Kent and Surrey hostels were regular weekend haunts ... and I was a volunteer helper at the Epping Forest hostel for a while.

To remember a few I stayed at : Cudham (my very first bed-night), Tanners Hatch, Ivinghoe, Holmbury St Mary, Kemsing, Crockham Hill, Houghton Mill, Ewhurst, Alfriston, Cambridge, Jordans, Idwal, Buttermere, Saffron Walden . . . those were the days.

Rob

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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby simonhill » 22 Oct 2018, 7:29am

As you are talking Essex, I'm surprised no one has mentioned Maldon. I never went there, but my school friend did with his 2 older brothers. It was usually the first stop on their tour.

It was about 25 miles away, which seemed such a long way to cycle to me in those far off days.

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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby brynpoeth » 22 Oct 2018, 7:35am

Some may be listed under other names, there were so many, some only opened for a few weeks or months, or appeared in the handbook but never opened

Not sad I think, I like lists of old hostels, engine names, cycle club names

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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby eileithyia » 22 Oct 2018, 8:26am

Looking at those I am shocked at the list of some hostels that I hadn't realised had closed. Am sure Tavistock is missing.
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robgul
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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby robgul » 22 Oct 2018, 8:31am

simonhill wrote:As you are talking Essex, I'm surprised no one has mentioned Maldon. I never went there, but my school friend did with his 2 older brothers. It was usually the first stop on their tour.

It was about 25 miles away, which seemed such a long way to cycle to me in those far off days.


Yep - forgot that one - the stamp would have been on my card :-) I can also recall staying at Beer in Devon and somewhere just near Bristol as well as one in the Brecon Beacons.

Have to admit that I very seldom cycled in those days - it was a train or "car assist" to get to the area - walk on the Saturday, overnight and walk until about 1530 Sunday before heading home. In the summer we moved towards more camping weekends, usually within about 100 miles of where I lived in West Essex.

Rob

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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby meic » 22 Oct 2018, 10:40am

The list is far from complete.
Off the top of my head I could add Brecon and Abergavenny.
If it is about the buildings, then Cardiff too as it moved to a newer building.
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horizon
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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby horizon » 22 Oct 2018, 11:17am

Unless it has already been linked to (perhaps by the OP in that first link), this is the document we need to refer to:

http://calmview.bham.ac.uk/GetDocument. ... 900003.pdf

What's interesting about this, is that it is far less tragic when you read about earlier closures because many (as brynpoeth pointed out) were temporary or makeshift hostels. And some of course had leases or arrangements which woud indeed run out in due course.

The real destruction took place in the 2000s (mainly after Foot and Mouth) when the whole idea of a youth hostel network of simple accommodation was replaced by a marketing-led chain of higher-priced Travelodge style outlets targetted at the well-off.
I have two doctors, my left leg and my right leg. (G. M. Trevelyan)
PS I always wondered why the YHA HQ was called Trevelyan House. :)

mercalia
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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby mercalia » 22 Oct 2018, 12:01pm

thanks for thatr list

There was a "yha" if you want to call it that just NW of Ipswich was a converted pigstye type building, never the less it served it s purpose and was sound enough. Any one remember its name?

I am still surprised that Norwich lost its hostel. Surly a place to visit with its cathedral and market and the broads nearby :roll:

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robgul
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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby robgul » 22 Oct 2018, 2:27pm

horizon wrote:Unless it has already been linked to (perhaps by the OP in that first link), this is the document we need to refer to:

http://calmview.bham.ac.uk/GetDocument. ... 900003.pdf

What's interesting about this, is that it is far less tragic when you read about earlier closures because many (as brynpoeth pointed out) were temporary or makeshift hostels. And some of course had leases or arrangements which woud indeed run out in due course.

The real destruction took place in the 2000s (mainly after Foot and Mouth) when the whole idea of a youth hostel network of simple accommodation was replaced by a marketing-led chain of higher-priced Travelodge style outlets targetted at the well-off.


That list and level of detail is amazing - I'm just imagining the compiler with an anorak loaded with badges and one of those old style Thermos flasks in cream with a cork stopper!

Rob

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mjr
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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby mjr » 22 Oct 2018, 4:14pm

horizon wrote:The real destruction took place in the 2000s (mainly after Foot and Mouth) when the whole idea of a youth hostel network of simple accommodation was replaced by a marketing-led chain of higher-priced Travelodge style outlets targetted at the well-off.

The King's Lynn ones are interesting: Warren Farm still exists and I think is up a sand track now outside the bypass; Thoresby College is a town-centre historic building which I think is all rented out privately now; there are even some of the railway carriages mentioned as a hostel-that-never-was that are still private homes around the borough (examples https://mapstreetview.com/#vf4wf_9b35_67.l_-6f28 and https://mapstreetview.com/#vbod6_72a9_2x_p_-3i07 ).

Of course, now Travelodge and Premier Inn are in the town with another site earmarked for a similar chain hotel (but I forget who), all with bike-friendly policies and various low offer prices, how many cyclists would still use an edge-of-town hostel even if one opened again, unless it was on a massive scale like the StayOKs?
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velorog
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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby velorog » 22 Oct 2018, 6:30pm

I still have my 1958 YHA Hostel map, purchased when I first joined the association at the age of 14. This being the minimum age you could stay at a hostel without being accompanied by an adult. The map shows 21 hostels within cycling distance of my home in the East Riding. This is now down to 8, two of which are new additions, and I can think of a couple which have opened and closed in the intervening period. If my maths is right this means 17 closures within 80 miles of here. A sad state of affairs, but one which reflects our changing society.

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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby thirdcrank » 22 Oct 2018, 6:40pm

No map but I joined the YHA when I was 13 in 1958 and that was the minimum age for hostelling without a parent. First bednight Malton now long gone. The hostel stamp included a picture of a pheasant.

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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby PH » 22 Oct 2018, 8:56pm

horizon wrote:The real destruction took place in the 2000s (mainly after Foot and Mouth) when the whole idea of a youth hostel network of simple accommodation was replaced by a marketing-led chain of higher-priced Travelodge style outlets targetted at the well-off.

The YHA has certainly changed and they're rarely my preferred option these days. I've enjoyed a good few on those now closed, around 30, some of them several times and many in the company of just a few other visitors. Even without Foot and Mouth they were dying.
According to the YHA the biggest single customer base is not the well off but school groups and the city hostels which make a profit to subsidise some rural ones attract a lot of foreign visitors. Not for me, but I'm not Y.

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Re: A List of former YHA hostels

Postby Mike_Ayling » 24 Oct 2018, 1:17am

horizon wrote:Unless it has already been linked to (perhaps by the OP in that first link), this is the document we need to refer to:

http://calmview.bham.ac.uk/GetDocument. ... 900003.pdf


The real destruction took place in the 2000s (mainly after Foot and Mouth) when the whole idea of a youth hostel network of simple accommodation was replaced by a marketing-led chain of higher-priced Travelodge style outlets targetted at the well-off.


Yes,

This is the trend here in Australia as well.
Mary and I have just stayed at Brisbane YHA in a private room with en suite at about the price of a budget motel.
The dormitory beds are about AUD30 per night whereas the backpacker hostels in the same street are <AUD20.
Mind you the facilities are good and the self catering kitchen was large and well equipped.

Mike