Whitby Folk – Westcliff Congregational Church

Whitby is full of interesting people. Through their daily work they help keep the town ticking and help make it a great town to visit.

Shoreline Cottages has interviewed a number of these ‘Whitby folk’ to find out why they love the town so much and how they think it’s changed. Today we meet Rev Mark Ladds, the Minister of Religion at Westcliff Congregational Church, a warmhearted evangelical and reformed church, affiliated to the Evangelical Fellowship of Congregational Churches (EFCC).

What is your name?

Rev. Mark Ladds

What is you job title?

Minister of Religion. That is a preacher of the Gospel. I love sharing this good news – I get to proclaim the message of salvation through Jesus alone. The current church building has been here for 150 years and was a hub of Whitby. We have many records of them, for example, caring for the poor and needy in Whitby simply by providing coal to many who lived in the ‘CRAG’.

Do you mind telling us how old you are?


Have you lived in Whitby all your life?

No. I moved here 11 years ago to minister to the church. I’m originally from The Fens, Whittlesey.

What do you love most about Whitby?

Whitby is a lovely place. I like the scenery, the people, the beach and the moors. I love it and them.

What do you like least about Whitby?

I would say I miss the bigger shops. I understand Whitby is geared up for tourism but therefore suggest it needs better parking facilities provided. Also public toilets. It used to be a saying “to spend a penny” but now 40p.

What has changed in the town over the past 10 years or so?

The increase in tourism for sure.

Do you have any children?

Yes, I have 5 children. 2 have left Whitby but 3 of them still live here – 2 of which have married and had children of their own.

In your spare time what do you like to do?

I enjoy fishing on the cliffs with friends and also shooting, beating and spending time in the countryside with my dogs.

Will you ever leave Whitby?

Honestly, you never know. It depends if the Lord wants to keep me here or move me to another church; although I could easily enjoy serving this community the rest of my days on this earth.