RUNSWICK BAY has just won the Sunday Times’ Beach of the Year accolade – but how do you properly pronounce its name?

“Our winner for 2020 is close to perfection, with pods of bottlenose dolphins often spotted on the horizon plus fossil-hunting and rock-pooling on the seemingly endless sands,” said the Sunday paper, but it avoided the big question: is Runny really sick?

Peter Sotheran writes from Redcar: “Now that you have laid down the 'gospel version' of Chop Gate/Yat, what is the approved pronunciation of Staithes? Is it Staithes as it is written, or 'Steeres' as the locals allegedly prefer it?

“And while we are about it, may I have a ruling on Runswick Bay – is the 'w' silent or not?”

Before we pronounce judgement, any guidance would be very welcome. Please email