This was once a sea animal and, although now extinct, is related to today’s octopus and squids. Now just the shell remains and has turned to rock.
Loftus born fossil hunter Lewis Hunton (1814 – 1838) was the first man to detail how ammonites differed in layers of the cliffs formed about 180 million of years ago in the Jurassic.
When Saxon Abbess Hilda founded Whitby Abbey in 657AD she is said to have cast snakes from the Abbey site and over the cliffs. The snakes curled and turned to ammonites on the rocks below. Now we know ammonites are not snakes turned to stone but fossilised relatives of squid.