Largest earthquake to hit UK in decade felt off North Yorkshire coast

The largest earthquake to hit Britain for almost a decade was felt off the coast of North Yorkshire on Tuesday night.

The tremor measuring 3.9 happened in the North Sea almost 100 miles east of Scarborough at 6.50pm, the British Geological Survey (BGS) said.

It is the biggest earthquake in Britain since 2008, when a 5.2-magnitude tremor hit Market Rasen in Lincolnshire, which was felt as far away as Wales, Scotland and London.

It is unclear whether the North Sea tremor caused any damage to buildings on the UK mainland or what caused it.

The tremor had a depth of 11 miles and struck about 93 miles off the coast of Scarborough, according to the BGS.

Experts at the BGS said earthquakes on the east coast of the UK were relatively rare: “Earthquakes are almost completely absent from eastern Scotland and north-east England. Similarly, Ireland is almost completely free of earthquakes. The North Sea is more active than the mainland.”

The largest known British earthquake occurred near the Dogger Bank in 1931, with a magnitude of 6.1.

It was 60 miles offshore but was still powerful enough to cause minor damage to buildings on the east coast of England.