Fair Scarborough

Our annual trip to Scarborough

I love Scarborough.  It has just about everything you want from a seaside town.  A harbour, a funfair, a pier.  A promenade, a sandy beach.  A castle, cliffs, wide vistas, fishing boats.  Chips, doughnuts, icecream, rock, candyfloss.  (Actually I hate candyfloss, but it’s an essential part of seaside nevertheless).  Cheesy gift shops, arcades, push-penny.

There’s a nasty little ancient voice in my head telling me I should disapprove.   Something from a long time ago, telling me it’s tacky and a bit disgusting – all that petty gambling and garish plastic and sugar.   I don’t disapprove of it though, and being a grown up, I can ignore that voice,  I can like whatever I damn well please!

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Truth is, enjoying being somewhere, for me, is more about what you do and who you’re with.  It doesn’t need to be perfect.  Or indeed, very good at all.  If I can spend a bit of time loitering, having a laugh, eating chip-shop chips on the street, walking on sand, people watching, that will do me. Champion.

But Scarborough is perfect.  I also like long lonely stretches of Northumberland beaches.  And wild, remote, inhospitable Hebridean beaches.  And hot sunny upmarket Mediterranean resort beaches.  But I like Scarborough because it is crowded, and mucky and cheesy and a bit down at heel.   I like it even when it’s raining and the seagulls have stolen my chips.

What we did

Where we stayed: The Miricia: a lovely little B&B.  Great customer service, clean, neat, comfortable and with a fantastic view over the North bay.  I wouldn’t have decorated it like that, but actually it’s very tastefully done and is co-ordinated, so we didn’t have any compulsion to move things around or repaint, which was handy for a colour-obsessive like me and a symmetry-obsessive like S.  It’s in my little black book now – would definitely stay there again.

Where we ate: haha, mostly chips.  From the fish and chip shop, Rennards I think, but I do lose my bearings in Scarborough.   I’m pretty sure they were cooked in veg oil because I didn’t get stomach cramps or feel sick after eating them.  Something completely perfect about eating chip shop chips on the street.

Where we drank: The Golden Ball.  Sam Smiths pub on the front.  Fab.  It’s our favourite pub, bar none.

Where we parked: car park beyond Peasholme Park, in the North bay.  It’s a pay and display.  You can catch a bus along the front if the long walk round to the South bay feels like a bit of a trek.

What new things we discovered: a tiny little Maritime Heritage Centre (45 Eastborough, Scarborough, YO11 1NH)  Kept us out of the rain for 10 minutes and was interesting into the bargain!  And the painter Atkinson-Grimshaw’s house.  He was from and mainly associated with our home town of Leeds, I didn’t know he lived in Scarborough.

atikinson grimshaw

The old things we love: Scarborough Market is going through some renovations at the moment.  It will be interesting to see it when it’s finished.  But in the meantime, there’s still a great record shop in the vaults downstairs along with lots of other little treasures, as well as a bakery, greengrocers and butchers and a café in the main hall.

3 thoughts on “Fair Scarborough”

  1. Love Scarborough , wish I went more. And don’t forget it now has a swanky large guitar shop, up a nice pedestrian street near the cable car. Unless you are left handed, in which case it’s pants. But nice pants!


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