Janice Issitt                    Life and Style

travel, interiors, photography, home, crafts, personal style

14 Aug 2013

Seaside Postcard

A Retro holiday for Retro people. 

For my birthday we popped to Broadstairs and Margate for two days and one night. These classic British seaside hoidays are exactly as they were in the 1960's when I spent every summer here in my relatives guest house. We got up early, packed the car and headed off in search of sand, seagulls and sea. 

Top left is Bleak House, Charles Dickens lived here, its now a hotel                
We stopped to look at the guest house that my mum's Uncle Tom owned to see that now it has a blue plaque. Not for my Uncle Tom and Aunty Ciss but for Oliver Postgate who wrote The Clangers and Bagpuss. I can't find any record of the date Oliver Postgate moved here but can only assume he may have bought the house from my Uncle Tom when they retired, or I'm confusing it with the house next door. 

My Mum, this may have been before I was born in the 50s
me on the beach just a couple of years ago. (1966 ish)

First stop was Morellis Ice Cream parlour where I went during my childhood holidays here. It first opened in 1932 and the decor is still the same as it was in the fifties. In 1968 I never stopped asking for money to put in the Juke Box to play "Those were the days" by Mary Hopkin.

as an 8 year old I thought this fountain was amazing !!!
this little girl was very brave to carry all these
 After eating a "Broadstairs Special" we didn't need to eat lunch, so we had a sit on the beach and took in the atmosphere.
While Charles Dickens lived here he wrote several books, we stayed in his bedroom at Bleak House which is now a hotel and right next door to our room was his study overlooking the sea. His original desk and chairs are still there.The bedroom now boasts "a bed which Queen Victoria slept in twice" when it was at another address in Rochester. 

In the evening we ate at Restaurant 54, which funnily enough was someones age, who, not me surely. Can highly recommend the food there. 

The Broadstairs Folk Week was in full swing so music was pouring out of every bar until the wee small hours, the bustling streets were full of Morris Dancers and lots of other strangely dressed types, we did actually run into a drunken sailor wearing a Pirates hat.

Queen Victoria slept in this bed twice !

Next day after a full english breakfast we headed for Margate. We checked out the new Turner Gallery and mooched about the town a bit. 
cupcake tea rooms

There is a lovely little area around Market Place full of Vintage shops and tea rooms. We loved Dolly Millers.
through the window of Dolly Millers

the owner of Margate Retro is quite a character 
 I had this memory for a magical place covered in shells. Somehow as an adult things don't look quite so incredible, but the Shell Grotto does have an interesting history, if only anyone knew what it was. It was discovered in 1832 and to this day it remains a mystery who built it, when or what it was for. Probably some kind of underground place of worship.

every bit of wall and ceiling is covered in a pattern made up from different shells
We could have stayed so much longer but maybe next time. So it's back on the diet for us two. Did I mention I also got a tattoo while we were there, ok, mid-life crisis etc. Its my first ever tattoo and I may talk about that some time, who knows.
Wishing we were all here but glad to be home with the cats.

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