In praise of a British seaside town

There is something about British seaside towns… every single one I have been to has made me happy. I particularly love a pier, why is that? Is it the excitement of walking over water, feeling that you are in the sea whilst being safely dry, or the perspective you get when looking back at the shore?

Love of piers (not Piers)

In order to answer this question I typed ‘Why do people love piers?’ into Google, only to get swamped with suggested articles about why everyone hates Piers Morgan so much. So I tried again, this time inserting the word ‘seaside’ before ‘piers’. Here is a link to a splendid article in The Independent about the British obsession with piers .

This article mentions one of my favourite piers, which is the starkly beautiful Hastings Pier. This was recently regenerated to be the coolest-looking pier I have ever had the pleasure of strolling down. Because you must stroll down a pier, marching would feel wrong.

Hastings happenings

The pier is just one of the many attractions of Hastings, one of my favourite seaside towns (but again, all seaside towns are my favourites, as I love them all!). The attractions of Hastings that thrilled me on my last trip are, in no particular order, its funicular railways. the Old Town, the Jerwood (art gallery), Kino Teatr (cinema and art gallery) and most spectacular of all, St Leonards Gardens.

The highlight of my trip was visiting friends who have the good fortune of living in Hastings all the time, and watching them feed peanut-butter sandwiches to badgers in their garden. Apparently, like me, badgers are partial to a peanut-butter sandwich. The only badgers I have ever seen in London are ones that have failed to make it across one of its many, busy roads.

Better than Brexit

Being able to easily take a short break to a British seaside town is one of the main benefits of living in this island nation, and something that even Brexit can’t take away from us. Sorry, I had to mention Brexit, but it is impossible to think of anything else these days as it is the only thing on the news. I hate to end what was supposed to be a positive, inspiring piece on the creativity that can be found in Hastings, on such a depressing note. 

But don’t blame me, blame the news editors on radio 4!