Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Northumberland Coast Path - day 4

Tuesday 20th September '16 - Caster to Seahouses

The Cottage Inn last night was a strange single story, architecturally challenged building. Judging from the surroundings I reckon there had been a grand country house there before.

I had passed a large stone gateway like the entrance to a country park on my way there with part of one side demolished, and barriers round - the reason for the closed road. Returning this morning there was a stonemason and his van. He explained that an elderly lady had blacked out in her car, fortunately without serious injury. He was there to do specialist repairs on account of it being a listed building.

I was soon onto cropped turf and enjoying early morning sun with views of Dunstanburgh Castle, built in the 1300s and now a spectacular ruin with plenty left to see.

There was more fast beach walking and several golf courses all in continued glorious sunshine. There is no doubt I am walking much faster than I was on the SWCP a few weeks ago. I walked solidly for over three hours none stop just enjoying the day and eventfully found the Salt Water Café at Beadnell - two pots of tea and a large slice of coffee cake. Here I took stock and found I was only about three kilometres from my destination at Seahouses, so I dawdled and took advantage of their wifi. The next section was disappointingly alongside the busy B1340, but just before Seahouses a path lead across another golf course to enter into the town pleasantly by the harbour.

The Old Ship Inn has been family owned for years. It is attractively furnished and everything themed for the sea, but all in excellent taste - a real gem of a traditional English Inn. Upstairs there is a gallery laid out as a marine museum with high class models of ships in glass cases and many seagoing artefacts - fascinating. My room is set out like captain's cabin on board a luxury yacht. I must emphasise that all this is well done and in no way tack y. I have high hopes of my meal .

This walk has so far been thoroughly enjoyable.

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Back from the meal now. The menu was traditional with no unique options, but the steak and ale "pie" (roof of puff pastry on top) was really very good of its genre, and a plum and almond sponge pudding with custard was like Mother's home baking. I was sat next to a couple from Sheffield celebrating their 57th wedding anniversary. Excellent conversation about how they met, his national service and his job as a copy writer on the Sheffield local paper in the good old days when they had different local editions snd several editions a day - the mind boggles, but that's how it was with the old Bradford Telegraph snd Argus.

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2 comments:

Humphrey said...

Well, Conrad, you're by now very close to my home turf, and here's a couple of ideas for when you're in Berwick-upon-Tweed, if you're in the humour . . .

I understand that you enjoy a good meal - I'd recommend the restaurant at the Maltings Arts Centre and Cinema, which is only a couple of hundred metres uphill from your end-point (that's distance, not ascent!). David Foxton does a very wonderful menu, with all manner of delights, and the room has a wonderful view over the rooftops and the estuary.

The Maltings is the lead venue for the Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival - http://www.berwickfilm-artsfest.com/ - which runs from today through Sunday 25. Now in its eleventh year, there's a wide range, from straight narrative to installations. "With ambitious programming including film premieres, moving image installations and live performance, the annual Festival spans 12 locations across its walled, border-town home of Berwick-upon-Tweed."

And if you've the time, do take a walk around the walls - Berwick is the only completely contiguously walled town in the UK. Chester and York are but echoes . . .

Very much hoping to finally meet you if you'll be in Leyburn at the end of October.

Sir Hugh said...

Humphrey - welcome to the blog. Thanks for the info. Unfortunately I will arrive Berwick circa midday on Friday and need to be back home then asap.

I look forward to meeting you at Leyburn.