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At the bottom of each post there is the word "comments". If you click on it you will see comments made by followers, and if you follow the instructions you may also comment and I always welcome that. I have found many people overlook this part of the blog which is often more interesting than the original post!

My blog nick-name is SIR HUGH. I'm not from the aristocracy - my middle name is Hugh which relates to the list of 282 hills in Scotland compiled by Sir Hugh Munro in 1891. I climbed my last one (Sgurr Mor) on 28th June 2009


Wednesday, 26 February 2020

Following the coast (7)

Tues. 25th February 2020,  Rossall School (Wyre Way) to Starr Gate, Blackpool.
Aprox. 8.5 miles

Drove to Rossall School - walked to tram terminus, Starr Gate, South of Blackpool. Returned by perhaps my second Blackpool tram journey. I vaguely remember having a holiday in Blackpool with Mother and brothers circa 1946 and I suppose we must have journeyed on the tram at some point then. today I was impressed by this efficient, clean and comfortable transport.

These sea photos are worth clicking to enlarge

Starting out from Rossall. Blackpool Tower visible, centre horizon

Artwork on sea wall, and below

The "wild and wasteful ocean." I was wearing a base layer, a Rohan Explorer shirt, a lightweight hollowfill jacket and my Paramo Jacket, the latter with hood up and zipped to chin and I remained so cocooned for the whole walk. The wind was torturing the sea forcing huge foaming breakers and what appered to be full tide for the whole of the four hour walk. It was difficult to remember that this is an iconic, extensive beach, holiday venue - there was no sign of that today.

Gulls were active all the way with continuous mock ups of Battle of Britain dog fights.

Monument to hundreds of shipwrecks off this coast since 1643 - all the names are laser cut into the panel, also listed on engraved panel below

A monument listing the names of hundreds of shipwrecks

Norbreck Hotel. It is up for sale.
Note also the tramlines. I hadn't realised whilst walking how obtrusive the tramway infrastructure now appears on the photos.
The tower on left and North Pier Blackpool in distance

Blackpool Tower. Well I might have some viewers from abroad who  wouldn't recognise it?

Huge area of ceramic type flooring on the prom showing quotes from and listing all the entertainers. This appears to be an extremely well constructed feature

Rossall School. Full time boarding - £11,000 + (PER TERM) 


  1. The high spot of that holiday was taking the Knott End ferry. By our standards it was like moving into a different hemisphere.

  2. RR - So my trip both ways from Knott End on that ferry on 4th December 2016 whilst walking the Wyre Way must have been my second and third trips thereupon. My only other memory of the childhood visit is a vague one of leaving the station (Forster Square I think) in Bradford on the outward journey. Also I think the landlady may have been Mrs. Dawson?

    If you want to see the relevant post for 4/12/2016 and photos here is the link:

  3. Yes, here’s a reader from abroad who wouldn’t recognize it. But I recognize Blackpool, as in the Kinks’ “Autumn Almanac.”

  4. Michael Leddy - That has made my day. I am conscious of putting a caption under a photograph of an apple saying "apple" and my qualification on this occasion has paid off. I won't bore you with the tower history - you can always Internet search. Blackpool has for many years been the go-to holiday destination for those who revel in amusement arcades, joke shops, candy floss, heavy beer drinking, nausea creating fairground rides, the modern version of music hall entertainment, karaoke, stand up comedians, and sitting on the beach with hundreds of fellow aficionados. Having said all that it does promote for me a kind of guilty fascination (in small doses.)

    And until recent years our political parties used Blackpool for their annual conferences - here are some highlights from a BBC news item one of which which will have some particular interest for you:

    1976: The then Labour Chancellor Denis Healey arrived at the conference in Blackpool having applied for a loan to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to bail out the country
    1981: Conservative Norman Tebbit gave his 'Get on your bike' speech following riots in Toxteth and Brixton
    2002: American president Bill Clinton turned up to speak at the Labour conference and later popped out for a late-night snack with his actor friend Kevin Spacey
    2007: All major political parties move their national conferences out of Blackpool

    1. Thanks for the extra details, Hugh. Your description makes me think of the Jersey shore. Not sure though how the two places compare for late-night snacks.

  5. Your recent walk has a lot of interest, I did the identical one in December 2107, but as always you find something different and probably more insightful. We both, however, seem to revel in nostalgia.

  6. BC - Fascinating reading your account with all the similarities but more photos capturing a lot of what I have just written in my reply to M. Leddy above. I too 'held-on" for a pee eventually getting myself only half hidden behind a concrete stairway down to the sea somewhere south of the Pleasure Beach. I never saw the pay-for-you-to-go ones that you identified.

    Next stop Freckleton, as and when.

  7. Not sure what happens after Freckleton.
    Call in for coffee.

  8. BC - 8.5 miles to Preston Bus Station (or maybe the train station.). I could leave my car at Freckleton and bus back there from Preston. Using the train from Arnside to Preston then bus to Freckleton is another possibility. It gets more complicated after that. I would welcome a conference with you. I will keep watching for weather windows and trying to avoid other tiresome diary dates.

  9. BC - CORRECTION: approx 11.5 miles - (I'd missed the bit from Starr Gate tram terminus to St. Annes, which had been my intended destination on Tuesday, but "pauper spirit" had me abort at Starr Gate.

  10. Sir Hugh - I’ve never been to Blackpool so can’t comment on trams, ferries and the like but I do like your sea pictures. They remind me of a day last year in St. Andrews when the seas were higher and wilder than I’d ever seen them during the five years I lived there. A few hardy folk were swimming but I can’t imagine how they coped.

  11. Unfortunately, I can't gain much by clicking to enlarge the sea shots (my phone being my only browsing device), but from what I can make out your sea bore little resemblance to the one I can see out of Bertie's window just now!

  12. Gayle - Oh dear! No big pics. Perhaps if you kicked out the extra vac and one or two other non-essentials you could then accommodate a large screen iMac? The photos on your blog come out at a good size on my iMac and recent ones have been enticing - I notice they are all in a panorama, I.e. narrow oblong format?
    Michael L. - Ah! I forgot to mention the seedy looking fast food outlets - hot-dogs, pizzas, fish and chips, kebabs et al. At this time of year as one walks down the front everything is closed up except for maybe two little cafés and the odd place where some winter refurbishment is taking place but I prefer that to the clamour of the summer season.

  13. That sounds more and more like an American boardwalk, Sir Hugh.

  14. Then I'd just need to find room for the generator to power the iMac!

    My photos are usually in 18:9 (widescreen) format for two reasons: 1) it's the lowest resolution option my phone has; and 2) because that way they fill the whole of the screen on my phone, so I can see them better. I do sometimes switch to 4:3 if my subject fits better in that format. I'm glad they display okay on your big screen, as I often reduce them to under 100kB and have wondered if I'm making them fuzzy in so doing.

  15. Michael L. - Your boardwalk must be the same as our pier. There are about fifty of ours still remaining scattered round the coast from Victorian times at seaside holiday resorts - metal framework with wooden boarding walkways extending out into the sea with amusement arcades, ice cream kiosks, and sometimes theatres ( for light entertainment.) You may like to look at the comment from my brother RR in my more recent post (Following the coast 8) and my reply. He has his own much more intellectual blog and as a retired journalist and "active" writer a wilder imagination than me.


    Gayle - Well the large screen iMac idea can be consigned to history - I don't see you and Mick as generator people? If I were motorhoming I would consider one if it could be totally silent but of course that is just wishful thinking.