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Thread: Day Trips from London

  1. #1
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    Default Day Trips from London

    I had an interview the other day and I got the train out of London (which I always like doing - seeing the way the city kinda goes through all those flat spaces with towers, then industrial and commercial parks, then suburbs and finally drifts into countryside) and that, combined with the slightly improving weather, has put me in the mood for a day trip. I'm thinking preferably to the coast and preferably near London. I've not been to Margate or Whitstable or Herne Bay or even Southend for that matter - are they any good? It would only be for a day so it doesn't matter if it's kind of run down or faded, in fact, I sort of like that up to a point - some nice bleak beaches with old cafes could be good. Any art deco stuff to look at would be good. Also museums etc, at least one nice pub or somewhere to eat - preferably fresh stuff pulled out of the sea I guess. Off the beaten track - so much the better.
    So where shall I go?

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    Margate is pretty awful, but then I grew up in Kent, and it might well have some art deco stuff. Whitstable is a bit chi-chi these days, I hear, all oyster bars and the like. Herne Bay I associate with driving tests, but it looked pretty grim even aside from that. Folkestone's probably my favourite place on the Kent coast - cliffs, faded glamour, definitely a cut above.

    I always loved Brighton as a kid, for precisely that faded, sleazy aura - sadly that's been consigned to the past.

    I'm still planning a trip to Bradwell Chapel for the Spring - been planning it for about three years now....

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    The Isle of Wight! OK, it's a bit further and you have to cross the water, but a lot if it's really lovely - more scenic and rural in the west, the east has a number of towns that have that very specific sort of scruffiness that's unique to somewhat tired Victorian seaside resorts. There are some lovely pubs, lots of great walks and bike rides, nice beaches (the southwest coast is best for these), a pretty badass castle...journey time is something like 2-2.5hrs from Waterloo, depending on where you want to start from (on the Island, I mean*). And you can travel by hovercraft or hydrofoil, both of which must have felt like THE FUTURE in, oh, 1978. Maybe that's too far for a feasible day drip, I dunno.

    *ferries go from Lymington->Yarmouth in the west, Southampton->Cowes in the middle and Portsmouth/Southsea to Ryde/Fishbourne in the east.
    Last edited by Mr. Tea; 09-02-2011 at 12:17 PM.
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    "I always loved Brighton as a kid, for precisely that faded, sleazy aura - sadly that's been consigned to the past."
    I had a great holiday staying in a cottage midway between Hastings and Rye once - I imagine that Hastings may be a little like Brighton used to be. Not trendy but lively with arcades and fish and chip shops (of course) on the front and with a few kind of arty bits and delis and stuff.

    "I'm still planning a trip to Bradwell Chapel for the Spring - been planning it for about three years now"
    Where's that then? I've never heard of it.

    "The Isle of Wight!"
    Probably a bit too far for the moment - plus I'm keen to try all the nearer places that I've never visited.

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    Perhaps but I have heard (from someone who grew up there) that Hastings is a bit verging on horrible rather than just sleazy. Dunno though, not been there.

    Bradwell Chapel - http://www.bradwellchapel.org/ Looks/sounds amazing. I think there's an old thread on here about it, which may be how I know about it int he first place.

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    "Perhaps but I have heard (from someone who grew up there) that Hastings is a bit verging on horrible rather than just sleazy. Dunno though, not been there."
    That's what everyone says when I say that I had a good holiday there. And true enough I think that an immigrant was beaten to death there soon after our holiday came to an end. On the other hand, it has got a funicular.


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    Yeah, the Island's probably better to visit if you can stay a night or two, though of course that ratchets up the cost considerably.

    Edit: Hastings features prominently in Crap Towns...
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    "Hastings features prominently in Crap Towns..."
    The people who owned Green and Blacks (before it was sold to Cadbury's) moved there and set up a kind of alternative health centre thing which was why we went - my girlfriend at the time was keen to do a load of the stuff they had there. I just wandered around while she was doing pilates or some shit.
    The old town is lovely, the new town is hideous and the seafront is, for my money, that sleazy mix that Baboon is after. Some good restaurants there, bookshops, antique bric-a-brac stuff - I honestly thought it was great.
    Just down the coast you've got Bexhill with the absolutely amazing De La Warr Pavilion - and loads of old people's homes. Think Spike Milligan said of Bexhill "You can look out to sea and see the continent, look the other way and see the incontinent". Or something.

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    Frinton is really nice. The beach is perfect, and pretty vast, so it hardly ever gets busy. However shops and pubs are pretty sparse, so I think itís more of a family destination, as you would just take supplies with you for the whole day. Mind you it does have a town, with a pub and some shops, canít remember if it was any good or not now though.

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    Oh and as a kid, Black gang chine was like the best thing ever when we went to IOW. Loads of kids your age + Cap guns and (what seemed like) unlimited caps + old western style shooting gallery = best holiday of my life.

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    this is a great idea for a thread. aside from going to brighton to see mates there i haven't been to any seaside towns for years. have fond memories of frinton, walton on-the-naze and clacton from when i was a kid, though i did spend most of my time in the arcades while i was there. the only other place i've been to in recent memory was weymouth about six years ago and that place was fucking horrible, but it's not near London so you're ok.

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    i seriously need to put my MPC down for one sec and do one of these trips soon. kinda embarrassed about not having seen much of the UK.

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    I seem to remember having a good time at Weymouth once - or was it Bournemouth? Actually, think it was a daytrip by coach from my home village in Oxfordshire to Weymouth - basically spent the whole day in the pub and on the crappy rides - ghost train etc. I reckon that any kind of cheap rides definitely improve a seaside town - which is the one that has the legendarily bad waxworks? Also, a pier is good.
    A bit harder to find, I'd love to see some art-deco stuff by the sea front, any suggestions for that?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by nochexxx View Post
    i seriously need to put my MPC down for one sec and do one of these trips soon. kinda embarrassed about not having seen much of the UK.
    Woah, stay focused man. I watched that shit doc about J Dilla the other day & his beatmaking obsession reminded me of you. Do you want to be the next Dilla or do you want to see Frinton? Keep your eyes on the prize bro.

    That said, Southwold is lovely.

  15. #15
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    Yeah, keep working Dave (and Pete for that matter), leave it to us non-creative types to savour the dubious delights of England's Eastern coast.

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