Saturday, 8 September 2012

Go to Dungeness...

Dungeness | Athlete

“You’re in Dungeness on holiday?!”

So came the rather incredulous comment from one of my friends when I tagged myself on Facebook (or rather, tagged my gorgeous Knickerbocker Glory) at The Pilot Inn, Dungeness, in a rare moment of internet connection earlier in the week. My friend favours a more Mediterranean clime for her holidays, so her disbelief was understandable.

Scrummy cod, chips 'n' peas

Even scrummier Knickerbocker Glory
“I love it here!” was my response. And 'tis true: I love the bleakness of the marshes in Romney, the proximity (and then lack of proximity) of the sea; the tacky shops, the pubs, the mud banks, Derek Jarman’s ‘Prospect Cottage’ with its once-whimsical garden…

the lighthouses, and the smell of the steam from the miniature Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway. The unpredictability of the weather (I got sunburned on Monday, quite badly – good result despite the threat of melanoma…).

Early-morning sun on the sea

Oh and let’s not forget the power station.

 My parents brought us to Littlestone when we were children; we rented a bungalow on the coast road for a week or two in the mid-1980s and my mother holidayed here in the 1950s.

I have a photo (somewhere in the QB annals) taken from the top of the Old Lighthouse of our car at the time, and my mum waving up at us; photos of us riding the donkeys, reclining in the sand dunes, splashing about on dinghies, schlepping through the mud, crouching in a hut in the Philippine Village. We have collective memories of walking through teeming rain to the arcades. Good, good times!

I do like a hot, sunny holiday (and for that I’m off to Spain in a couple of weeks) but there’s something to be said for a good old-fashioned British break especially on the coast. I’m definitely happier by the sea, and I’ve come to love the British tackiness of it all.

We hired a house in Lydd from the parents of one of my workmates; situated right on the marshes, within good walking distance of the beach (though it took us another good twenty-five minutes to find the sea on Sunday morning at low-tide…). We were forty-five minutes’ walk from the lighthouses, and the aforementioned power station. And never far from a pub or a Spar. 

And we even had a swim. Yes, a swim. In the British sea in September. Climate change is no myth, people. (That said, it was freezing in places. FREEZING.)

The old lighthouse

Narrow Gauge tracks of the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway

Here comes the train!

Fifth Quarter "Mystcal" Gift Shop on the marshes...

The new lighthouse (not actually on the wonk in real life)
Requisite bleakness. <3

The sound Mirrors, built in the 1930s to detect the sound of enemy aircraft...

Carole Ann, the boat of my photographic fantasies.

That mint-green. Love.

The Jeniray

Roped in.
Beach huts of different hues

RHDR station in the evening light

Sunset behind the old lighthouse


  1. It was delicious! :) Thank you for your comment!

  2. Thank you, lovely! :) Have a great time with Kasia! x