The spring seems to have vanished for the moment, and when we went on an outing to Dungeness and Camber Sands with our old friend Bill, it was very cold and windy.We started at Camber Sands, and puffed over the dunes to show Bill the expanse of beach. It was deserted except for a party of shivering French schoolchildren, kicking stones disconsolately.
We often visit Camber Sands in the summer with grand daughter (see previous post), park up by the cafe and beach-goods shops and get into the traditional scene of windbreaks, castle building and sand in the sandwiches. It is the archetypal sunny sandy holiday beach, even if you do have to walk half way to France to get the water above your knees, and it is often very windy.
After the beach, we called in for a coffee at the Gallivant across the road. This place features in up-market seaside and lifestyle magazines, in lists of top seaside eateries and hotels etc., so Battleaxe wanted to see what it was like. The bar area was very attractive and cosy, with comfy sofas, furry seats, lots of papers, board games etc. The coffee was good, and they served us a slice of excellent lemon gateau. Looking at the menus, they do lunch at around £15 for two courses, which looked good - we'll come back and try that.
|The Gallivant - nice furry chairs|
The huge shingle spit is a protected National Nature Reserve, home to all sorts of rare plants, birds, insects etc. We didn't see a single living thing, and only the beginnings of plant life. It was freezing cold with a biting wind - so un-springlike. For us, the most interesting things are from human intervention - there are two lighthouses, a nuclear power station, the Romney, Hythe and Dymchurch Railway, all sorts of strange little houses including Derek Jarman's cottage with its garden made with found objects. Above all though, when you look across the flat landscape, it is dotted with rusted, abandoned things - strange metal winches, machines and chunks of metal, broken boats, twisted railway lines and collapsed huts.
|Broken boat - Dungeness|
|Broken boat - Dungeness|
|Dungeness - looking across to the Power Station|
The most famous inhabitant of Dungeness was Derek Jarman, the film maker. Although Jarman died in 1994, his garden at Prospect Cottage has been well preserved by the current owners of the house.
|Prospect Cottage - Derek Jarman's former home|
|Prospect Cottage garden|
|Old Lighthouse, Dungeness|
I also see on the web site that you can book tours of the power station. Battleaxe will definitely be doing that - watch this space!
|Dungeness Power Station|
|Lovely little engine|
|I like the Brasso!|
|Ready to leave - with the new lighthouse in the background|
|The Pilot Inn - heaving|
|Those fish and chips..... and that was only the medium size.|
Aha... I see from the web site that the big draw here is not sun, sea and sand but pike fishing, on the little lakes behind the caravans. They do week-long fishing and caravan packages for £350, which still seems a lot. Those poor pike must be very special. Ah well, each to their own.
What a lot Battleaxe learns from blogging.
|I don't think so....|
|Good pylons, though.|