We start today at Arnside, a small seaside village in South Cumbria, where the wide estuary of the River Kent enters Morecambe Bay. From the promenade, with its small shops, you can look across the bay to the Lakeland hills.
When I was a child, we had several holidays at a guest house at Arnside. It operated on a ‘house-party’ basis, with a ‘host’ who arranged social activities during the day and informal entertainment in the evening. Often the same people came each year, and so we renewed friendships each summer. One summer, my parents acted as hosts for the week, and I felt very important when they let me give out quiz sheets, or when I was given a part to play in an evening concert.
I used to love playing on the beach and paddling, buying ice-cream at one of the small shops on the seafront, and watching the fishermen on the small stone pier.
We used to go for guided walks during the day, often in the woods on Arnside Knott, a 520ft flat-topped wooded hill which overlooked the village. If the weather was clear, the view was fantastic.
The tide comes in very fast from the bay into the river, and sirens go off before high tide each day. Sometimes, if there was a very high tide, especially in spring, we saw a spectacular tidal bore coming up the river.