Cleethorpes and Grimsby

The week after the trip to Southwold we drove up to Cleethorpes to see my folks for the Bank Holiday weekend.

It’s a fair old way from the Isle of Dogs to Cleethorpes, about 180 miles, but we made good time on the journey up there on the Friday evening,

On the Saturday morning we had a walk around Cleethorpes followed by lunch at the Ocean Fish Bar, and in the afternoon drove to Grimsby Docks to take some photos.

Grimsby Docks and Dock Tower

We didn’t manage to find our way to the actual dockside but did spend some time wandering around the Fish Market area and the fish processing buildings.

At the weekend, the docks are pretty much deserted apart from a few people working on their boats in the marina area.

Salmon heads 1

When I was young, growing up in Cleethorpes, you could always smell fish near the docks, and quite a long way down Freeman Street, which used to the main shopping area in Grimsby before most trade moved to the Riverhead Centre now known as Freshney Place. Now that much of the fishing industry has gone, the smell isn’t quite so pervasive, but the actual dock area still smells fishy.

Yard, Grimsby Docks

These days most of the fish that is sold at the Fish Market and processed in Grimsby is caught by boats based in Scotland and there are a lot fewer boats based in Grimsby. The food processing industry still provides a lot of employment in the area, and the combination of Immingham and Grimsby docks are the UK’s largest port by tonnage, with lots of car and food imports passing through.

Sunday morning, I got up early and went to a car boot sale with my Dad. Lots of junk with a few interesting items scattered about but nothing worth buying.

On Sunday afternoon, my brother, sister-in-law, Vic and I went for a walk along Cleethorpes beach where there are some wild orchids growing. The weather wasn’t as chilly as it usually is on the beach so it was quite pleasant and we took some time taking photos.

Beach Huts, Cleethorpes

Orchids and buttercups

Monday morning saw another trip to a couple of car boot sales. This time I found something interesting enough to buy. There was a stall selling old computers, including an old Amiga 500 and a Toshiba MSX machine, but I couldn’t really justify buying either of those, and they looked in pretty dirty condition. However on another stall I found a Psion Series 5mx in good condition along with a mains adaptor which I bought for a bargain £15.

I have the slightly older Psion Series 5 already, and to be honest I’m not sure that I’m really going to use either that much, but they’re nice machines, able to read and write to CompactFlash memory cards. The Psion Series 5 machines were pretty much the last great British-designed computer.

In the 80’s the UK lead the world in designing home computers with the Acorn and Sinclair machines, and Psion were one of the few companies that survive from that era. Sadly, they don’t made consumer devices any more, concentrating on handhelds for inventory tracking etc.

Southwold

A couple of weekends ago we went to Southwold in Suffolk, a small town where my Mum lived before the war. Vic and I both went there on holiday when we were kids so it was a return to old haunts in some ways.

We drove down to the Harbour Campsite on the Friday evening, arriving at about 9pm and putting the tent up as the night drew in. We then popped down the road to the Casa Mia bar for some food as we didn’t fancy heating anything up on the gas stove. After a good pizza and a beer (possibly the only drinking establishment in the area that doesn’t have Adnams!) we returned for the tent to sleep.

The next morning we were woken by the sound of rain falling on the tent. Not what we wanted to hear really, but we got up and cooked some bacon for breakfast.

Raindrops on the tent

Once we were fed we decided to walk into Southwold along the beach. That proved to be, well, not a mistake, more of a challenge. The wind was howling down the beach, blowing the rain horizontally into us. By the time we got to the beach huts marking the start of the the town, we were drenched, cold and red in the face from the wind. We retired to a coffee shop for a hot drink and to dry out a bit.

Southwold

Having had a breather we wandered around Southwold, visited a few shops and popped into the Kings Head for lunch by which time the weather had improved, at least to the stage where the rain had stopped even if it was still overcast and a bit windy. We walked back along the edge of the common to the campsite and stopped to take a few photos along the way.

Cowslips

After a bit of time back at the tent reading the paper, we walked down the harbour to the Harbour Inn for some dinner and a couple of pints of Adnams beer. Back at the tent it was going to be a cold night so we wrapped up warm and went to bed.

Southwold Beach

Sunday was much brighter, though there was still a biting wind. We packed the tent up and went for a walk on the beach before popping into town for some fish and chips.

We then headed back home, having enjoyed the weekend, though better weather would have made it more fun.