Friday, 19 February 2016

Bring Me Sunshine

Morecambe and the Midland Hotel

The late great Eric Morecambe took his stage name from the town of Morecambe and I’m sure there are thousands of people who have posed by Graham Ibbetson’s statue of Eric since the Queen unveiled it in 1999. Last week Sally and I went away for the first time on our own since October 2014 when family illness and then bereavement and subsequent early retirements changed the trajectories of our lives. What better place than Bradford-on-Sea (as Morecambe used to be called because of the holidaymakers who flocked there from the textile mills in Bradford)? Morecambe now seems to be a faded seaside town but with an atmospheric stone jetty and a fantastic promenade which you can walk along to Heysham and visit the weird stone coffins on the cliff top by St Patrick’s Chapel. We got an internet deal and stayed for two nights in the elegant Midland Hotel, a restored Art Deco place which is full of quirks but plenty of treats.
Midland Hotel in Morecambe

Bring me sunshine in your smile
Bring me laughter all the while
In this world where we live
There should be more happiness
So much joy you can give
To each brand new bright tomorrow
Blustery Weather and February Sunsets

Make me happy through the years
Never bring me any tears
Let your arms be as warm
As the sun from up above
Bring me fun, bring me sunshine, bring me love
Pour down thy weather
Taking a February break by the English seaside is of course guaranteed to blow away cobwebs, both literal and metaphorical. But as a nation I think the English are pretty skilled at “wrapping up warm” and, as Shakespeare’s King John points out,
So foul a sky clears not without a storm:
Pour down thy weather!
After the storm comes clearer sky. Weathering a storm is part of life’s fabric. Day follows night. Spring follows Winter. And on the way back from Morecambe we took a detour to gawp at the astonishing Ribblehead Viaduct….
Ribblehead Viaduct