The fondest memories of my childhood all took place at the beach, whether it was at Broadstairs or Hastings, Whitstable or Margate every weekend bucket and spade in hand the beach was where we’
The fondest memories of my childhood all took place at the beach, whether it was at Broadstairs or Hastings, Whitstable or Margate every weekend bucket and spade in hand the beach was where we’d be heading.
Down the M2 stretch at god knows o’clock in the morning was the way we did it. There was never time for breakfast, just a mouthful of granny’s mint imperials to line our stomachs until we reached the closest greasy spoons . Squeezy tomato ketchup bottles, sticky tables dressed in red and white plaid squares and an orderly cue of beachcombers in flip-flops all battling to get seated at…the Little Chef.
It was hardly the finest of all dining experiences but the Little Chef was always the first pit stop on our journey to the beach.
Arriving as the sun came up was often the case, just to ensure we had the best spot on an almost empty stretch of sand, albeit a seagull or two. As the morning went on and the parasols dotted along the beach, the smell of candy floss, doughnuts and slush puppies, all delicious seaside snacks that we couldn’t keep our mitts off.
The seaside – you know you love it
First however, we’d have to make our way through a cool box loaded to the brim with bottles of Irn-Bru, Capri Suns, Marmite sandwiches and a assortment of leftover crisps, often stale. After making short-work of all that it was a march up the sand dunes to the closest beach cafe for a big bag of chips saturated in vinegar and smothered in ketchup as seagulls swooped in for any leftovers that might of strayed from our mouths.
Whilst the sun commenced in burning our skin, the not too distant call of the ice-cream truck could be heard over the screams of children running around, dipping their feet in crab infested rock pools. An ice-cream sundae sprinkled with nuts and drizzled with chocolate sauce was a necessity that’s if you could manage one after everything else. If it wasn’t an ice-cream truck it was a ice-cream parlour, gelato galore.
Cruising down a pier to find amusement arcades to waste away hours on 2p machines waiting for a big payout before you used your last 2 pence piece and scurried around the floor, looking for any that might’ve strayed. The pier was often home to old fashioned sweet store to where we could stock up on my most favourite candies for the journey home, everything from; cough candy, blackjacks, sherbet lemons, and rhubarb and custards all stuffed into a 100g bag.
If Britain seaside’s was to lose any small trace of all its glory, it would be tragic, from their beachside cafés to their leggy piers it wouldn’t be the same without them. Over indulging in our favourite seaside snacks will be forever one of Britain’s favourite past times, every trip for me to the coast inspires a Mr whippy or some cockles by the sea.
Share your favourite seaside snacks from your childhood, perhaps you still indulge in them now. Comment below if we missed any.
Image: Peter Trimming / Wikimedia Commons