I'm indebted to reader and former town crier Paul Conyers Silverthorn for pointing me in the direction of Saturday's Times, where there's a review of Boredstares which describes it as oozing 'scruffy charm'. Paul writes:
In The Times on Saturday 11 July a full page article entitled 'The great British weekend' featured Broadstairs and urged people to go. 'Britain is blessed with its beaches and a weekend in Broadstairs gives you the best that we have to offer.' Splendid stuff. An article very strongly in the town's favour. Elsewhere in the article, however, one or two interesting comments emerged: 'scruffy charm', 'down-at-heel but genteel', and 'kiss-me-quick air'.
I have been urging TDC to freshen up Broadstairs for years. Perhaps now something might be done. I am very proud of Broadstairs and all positive press mentions feed that pride. However, I don't see how TDC and Broadstairs and St Peter's Town Council can ignore these stated shortcomings any longer. I thank the Times for such a supportive article. I thank them also for expressing what is blatantly obvious with a public voice.
We who love Broadstairs call for action on railings, on pavement, on the neglected spots on the undercliff, on litter. Let's make Broadstairs a much sought after holiday destination without the shabbiness. Pile on the pressure.
Well, whilst I applaud your pride in your town Paul, I must say there are shabbier and scruffier places on the island than Broadstairs. Try living with an arsonised eyesore on your front for a decade, or a derelict pavilion or concert hall. Personally I'd say the Dickensians have had it pretty good, probably because so many Tory councillors abide there and have left it unsullied. I seem to recall it was only a few years ago that the whole of the top prom was spruced up. And the Millennium lift was only installed, er, I'm guessing, nine years ago.
The Times mentions the lift: 'Almost my favourite thing is the ancient lift that whirrs you effortlessly up inside the cliff when the call to put your feet up becomes too much to resist.' Hang on! 'Inside the cliff?' Ah, well that explains it. She's only gone and muddled it up with Hastings!
Right, talking of shabby chic, I'm off to watch the Hotel Inspector do the Walpole Bay on Five!
Read the whole shabby article in the Times
Click here to watch Walpole Bay Hotel inspected on Demand Five