The Scottish Mail on Sunday

Bri­tain’s shore win­ners

- Un­cover more of Eng­land’s sea­side se­crets at vis­iteng­land.com.

ENG­LAND is dot­ted with un­ex­pected and daz­zling sea­side gems. Here KATIE ROWE tours some of the finest…

CLIFFTOP CUL­TURE IN CORN­WALL

HID­ING among Corn­wall’s sandy beaches and celebrity chef-run seafood restau­rants is the Mi­nack Theatre. Its clifftop set­ting above the rolling At­lantic means the view is just as dra­matic as the open-air per­for­mances. Reg­u­lar fam­ily sto­ry­telling events, Verdi’s La Travi­ata, Se­bas­tian Faulks’s Bird­song, Shakespear­e’s Twelfth Night and Robert Louis Steven­son’s Trea­sure Is­land are just part of the line-up for the 2017 sea­son. If you can’t at­tend one of the shows, stop by the cafe for a Cor­nish cream tea and those spec­tac­u­lar vis­tas.

BEACH FOOD IN KENT

THe Dun­geness Snack Shack in Rom­ney Marsh is proof that you don’t need a deep wal­let or fancy restau­rant to en­joy qual­ity seafood. The menu changes de­pend­ing on the catch, hauled in daily by the Hut’s two boats, but you can usu­ally ex­pect some form of fish­er­man’s roll and lob­ster and crab rolls. Some­thing that doesn’t change is the view out to sea and the cafe’s strong em­pha­sis on sus­tain­abil­ity and un­pre­ten­tious­ness.

LIVER­POOL’S SCULP­TURES

VeN­TuRe six miles north of the buzzing mu­se­ums and gal­leries of the city’s thriv­ing his­toric wa­ter­front and you’ll find a wide, sandy beach filled with fig­ures gaz­ing out to sea. This is Crosby beach, the per­ma­nent home of Antony Gorm­ley’s art in­stal­la­tion Another Place. Here, 100 life­size cast-iron stat­ues are scat­tered across a two-mile stretch of sand. The tide ob­scures and re­veals the fig­ures as it ebbs and flows, and the ef­fect is both beau­ti­ful and a lit­tle bit eerie.

HOLY IS­LAND IN NORTHUM­BER­LAND

THIS county’s coast is guarded by a se­ries of dra­matic cas­tles, in­clud­ing im­pres­sive, dune-fronted Bam­burgh and ru­ined Dun­stan­burgh, but Lind­is­farne on Holy Is­land is surely the most mys­te­ri­ous. Built in 1550, it stands on a rocky out­crop on the is­land, which was once home to St Cuth­bert and the Lind­is­farne Gospels. In fact, this tiny tidal is­land was one of An­glo-Saxon eng­land’s most im­por­tant cen­tres of early Chris­tian­ity.

As you cross a cause­way over the North Sea to reach it, you’re fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of pil­grims who have made this same jour­ney since the 6th Cen­tury.

VIN­TAGE RAIL­WAY IN DEVON

THe Dart­mouth Steam Rail­way fol­lows the spec­tac­u­lar english Riviera ‘Geop­ark’ coast­line be­tween Paign­ton and Kingswear. Stay in one of Blue Chip Hol­i­days’ cot­tages or lodges in Paign­ton and spend some time on the town’s soft, sandy beaches be­fore board­ing this her­itage steam train.

Fans of Agatha Christie should hop off at Green­way Halt to see the queen of crime’s Devon hide­away, and mar­vel at the ocean panorama as you chug along­side the beach at Goodring­ton Sands.

Dis­em­bark at Kingswear for me­an­der­ing streets and friendly pubs, or take the foot pas­sen­ger ferry across the River Dart to Dart­mouth.

 ??  ?? UNIQUE: One of Antony Gorm­ley’s 100 stat­ues at Crosby beach. Left: The Mi­nack Theatre in Corn­wall
UNIQUE: One of Antony Gorm­ley’s 100 stat­ues at Crosby beach. Left: The Mi­nack Theatre in Corn­wall

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