Seahouses, Northumberland


Originally uploaded by Mr_Chips

A Review
A mixture of old harbour with new tourists. On the one side, fishing boats, lobster traps and ropes. On the other hand fish and chips, bucket and spades and the worst of British tourism. Our cottage for the week is on the older side of the town so it is a short walk down to the harbour where the eider duck waddle ashore and stand around preening themselves.
In the old harbour huddle the fishing and tourist boats protected from the rough seas outside where the waves break over the rocks in dramatic fashion. Seagulls make themselves busy picking up the remains of the fish and chips that get left around. Herring gulls are the most boisterous, fighting each other for every morsel. The black headed gulls are smaller and behave like first formers around the school bullies. They delicately nip around picking up pieces that the big boys have missed. Meanwhile small crowds of starlings and house sparrows busy themselves around collecting nesting material.
Look out over the harbour wall towards the Farne islands. The light from the lighthouse breaks through the mist. In front of the harbour wall are the rocks known as the Tumblers. A low plateau of rocks which makes up the whinstone – igneous rock, resistant to erosion.

The harbour was built in 1889 to cater not just for the fishing trade. The lime kilns were also built here right by the harbour and are now used by the lifeboat people for storage. The lime industry was important because as farming intensified from the 18th century, lime was more in demand as it increased the fertility of the soil.

Although there are plenty of places to eat to cater for all tastes and pockets we liked the atmospheric pub; The Olde Ship Inn. One of the smallest bars in England full of fishing memorabilia. There was another bar where you could eat and a separate dining room. It was bar food but good. I had mussels as a starter and a game pie with tasty potatoes and vegetables. It was wholesome and fresh. Washed down with a pint of Lindisfarne ale. The room is a little on the small side so you can hear everyone’s conversation but hey…

There are some splendid shops and services. The community centre has internet access for a small charge and the Bakers is a delight. Trotters sells some delicious cheese scones and quiches that are just the thing for a rough boat ride across to the The Farnes.

Seahouses is where the boats to the Farne Islands go from so if you are planning a trip out there it is handy to stay in the port. We had to wait all week for a trip because the sea was too rough. It was worth it to see the puffins and other seabirds.


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