I’ve always lived on the edge, so following on from my five best world beaches here are my five top British beaches.
The A+ of beaches
Aberdeen beach, Scotland: No, this is not the Caribbean, but I have swum here, in the frozen north-east of Scotland.
Miles and miles of sand stretching from the Brig o’ Balgownie to Footdee (Fittie) and its quaint fisherman’s cottages.
Aberdeen’s beachside and Queen’s Links have grown since I lived and worked here.
There’s now a cinema complex, but old fave Codona’s Amusement Park is still there. See www.visitabdn.com and Aberdeen – a light in the north.
Barry Island, Wales: And long before these guys washed up on our television screens I was down on Barry Island.
A favourite day out from Cardiff the beach is more compact than you might imagine but that gives it its intimacy.
Memories of a day out of my own after my old friend Whitey took me there when I’d failed an exam, and eating ice creams on the beach, come flooding back.
You can, of course, do a Gavin and Stacey tour www.visitwales.com.
Blundellsands beach, Liverpool; Parents everywhere will appreciate a good long stretch of sand to take their toddlers.
They’ve put up these statues from Antony Gormley called ‘Another Place’ since we were building sandcastles with the Son and Heir.
And that just enhances the view. Like the statues I was looking over to Ireland, hoping that one day I would live there. Visit https://www.visitliverpool.com/things-to-do/another-place-by-antony-gormley-p160981.
Portobello Beach, Edinburgh, Scotland: ‘Wall, huh! What is it good for? Absolutely nothing. Let’s say it again.’
With apologies to funkster Edwin Starr￼￼, this piece of graffiti embodies what Porty, where I spent ten years, is all about.
A city beach which also draws folks from across the Forth in Fife, and west from Glasgow, it boasts traditional swimming baths.
And Sean Connery was a lifeguard in the outdoor baths where the five-a-side pitches are now. Visit https://porty.org.uk/visit/ and https://edinburgh.org.
Brighton, England: A pebble beach but you’ll get over that quickly because of the buzz around the place.
Although I have been worried about the throngs there at the moment.
A traditional day out for Londoners, you’ll recognise it from the Mods film Quadrophenia.
But for me it’s a day down there when I was living in Reading and hooked up with friends, and some Spanish exchange students, which live long in the memory.
And Bitchin’ Beaches… five around the world.
MEET YOU ON THE BEACH