Tuesday, 22 November 2011

I have been to ... North West Norfolk

My wife and I have just returned from Old Hunstanton in North West Norfolk. We decided to go there at the last minute in order to finish the break that we began some weeks ago, and which had to be cut short when my father-in-law fell over and had to be rushed to hospital. His subsequent death has meant that since then we seem to have done nothing together except deal with the aftermath of his death, and we were in desperate need of a short break to recharge our batteries.

For the last three days we have been staying at the ‘Le Strange Arms Hotel’, Old Hunstanton.


We have stayed there many times before, and it is an excellent base from which to visit the northern and western parts of Norfolk. It is also very well known for its outstanding food and services, and as you can probably guess, we both rather overindulged ourselves.

During this particular stay we visited the centre of Hunstanton and nearby Heacham as well as King's Lynn. Despite the fact that the number of shops in the centre of Hunstanton is quite small, my wife found two pairs of shoes to buy. In Heacham she found a shop that specialises in selling items such as glassware, table decorations, cushions, vases, and candlesticks and she was able to purchase a set of table decorations that she needs for a retirement party that she is organising.

My 'retail therapy' had to wait until we visited King's Lynn, where the local toy shop proved to have a number of die-cast model aircraft on sale. These are made in China and sold in the UK by Red Box Toy Factory Limited under the trade name 'Motor Max Sky Wings'. I managed to buy two packs (for £2.99 each), each of which contained two versions of the same aircraft. The models represent single-engined Yokosuka D4Y Suisei dive-bombers and twin-engined Kawasaki Ki-45 Toryu fighters.

Both sets of aircraft are painted in Japanese markings, but are fairly generic in outline and should be usable as single and twin-engined bombers in wargames set in the late 1930s and early 1940s.

12 comments:

  1. About half an hours drive from where I live...

    Rob

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  2. Hi Bob,

    Welcome back! Relaxation and retail therapy - a winning combination in my book, especially with some good food and great surroundings thrown in!

    Interested in the aircraft - any chance of some pictures?

    All the best,

    DC

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  3. Xaltotun of Python (Rob),

    So are you a 'jolly fenman' then?

    All the best,

    Bob

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  4. David Crook,

    As the song says 'It is nice to go travelling, but oh so nice to come home.'

    I feel much better than I did three days ago, and I am feeling much more in the mood to get my toy/wargames room sorted out as well as to get a lot of the other small jobs that need to be done, done.

    I will be adding some photographs of the aircraft models to my blog just as soon as I have enough space on my wargames table to set them out.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  5. Hi Bob

    Geordie in exile. My next door neighbour works on the Wash - in season, collected samphire.

    Rob

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  6. Xaltotun of Python (Rob),

    A Geordie in exile eh? How different do you find the Fens from your home territory? My wife has an expression about the area around the Wash ... 'It has a lot of sky, doesn't it?'

    I trust that your neighbour lets you try some of the samphire he collects. I happen to think that it is a great accompaniment to fish.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  7. An there I was worried that you were lost in a wilderness somewhere. Shoe shops in Norfolk eh? Whatever next?

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  8. Tim Gow,

    Norfolk has its attractions ... besides shoe shops. Unfortunately the Tank Museum shut after half-term; otherwise I would have gone there as well.

    All the best,

    Bob

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  9. Lots of lovely samphire. Fried by itself in olive oil, added to mince/potato stews.....nice.

    Muckleborough is pretty good, though a few years since I've been to it. Something about places on your doorstep. Think I would describe it as more than just a tank museum though - they have quite a nice collection of models as well, for example.

    Re wilderness, quite easy to drive 30 miles in any direction without passing through a village - though you would get wet if you actually drove 30 miles East.

    Incidentally Bob, Hunstanton has one strange claim to fame - it's the only East coast resort that faces due West! Watching the sun set over the sea on the East coast is a bit strange!

    Rob

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  10. Xaltotun of Python (Rob),

    Sounds like the perfect way to cook samphire! I am drooling as a result of just reading your comment.

    I usually try to visit Muckleborough at least once every year of so, and my favourite exhibit is the collection of ship models (although the Gloster Meteor runs it a close second).

    Norfolk is a funny place is some ways. For one thing, it seems to shut up and go home to bed by nine o'clock at night. I once drove from Wymondham to Old Hunstanton, starting my journey just after 10.30pm ... and I drove the whole way (which is over 60 miles) and only saw ten other vehicles on the roads.

    'Sunny Hunny' does have the odd distinction you mention, and I think that it is one reason why it still remains a holiday resort at heart. Its odd position means that it seems to enjoy its own little micro-climate.

    All the best,

    Bob

    PS. Did you know that the town council actually considered changing the town's name to Stanton during the First World War? They thought that Hun-stanton sounded too unpatriotic!

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  11. Didn't know that, learn something new every day.

    Norfolk closing is the reason our son Steven hates the area - but then, he's used to being in bigger places like London, Birmingham and Port Stanley.

    Rob

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  12. Xaltotun of Python (Rob),

    I would have thought that Port Stanley was good preparation for visiting Norfolk; after all, the population of both have tendencies towards being what I understand the Army call 'Bennys' (after the character called Benny in 'Crossroads').

    All the best,

    Bob

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