Reading through the book ‘The Midland Hotel, Morecambe’s White Hope’, I was intrigued by a selection of signatures from the 1950s Visitors Book. Some of the personalities I had heard or seen on radio and television, some of the names were vaguely familiar and there were some I knew nothing about. Intrigued, I took a closer look at some of The Midland’s famous footfall and was amazed to find international leading lights of their time in music, film, comedy, dance and politics.
Brian Jenkins, Concierge at The Midland in Morecambe, is always in demand for his interesting and insightful tours of the hotel.
Guests from all over the world with an interest in architecture and history visit The Midland and Brian is happy to be in a position to enhance the guest’s experience by furnishing them with details of the original design and architect, Oliver Hill, the restoration, artwork by Eric Gill, Marion Dorn and Eric Ravilious as well as anecdotes of life in the hotel past and present.
English Lakes is proud of its pets welcome policy and guests have been bringing their pets to our hotels in the Lake District and Lancashire for many years. We welcome back our special four legged blogger, Max, who has been to the seaside and just couldn’t wait to tell us about his visit to The Midland, Morecambe.
Following on from our short blog about Anthony Padgett, a featured supplier at The Midland Wedding Open Day we spoke to Carol from Itsy Bitsy Vintage who will also be at the hotel on Sunday to discuss planning your perfect vintage wedding.
Itsy Bitsy Vintage is an experienced service for vintage loveliness in Lancashire, Cumbria and the Yorkshire Dales. For vintage weddings, celebratory tea parties and unique events, Itsy Bitsy offers vintage china hire for up to 120 people, bunting, prop hire and vintage styling.
With authentic vintage china, a wide collection of vintage and antique props from the Edwardian period through to the early 1960’s, they work with clients to add a period feel to their celebrations and compliment the architecture of their chosen venue. Whether you choose a fun eclectic seaside celebration, a summer English tea party or a glamorous Great Gatsby wedding, Itsy can help create your look. Continue reading
The vintage buzz can be felt in Morecambe and I’m more than a bit excited to be in the middle of it. After harping on about all things vintage and being told my living room looks like it belongs to an old lady, it’s with a hint of ‘I told you so’ that I welcome you all and wonder what took you so long?!
Vintage by the Sea is set to take place at the fabulous Midland Hotel on Saturday 14th September and we’re in full swing ready for the masses to descend on Morecambe. Being Morecambe born and bred though I feel I should let you in on a few secrets and silence the cynics that think there is nothing to do here. Morecambe is a gem of second hand and antique shops, some that have been in the town for years. Being a kind soul, I’ll let you in on a few of the places you must go when you visit the seaside.
Old Pier Bookshop
Firstly I have to mention The Old Pier Bookshop on Morecambe promenade. Many a rainy day off (and one first date) have been spent in this shop.
This shop is a maze of great books that you can spend hours looking through. You do need to have a good look but luckily the owner knows where everything is so just ask if you don’t fancy a rummage!
Enjoy an afternoon in here and see if you can spot the stuffed seagull!
Secondly (and I’m not biased at all) is my Mum’s vintage shop, Dotty’s Vintage.
Dotty’s came about from a collection gone mad and after much persuasion from me and my sister to open a shop so people could come and enjoy the many beautiful things my mum had picked up over the years.
You can feel the passion for vintage when you come in the shop, not just because some of the pieces are so loved, some are only shown to visitors over a cup of tea and never sold! This sparked the idea for ‘Tea by the Sea’ which is a vintage styled tea room which was opened alongside the shop. Now even more people visit having tea and are shown some of the many treasures in Dotty’s.
Pop in for original garments from the 20s onwards or even if you just love vintage and want a cup of tea and a chat!
Dotty’s Vintage are curating the Vintage Marketplace for Vintage by the Sea so expect quality vintage items and the loveliest of traders!
The Vintage West End
Now this isn’t necessarily one shop but rather an area of Morecambe that people might neglect.
Morecambe’s West End has many second hand shops, some of which sell retro and vintage garments but I find it is a great place to pick up second hand furniture.
For anyone in to up cycling, you can pick up furniture from around five pounds so there’s no excuse not to experiment! My tip would be to make sure you have a good wander round the side streets to find a little shop selling china and another selling military collectibles.
Northern Relics is a couple of minutes walk from The Midland and packed full of antiques.
If you’re looking to splash out on something then this holds the largest selection of antiques in Morecambe. You’ll spot this usually by the large giraffes outside!
I think that should be more than enough to keep any vintage lover busy during a day in Morecambe. That is if you manage to leave the hotel with all of the things going on at Vintage by the Sea!
This year sees The Midland celebrate its 80th anniversary having first opened its doors on 12th July 1933. Designed by Oliver Hill with interior decoration by Eric Gill the hotel has a rich heritage. The Midland has allegedly been a favourite haunt of celebrities such as Coco Chanel, Sir Lawrence Olivier and Noel Coward which only adds to its illustrious history and air of seaside glamour.
The Midland is often cited as being one of the most iconic buildings in Britain. And this year, to celebrate its 80th anniversary year the hotel will host a spectacular Vintage celebration.
During a golden period before the Second World War, The Midland, recognised widely as an art deco masterpiece, played host to luminaries and fashion icons such as Coco Chanel, Wallace Simpson, Laurence Olivier and Noel Coward, who enjoyed the panoramic views across Morecambe Bay to the Lake District fells in the distance.