Favourite Things: Fiona Kemp
Fiona Kemp moved to Scarborough 13 years ago. Her '˜day job' is working at Boyes at their Havers Hill site, and outside of work she is a Leader with 2nd Scarborough (Westborough) Guides and enjoys spending time with the girls (aged 10-15).
I’d never been to Scarborough until the year before I moved up here, but fell in love with the town straight away.
There is such a wide variety of things going on all year round, and after over 30 years in London it is lovely to have a fresh sea breeze! I have always been fascinated by the sea, and can watch the waves for hours. Therefore, my favourite place has to be North Bay.
In the summer, I love a leisurely paddle round the bay, and in winter a bracing walk along the beach.
And if the walk ends at Peaches & Cream for one of their many flavours of ice cream or milkshake then that is even better!
The beach itself at low tide is a great place to take the Guides on a summer’s evening, for an evening of beach games, or a barbecue and a ‘chill out’ evening.
Nearby Peasholm Park is a lovely place for a stroll, and my favourite place in the park is the bandstand. Whether it is watching the Sunday afternoon band concerts, having a picnic whilst listening to the Scarborough Spa Orchestra during their concert in the summer, or playing the flute with Scarborough Concert Band during their summer concert each year, it is a lovely place to be.
I think one of the best views in Scarborough is from the Castle Headland – you can see both North and South Bays, and I find it a very calm, relaxing place.
Moving round to South Bay, you can’t beat the Spa Suncourt for a sheltered place to sit and watch the sea. Combine that with a Scarborough Spa Orchestra concert (the country’s last remaining professional seaside orchestra) and you have an amazing experience.
In bad weather, and for the evening concerts, the orchestra move inside to the Grand Hall, which is also home to a wide range of
other concerts and events during the year.
We are really lucky in Scarborough to have both the Scarborough Spa Orchestra and all the other concerts and events at the Spa.
When I moved up from London, I wondered if I would miss all the theatre there – the answer is not at all! We have a real gem in the Stephen Joseph Theatre – fantastic productions with ticket prices a fraction of those in London’s West End, and at the SJT I can see all the performers’ faces clearly,
unlike from the balcony in a big West End venue.
Another great place to go for an evening’s entertainment is the YMCA. The productions I have seen there are excellent – the young performers work so hard and produce a great evening’s
One of my favourite things to do is play instruments; playing the flute with the Scarborough Concert Band at the rehearsals and concerts, and going further afield to play recorders with the York Branch of the Society of
The recorder often has a bad image, but it is not just played by very young children squeaking on high pitched instruments. Our group in York regularly has around 20 players playing seven different sizes of recorder – the larger instruments have a really deep, sonorous sound. The thing I particularly like about the groups I play in is the wide variety of music we play – from Renaissance and Baroque, through the more popular classical music to swing and songs from the musicals. Sometimes it is definitely “from the sublime to the ridiculous”!
For a treat, I love going to Amelia’s Chocolates. I think one of the reasons I enjoy Guiding is that I haven’t
really grown up, so I love taking part in a Chocolate Workshop! Amelia’s tasting evenings are also a treat, but the problem is I can’t leave without buying a selection from the shop on the way out!
While I loved growing up and living in London, I am very glad I’ve moved to Scarborough with all its lovely places within walking distance of my home.
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