By Francesca Baker
What does our relationship with the seaside have to say about our aspirations, national pride, and social quirks?
That’s the subject of Travis Elborough’s book Wish You Were Here: England on Sea, in which he explores ‘what its story says about us and what stories in turn we’ve told ourselves.’
From the Regency habit of taking to the coast for the waters, through to the 1951 Festival of Britain, and today’s gentrification of decaying seaside towns, he explores with a uniquely English combination of irony and pride the English Riviera.
And where better to talk about this than in Margate, a seaside town that is transforming? Travis will be at Margate Bookie at 10.15am on Saturday (November 23) at Turner Contemporary. He will be discussing how our aspirations and snobbery, our attitudes to sex, our keen sense of fair play, our chequered relationship with national pride and our ability to laugh at ourselves have all been played out against a backdrop of stormy skies, pebbly beaches and sticks of rock.
Tickets are £5 and available here