23 and a half hours in Harrogate

Ahhh … Harrogate … the place of my birth and the infamous Betty’s Tea Rooms where punters queue around the corner just to get a table.   A place where I feel warm, secure and protected by my forebears, even if don’t go back as often as I should.  Harrogate is where my roots are.


Sadly there was no time to linger.  So much to do, so little time. I boarded a train at Taunton at 12.50hrs and arrived in Harrogate at 18.00hrs and I left, by car at 17.30hrs the following day.  Not by choice, but by necessity.

I stayed at the Old Swan Hotel and was so focused on other things that I hadn’t realised that this was where Agatha Christie stayed  when she ‘went missing’ and kept stumm for  10 days following her car being found empty and dangling over a chalk cliff.  Hopefully, staying within the very same hallowed walls, some of her genius will rub off on my writing.  I always live in hope.

My path also unknowingly crossed with my musical muse, Dillie Keane.  After the event,  I stumbled across a post by Fascinating Aida’s Founder about the crocuses on Harrogate’s The Stray.

I was beside myself when I found out that Dillie performed  her one woman show at the Harrogate Theatre on the evening I left.  I had walked right past the bloody theatre as well.

But … sometimes you have to get your priorities right.  I was there to attend to family business only and had no time to be side-tracked.  So I checked out of The Old Swan, drove past the house I was born in and the pub my grandparents ran as well as missing my musical muse and left Harrogate with a mixed bag of emotions.

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