I had a night away in Hartlepool to see my other favourite band in the entire universe, Warm Digits. They were playing at an event called Lost In The Woods and they were the headline act. You can read all about it on the Minds blog at Priptona Weird. The following day I had a few hours available to explore Hartlepool before getting a train back to Newcastle for my onward journey back to Glasgow.
I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with my time. I was worried that I’d be suffering too much from all the standing about and dancing about at the gig the night before. It was dependent upon a) How well I pulled up from said gig, and b) Location and price of any attractions I might have been interested in exploring. The weather was also another aspect to consider. On the days leading up, it wasn’t promising of being that good and it seemed as if quite a bit of rain would be about.
I didn’t feel that great on my feet the morning after the gig, but a shower helped to limber me up a bit and the forecast for the weather had taken a turn for the better and it looked as if it would be remaining dry for the remainder of my stay in Hartlepool. I thought I might as well make the most of it and headed to the marina.
On the way down, I was approaching The National Royal Navy Museum and decided to go in and have a look, see how much it would cost to go in and explore. An adult ticket is £10 and it lasts for 12 months. That is exceptional value for money. With enough spare money on me to do it, I decided to head on into the museum and explore.
There is quite a bit to see in there. There’s a huge naval vessel called the Trincomalee, and there are displays around the marina – old style shop fronts with full sized figures inside portraying workers, business owners and householders. There were various kids play areas, both indoors and outdoors and there was also a tearoom/cafe there as well. I wiled away some time exploring the shops and having a coffee and a piece of cake in the tearoom. Considering it was the day of the coronation, I decided on a slice of Victoria sponge. You could serve your own slice and the plates provided had little Union Flag napkins on them. The slice had a little toothpick in it with a little Union Flag on it. I brought it home as a souvenir. Lol
I also spent time exploring the Trincomalee. The ship is HUGE. There must be about 24 canons on the ship. I explored the upper deck and three lower decks. All I kept thinking was geez – you neither wanted to be tall or suffer from claustrophobia being a naval officer! Not to mention REALLY needing good sea legs. Talk about cramped. One can only imagine it teeming with hundreds of officers throughout the ship, sloshing about in the ocean out in the middle of nowhere. That kind of life was for the hardy!
Hartlepool museum is extended through the side area of where the entrance is and there were some good displays there as well. I particularly enjoyed learning about the “monkey-hangers” – something that Andy from Warm Digits had mentioned while we were walking about the town centre the afternoon previous. During the Napoleonic Wars, a French ship was sunk off the coast of Hartlepool. One survivor was found washed ashore – a “little hairy man” (aka a monkey) that the locals were convinced was a French spy, so the locals had the poor wee monkey hanged. There was a song about it that you could listen to by pressing a button on the wall. I recorded most of it. You can hear it below.
I really enjoyed my exploration around the National Royal Navy Museum at Hartlepool. If you ever find yourself in Hartlepool, I do recommend that you take the time to visit the museum, especially if you have kids.
Plenty of photos to view and look at below. Click on the images for better viewing options.
Before heading back to Hartlepool train station, I stopped and had McDonalds for lunch. That’s another handy point for visiting the museum – the McDonalds is just across the road from the museum’s entrance. And yes, I have not partaken in a McDonalds for many a year but upon a recent trip to Milngavie, I tried their McPlant burger and I have to say it is REALLY good! I had the McPlant Double on Saturday and that’s a 10/10 for me! I know! Who’d have thought I’d be recommending McDonalds! But honestly, the McPlant is a great burger!
I’d be happy to return to Hartlepool in the near future. I had a really lovely time there. Thanks for the fun, Hartlepool! Hope to see you again one day.