Monday, April 04, 2011
We skipped the light fandango
| posted by Simon |
11:12 pm |
If you travel along the M6 to junction 40, or get on the West Coast main line, you’ll eventually find Penrith, a one horse town on the eastern edge of the Lake District. The very strange one-way system makes it seem three times bigger than it really is. If you manage to find a parking space, make sure you only put an hour on your ticket. In fact you’ll spend more time looking for the Penrith tea rooms than actual shopping… and you know what? You won’t find them, they don’t exist. In one of the biggest ever niche market failures, Penrith has failed to exploit Withnail fans. I was very much looking forward to threatening Miss Blennerhassett with the sack, and watching the eye rolling as they heard, for the umpteenth time.. “we want the finest wines available to humanity, we want them here, and we want them now”.
There a couple of nice food shops, one of them is a very big deli in the main square, then there are a couple of little general stores that sell all the Lake District special foods, handmade chocolates, jam, pickles and a very nice damson Gin. There isn’t even a tobacconist and the paper shop didn’t sell cigar matches.
There is however one very good reason to get in your car or on the train and travel a ridiculous distance to get to Penrith. The Angel lane chippy. For an inland town the fish is top class and the pies are delicious. It’s worth the trip believe me. In the past we have been known to drive from Cumbria to Whitby just for fish and chips at the Magpie café, or to Conwy to the chippy just opposite the bakers that sells Vanilla slices the size of breezeblocks. We are connoisseurs of the fish and chip, so when I say go to Penrith just for the Angel chippy, I promise you it’s worth it.
We are not drunks, we are multimillionaires.