Forget its tacky reputation, this Lincolnshire seaside conurbation is enjoying a renaissance based on its miles of golden sands

The beach at Cleethorpes is next to the railway station. Kids are riding donkeys, digging castles and playing football on smooth, endless sands. There’s a waft of vinegar and frying and the jingle of claw machines. Two minutes from the train and I’m sitting on what’s left of the Victorian pier outside the world’s biggest fish and chip shop, Papa’s. Lunch is haddock (from £8.99 with chips) in crispy batter, light as tempura, and a Hull pattie (£1.89) that tastes like battered sage and onion stuffing.

Cleethorpes pier has suffered fires, failed takeovers and partial demolition during the second world war; it has hosted nightclubs, bingo and wrestling. A local consortium restored its wooden walkways and stained glass six years ago and Papa’s fish and chip restaurant opened here in 2017, filling the old ballroom with round tables. Wartime forts appeared in the Humber Estuary, but essentially the east coast view has stayed much the same since the pier first opened nearly 150 years ago, financed by the railway company.

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Source: Gaurdian

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