Jo’s Monday walk : Seaham ‘Tommy’

Sculpture Eleven O One, known by the locals as Tommy

Sculpture Eleven O One, known by the locals as ‘Tommy’

It’s a far cry from the cliff tops of the Algarve to the Green above the cliffs in former mining town, Seaham, but that’s where our walk will take us this week.  The campaign to keep Tommy in place has attracted national attention, and I needed to see him for myself.

Built out of special corten steel by local sculptor, Ray Lonsdale, Eleven O One is so named for the armistice which came into effect at 11am on November 11, 1918.  His air of total bone weariness and despair makes you want to throw an arm around him. Originally intended to be in place for just 3 months, Tommy has touched so many hearts that donations have almost raised the £85,000 needed to keep him.

I’ve taken you to Seaham before, though not on my Monday walks.  It has a long seafront and a pretty little marina.  Come with me and I’ll show you a bit more.

I'm starting at the car park at the far end of the front

I’m starting at the car park at the far end of the front

And walking back along it

And walking back along it towards the lighthouse

Pausing to admire the many rock pools

Pausing to admire the many rock pools

There's a lot of cloud today

There’s a lot of cloud today

So the sea isn't at it's twinkly best

So the sea isn’t quite at it’s twinkly best

But it's still a place where the starfish like to play

But it’s still a place where the starfish like to play!

For the moment we will bypass the Green, where a crowd gathers to have a photo taken with Tommy.  I will come back when it’s quieter, to lay a hand on his knee and try to console him. Instead, we will drop down into the marina, not looking quite so pretty today with heavy skies.

Boats can always snare my attention

Boats can always snare my attention

With a waft of flowers to cheer them up

With a waft of flowers to cheer them up

And some noble weeds

And a few noble weeds

There are good views out to the lighthouse from the cafe that sits above the marina, and the RNLI have an excellent museum, showcasing the lifeboat, if you have time to browse.

Leaving the marina, I look out to the lighthouse

Leaving the marina, I look out to the lighthouse

And the view around the bay

And back across the bay, at Seaham , above the cliffs

There are miles of cliff tops so you can extend the walk as far as you want.  There are parking facilities at both ends of the seafront and also by the Green.  A lower promenade takes you closer to the beach, or you can check out the craft shops and sample local cuisine if that appeals more. But now it’s time to return to Tommy.

Could anything be more sad?

walking logo

Time I shared with you some brilliant walks from last week.  You can click on the logo above or my Jo’s Monday walks page for details of how to join in.  You’re always very welcome.

First up we have Elaine, fresh from the Three Peaks Challenge on Saturday.  I think she’s earned a rest this week!  :

http://elainemcnulty.wordpress.com/2014/07/07/walking-the-ridgeway-from-tring-station-to-wendover/

Drake has been a loyal supporter since I started my walks.  Come with us to lovely Strasbourg  :

http://ledrakenoir.wordpress.com/2014/07/07/age-do-charm/

Jude always has an eye for a beautiful garden and this week is no exception  :

http://smallbluegreenflowers.wordpress.com/2014/07/07/garden-portrait-glenwhan-gardens/

The Alcazar in Seville is a special place, especially when seen through Amy’s lens  :

https://shareandconnect.wordpress.com/2014/07/08/jos-monday-walk-the-alcazar-gardens/

You need a strong stomach for Sue’s post this week.  Deep fried Oreos?  After you!  :

http://traveltalesoflife.com/2014/07/11/chocolate-dipped-bacon-and-scorpion-pizza-eating-at-the-calgary-stampede-a-wild-ride/

Happy walking folks!  I hope to see you next week.

106 comments

  1. So, was the area successful in raising the money to keep Seaham “Tommy?” He does look quite sad and I like your words: “His air of total bone weariness and despair makes you want to throw an arm around him.” I’m sure the survivors of World War I were bone weary after that horrific time. I hope they succeed in keeping poor Tommy.

  2. enjoyed your Seaham walk – and hope they raise the money to keep Tommy – and hope the mining town is able to rebuild (I read your other comment… )

    anyhow, hope you have a nice rest of July Jo – peace ❤ – 🙂

    1. I’m sure he will, L 🙂 So many evil things go on around us and I’m usually quite light-hearted on here, but this guy speaks volumes, doesn’t he? Thanks for your time, again.

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