More of that later, but firstly the main reason for our trip, which was to visit The Ginger Pop Shop and the display Eileen Soper’s Illustrated Worlds, a relatively new attraction that has opened up in what was the Swan Public House, right next to Poole Pottery on the Quay.
The Ginger Pop Shop has a lot of books and other items (including Golliwogs and Noddy’s Car) that are related to Enid Blyton, the well known author of over 700 children’s books and poems, including Noddy, The Famous Five and The Faraway Tree.
As well as the main shop, the Eileen Soper’s Illustrated Worlds exhibit has many illustrations by Eileen, whose pictures will bring back memories to those of us who grew up on the original versions of books like The Famous Five.
However a REAL TREAT is in store for those grown ups who are prepared to shed their role as parents or grandparents and to venture back to their childhood days.
If so, head off into the study and follow the clues and see if you can find out the identity of the thief.
I have to admit that Debbie and I thoroughly loved this, and I refuse to give away any clues, other than it’s really fun to do, and you WILL enjoy this.
As well as solving the mystery, there is a miror maze, which the kids will love, an old fashioned living room with toys and items from the 1940’s to the 1960’s, a section dedicated to World War Two and life at home during the war, an old fashioned school room, and much more.
We definitely recommend a trip to The Ginger Pop Shop as part of your visit to Poole and Poole Quay.
Moving on from here, we had lunch in one of the old pubs that are still on the Quay and which have retained their look and character on the outside. Although the food options are more up to date, the character of the inside of the pubs has been retained, and they also have entertainment in the evenings and weekends.
Outside the Lord Nelson on Saturday there was a trio playing Irish Music, with Fiddle, Guitar and of course the Bodrum without which a jig just wouldn’t be the same.
Walking west along the Quay there are various gift shops, eateries, the old Poole Museum (well recommended also), and at the end the old Lifting Bridge and the Lifeboat Station.
Across from the Quay visitors can drool at the latest creations from the Sunseeker line, luxury cruisers that are well known around the world.
Next door to The Ginger Pop Shop is Poole Pottery, a product that put Poole on the map, but which now is little more than a huge gift shop. There are some splendid designs still for sale, including collectables from original designers like Leslie Elsden, who was actually my next door neighbour when I was growing up. Also a set of plates that illustrate famous ships, including the Archibald Russell which was the second ship that my Grandfather sailed on, and on her maiden voyage too.
There is also a statue on the water front of Lord Baden Powell, who founded the Boy Scouts and held the first Boy Scout Camp on Brownsea Island, which can be seen just across the harbour, as can the millionaires paradise of Sandbanks.
The sad thing for me is that growing up Poole Quay was the setting for cargo ships to tie up and offload their cargo, for olde worlde pubs and warehouses, whereas now there are luxury homes, hotels, shops and restaurants, which I suppose are good for business and help to attract more tourists, but it’s not the same as I remember.
So we had a great day out on Saturday, to a great place to spend a day. If you do have the opportunity to go to the South of England and Dorset, I definitely recommend visiting Poole Quay. You won’t be disappointed.