Out There column

Vintage Festival.
Vintage Festival.

I’ve always been partial to a little bit of vintage so I simply couldn’t stay away from the Vintage by the Sea Festival in Morecambe at the weekend.

Growing up in Edinburgh, vintage fashion was what all the trendiest students wore.

I spent hours scouring second had shops looking for quirky clothes in a vain attempt to emulate those super-cool students.

It helped greatly that friends of our family – the O’Briens – had a second hand clothing empire in the city.

They came over from Ireland and started off in the rag trade.

At first they had a couple of clothing shops called Armstrongs and ‘Big Brendan’, the patriarch of the family, also sold antiques.

In more recent years they have opened a factory where they sort and process second had clothing from across the UK and one of Brendan’s sons, Gavin, has even opened a shop in New York.

What I’m getting at is the fact that all things ‘vintage’ can be big business these days.

That certainly seemed to be borne out by the massive crowds at the Vintage by the Sea on Sunday.

When the vintage market in The Platform was closing down at about 3.45pm, there was a scrum as people fought for a last look at the stalls.

On Sunday the prom was heaving with people all the way from The Battery and up towards Hest Bank.

It was wonderful to see so many parts of the prom throbbing with life.

Morecambe was alive again and the town’s potential was being exploited to great effect.

All hail Wayne Hemingway.

My husband Mark was snapping away with his camera and I was reminded of the days when Morecambe was known as the ‘Festivals Captial of the North West’.

I particularly enjoyed the wide selection of music played by DJs with some of the best record collections in the land. Groovy.

As we walked back to the Sunny Slopes, we could still hear the thumping bass of a reggae classic.

There is clearly a demand for this type of event.

Create it and they will come.