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Lets move to Scarborough, North Yorkshire: 'Where seasiding began' - theguardian.com

It has it all – donkey rides, ice-cream sundaes, fish and chips, penny slots and a miniature railway

What’s going for it? I’ll warn you: I’m saving Scarborough for me. It’s mine, all mine. You can keep your Costa Brava and all of that palaver. This, where seasiding began in the 17th century, has all I require in life balanced beautifully in the perfect resort recipe: one measure donkey rides to two parts ice-cream sundaes, a dash of kiss-me-quick, a sprinkling of eccentricity (those daily mini naval battles on the lake in Peasholm Park, for starters), a generous helping of fish and chips (cooked in dripping, natch), penny slots, funiculars (I love a funicular) and a miniature railway, a dash (but only a dash) of decline. I could, believe me, go on. What could possibly improve it? Well the locals are giving it a try. The spa’s revived, the new Alpamare waterpark is one of the fanciest in the UK (with an infinity pool – in Scarborough!), and the newly reinvented 1930s open-air theatre welcomes the Beach Boys this summer. Back to their roots, you might say. Hope they wrap up warm. Next on the wish list? Wes Anderson buys the Grand Hotel. I can dream.

The case against Out of the way. Even York’s a bit of a schlep. The mooted demolition of the fabulous Futurist Theatre on the front: depressing.

Well connected? Trains: Hull (1 hr 25 mins), Leeds (74 mins), York (48 mins). Driving: York in 70 mins, the A1M 10 minutes further, Middlesbrough or Hull in 80 mins, though the A64 gets clogged.

Schools Primaries: Newby and Scalby, Barrowcliff, St Peter’s RC, Northstead Community, Gladstone Road, Friarage Community, St Martin’s CofE and Wheatcroft are “good”, says Ofsted. Secondaries: Scalby and St Augustine’s RC are “good”.

Hang out at… You’ll find me at the perfectly preserved Harbour Bar, with a knickerbocker glory in my hand. Scarborough is also home to one of the best Italian restaurants in the country: Lanterna.

Where to buy The old town, by the castle, has 18th to 19th century town houses and cottages. The rest has a fabulous range of town houses, semis and detacheds, from high Victorian to the 1940s. South Bay is poshest, around South Cliff Gardens, with Weaponness Park the pièce de résistance. North Bay is cheaper, but there are fine villas and town houses near Peasholm Park. Further out, try Scalby and West Ayton. Detacheds and town houses, £160,000-£900,000. Semis, £90,000-£350,000. Terraces and cottages, £80,000-£250,000. Flats, £40,000-£350,000. Rentals: one-bed flat, £250-£500pcm; three-bed house, £550-£750pcm.

Bargain of the week A town house in the old town, £130,000 with cphproperty.co.uk.

From the streets

Pamela Glanville “Scarborough’s great for urban walking. Zigzag paths join the beach with the clifftops, in both North and South Bays. In the tourist season, you can finish your walk with a funicular ride back to your car on the Esplanade.”

Matthew Martin “Eat Me Cafe behind the Stephen Joseph theatre (another gem): try the chips.”