Towns of Two Halves extracts:
● “The Vitality Stadium was plain (but somehow less vulgar) Dean Court when I was there. Dean Court stood in a corner of Kings Park, which in turn was some miles to the east of Dean Park. Naturally, a town of Bournemouth’s pedigree would have had more than one esteemed dean in its history; but it would help if they could be referred to by name or, as further along the south coast in Rottingdean, description.”
● “Boscombe has a modest pier; you’ll do better, pier-wise, by continuing westwards. You have a choice of transport: Shank’s Pony or the Bournemouth Land Train. At the Bournemouth Pier end of the line there are conventional seaside attractions. On the pier itself, the usual combination of high-octane naffery.”
● “In the precincts of St Peter’s graveyard is the final resting place of Mary Shelley. If you’re in Bournemouth for a night match, see whether you have the nerve to visit the church after dark.”
● “The Russell-Cotes Art Gallery & Museum is worth a visit for the view alone. If you’re at all susceptible to Victorian ebullience you’ll enjoy the rest of it too. The house was a present by Merton Russell-Cotes (the hyphen is a game attempt to reconcile three surnames, don’t you think?) to his wife Annie.”
These are taken from the Bournemouth chapter of Towns of Two Halves, published in 2018. To buy a copy, email email@example.com.