Some of you may know that after 7 years of being a dedicated Londoner (I even walk like a one, you know that pace? And the look that says ‘no, YOU will move out of the way first, lesser being!’), I am now a born-again Portsmouth dweller. I say born-again in a humorous reference to years of vowing never to live there again. Many summer holidays and one solitary post-university year were quite enough, thank you. However I saw the light (*that light being a the glaring beacon that is a flat on the seafront right by the train to London) AND I refuse to pay 40% more rent this year in Hackney. Who ever said the Olympics would be a good thing for East Londoners needs to be shot. Was it you Boris? I know at least two people who have lost their homes due to rent increases. I also wanted to spend more time with my beloved Grandmothers. God, I love those women too much.

Oh, how things can change.

It turns out that my home town (Pompey born to Pompey parents, bred in Paris darlings) has also provided me with a lot of inspiration. It’s not rocket science: its a fascinating place from a historical point of view and I like old things. This is one side of Old Portsmouth. I took these pictures on my iphone, I hasten to add, to share with you why it inspires me. If I feel at a loose end I simply trot out to the sea front. Its equally therapeutic during a storm or rainy day. On days of particularly dramatic emotion, I have been known to entertain a bored mind (mine) by standing on a windy rampart in a blue velvet Victorian frock coat, looking wistfully out to sea a la *ahem* Fanny Price….(part of Mansfield Park was filmed in Old Portsmouth). I still spend half my time in London – don’t withhold those events invites, have travel card, will travel – but the rest of the time: bliss.

All of these pictures were taken in a 200 yard radius of my flat. Take note friends who have promised to visit! I adjusted the contrast slightly on a few, but as anyone who knows me can attest, I have no photography/photoshop skills what so ever. Nor where they taken on any fancy Hipstamatic app. The light between 2.30 and 4.00 pm today was just magical. One of those days that turns everything into a painting.

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Comments ( 16 )

[…] may remember my post on Portsmouth and how it inspires me, and here is part two of sorts. This weekend I spent a day back in my old […]

Vintage Secret : Hidden Hackney: Inspirations Part Deux commented on Feb 05 12 at 6:07 pm

[…] of Vintage Secret has been extolling the benefits of trading the city for the seaside in her inspiration post on Portsmouth, and now the sun has finally been shining the time is ripe for a time-honoured trip to the […]

Style Cycles: British Seaside | Theatre of Fashion commented on Jun 13 12 at 9:31 am

Ah! You make Pomepy look lovely and me homesick! 🙂

Kat Gibson commented on Jan 10 12 at 5:00 pm

The trick is to split yourself between two places. I am sure I would go nuts full time. Despite that being my plan in the summer!

Naomi Thompson commented on Jan 10 12 at 7:33 pm

Excellent photographs!

And you have summed up exactly how I feel every time I visit Portsmouth/Southsea. It is ancient, historical and inspirational. The sort of inspiration only living by the sea can afford…

Give me Old Portsmouth over Hackney any day…


Padraig commented on Jan 10 12 at 5:40 pm

Boat time approaching fast Pat, just another couple of months! Make sure you book some holiday at that new job of yours.

Naomi Thompson commented on Jan 10 12 at 7:34 pm

That’s lovely. I’ve been re-thinking London myself lately, it’s so expensive to rent there, I’m starting to think I’d be better off commuting with some country in my back garden.

p.s. pre ordered your book after christmas, lookinf forward to seeing your hard work!

Ellie commented on Jan 10 12 at 7:26 pm

Sometimes getting across London would take me about the same time as my commute. It’s getting crazy now. There is not much point unless you are a student or really rich. Please let me know what you think of the book 🙂

Naomi Thompson commented on Jan 10 12 at 7:36 pm

Lovely photos! I want to live next to the sea one day, it really draws me. I bet Portsmouth is quite literally a breath of fresh air after London!

Straight Talking Mama commented on Jan 10 12 at 8:05 pm

Oh how I long to live near the seaside.

Louise commented on Jan 10 12 at 8:07 pm

Lovely pictures! Now I have a new destination (I have to see them for myself).


Astrid commented on Jan 10 12 at 8:08 pm

That great picture of the jetty. Did you know that was from the custom house where your Grandad worked?

mother commented on Jan 10 12 at 11:19 pm

Gorgeous photos! Strange, but I love seaside towns and have yet to visit one. It just seems so lovely to live by the sea.

Mrs. Williams commented on Jan 11 12 at 2:14 pm

absolutely gorgeous! makes me very wistful!

catherine clark commented on Jan 11 12 at 6:39 pm

Love the blog

Ella commented on Jan 16 12 at 5:39 am

I LOVE Portsmouth – I have many a fond memory of spending time with cousins there when I was a child…

Good for you having the balls to up and out of London – it must be crazy £££ living there at times, I don’t know how most people do it!

Hope you find happiness and comfort in your new home Naomi 🙂


ps – I’ll come and be your weekend flatmate anytime 🙂 xXx

Annabel - Love My Dress Wedding Blog commented on Feb 14 12 at 8:07 pm

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