ILFRACOMBE- 18-21st Feb.2011.
The bronze Bootscooters and friends this year went to Ilfracombe, North Devon for our annual 4 day holiday. The coach left the Bronze Club at 8.00 o’clock and arrived at Ilfracombe approx 4 o’clock, where we were met by Nick one of the family hotel owners, who welcomed us with a short informative talk, then into the hotel for a welcoming cuppa.
The hotel was the Osborne which has 53 bedrooms all pleasantly furnished with full facilities including bath/shower. It has a large ballroom with a fully sprung dancefloor and plenty of seating for us all -it also has a small games room and it’s own sauna. The lounge bar is warm and comfortable and that’s where we all seemed to meet on occasions, especially during ‘happy hour’.
On Friday night after a lovely evening meal, we all attended a Race Night run by our ‘friendly, extremely funny and entertaining’ compere Nick – I think there were a few fiddles and favours going on as we certainly didn’t win any money, but there were a few who did very well – not to mention any names !!!!! After the race night it was up the ballroom for a couple of hours of line dancing and even later than that you could stay at the bar as long as you wanted (and some did).
Saturday morning, although some a little bleary eyed after the night before, we had a super breakfast, then onto the coach for our ½ day shopping trip into Barnstable, which is quite a pleasant shopping centre with an undercover market- The ladies thoroughly enjoyed themselves getting loads of bargains and the men – well they just seemed to hunt out the various ‘watering holes’ – in fact some didn’t go on the trip but stayed in Ilfracombe to watch the FA cup matches on TV.
On return to the hotel there was a 2 hour linedance workshop and once again Brenda had arranged for Kim Aldis to attend the session. Kim is always willing to visit us and teach a couple of dances on our holiday. Kim is a brilliant teacher and dancer and in fact does many of the Isle of Wight Linedance Tours. Everyone enjoyed seeing Kim again and the dances she did for us. Thank you Kim and of course Roy.
After another superb evening meal it was once again off to the ballroom for the evenings entertainment of all types of dancing, including line, partner, waltz, rock n roll, jive etc, music being played by a local DJ, who was brilliant, his choice and range of music was superb. Once again another late night for those who attended the ‘late bar’.
After breakfast most of us boarded the coach for Lyton and Lynmouth – some of us had been there before, but it is most certainly worth a visit especially to have ride on the historic Hydro Lift Railway.
The weather was lovely, even plenty of blue sky and shopping was still on the agenda for many in these quaint picturesque villages.
On return to the hotel we had a short linedance workshop for some as many had really done so much shopping and walking they were too tired to even raise their feet to linedance once again. Many stayed in the bar or had a few hours kip, before exploring Ilfracombe and having their evening meal followed by the last nights entertainment with a guitar vocalist who played a wide range of music, which as always went on until late!
I think we all felt a little sad that Monday morning had arrived and it was time to leave for home, and after saying our ‘good-byes’ to the hotel and it’s staff (not forgetting Dolly the dog) it was time to return home to the Wirral.
This is one of the best holidays we’ve had, the accommodation and food at the hotel was excellent. The staff and management were superb, nothing being too much trouble, and even the weather was reasonably good and a really great group of people.
The shock of the holiday was our Portugese coach driver- Paulo - who never failed to surprise us. He joined in all our entertainment and was just a great load of fun, even danced with us all. What a really nice chap who helped to create the brilliant fun and atmosphere over the whole weekend- and not a bad driver either!!!!
And as always, from myself and Bill we would like to thank all those who went on the holiday for their generous gift and their pleasant company – we hope to see you all during the year and thank you again for helping us have a fabulous time.
We could certainly recommend anyone thinking of going to stay at the Osborne Hotel in Ilfracombe to be assured of excellent service in a friendly hotel.