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My perfect weekend: Councillor Edwina Hannaford

By Cornish Guardian  |  Posted: August 24, 2012

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EDWINA Hannaford is Cornwall councillor for West Looe and Lansallos and sits on Looe Town Council, chairing the town tourism panel.

She ran a graphic design and marketing business for 25 years until 2009 with offices in Liskeard and Looe, but is now a full-time councillor while running a self-catering holiday accommodation business in Looe with her husband, Simon.

The couple live with Edwina's parents in the house her grandparents built in Barbican Hill, East Looe.

My perfect weekend would involve good food, old friends, laughter, family, Looe beach, browsing car boot sales and sunshine.

In reality, in common with many in Looe, Saturday morning is changeover day.

We have been blessed with considerate and thankfully clean and tidy guests in the main.

But however spic and span the house has been left, my OCD kicks in and I have to ensure the house is 'Edwina clean'.

My childhood summer holidays were dominated by East Looe beach and swimming. After the stresses of council work during the week, East Looe beach is just the antidote for a frazzled head.

As we stretch out on the concrete promenade and survey the scene, I reminisce about our childhood antics.

Our favourite hangout was 'skiddery rock', just down the slope from The Beach Café, before the concrete prom was built. (Yes we gave names to all the rocks, which included cow rock, penny rock and the infamous Tom Barber's rock.)

Simon is a plunger, I'm an incher.

Looe beach is a shallow beach that gently slopes away, so as I just tentatively walk out of my depth, Reggie Perrin style, ending up a couple of hundred metres into the bay. I love the view looking back to the beach, with 'Khyber pass' to second beach to the right, the zigzag path up Eastcliffe to the South West Coast Path and the kaleidoscope of brightly coloured windbreaks and tents.

I love the shrieks of delight from children as they splish and splash in the shallows. After our refreshing dip comes the ritual of changing out of wet cossies without inadvertently revealing more than we intended. My mother always brought me back to earth and countered my shyness by saying, "No one's looking at you".

Looe and Polperro have an abundance of fine dining establishments; we are spoilt for choice.

We tend to spread the epicurean love so have a strict rotation policy for eateries, but are more predictable in our food choices.

We never tire of the late night stroll around the seafront and pier to complete our day.

Sunday is family day. Summer Sunday's ritual is Sunday papers with mum, dad and mum-in-law Jackie, housework and ironing then our guilty secret; the Lions' organised Waylands car boot sale.

We are systematic in our approach. Up and down the aisles, eagle-eyed for a bargain. Simon looks for vintage computer consoles and games, I'm more practical looking for household items.

Our favourite lunchtime haunt is the café on Seaton Beach or a pasty on the harbourside, unless the F1 is on then I'm the proverbial Formula One widow.

My friends are my rock and I'm blessed with some wonderful supportive girlfriends.

I don't get much time for exercise so Sunday nights my mum-in-law and I speed walk around the town. I never tire of our route, seafront, end of the pier, harbour side, across the bridge, West Looe Quay, Pennyland, Hannafore Road and back.

Simon is the household cook and firmly in charge in the kitchen. I may not have flown too far from the nest and our lifestyle is not very glamorous, but I take much comfort in these simple pleasures in the town I love.

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