This weekend me & my sister Victoria went on a little trip to Dorset to visit our cousins in Lyme Regis.

It was a flying visit as one of the guys is about to venture off on a round-the-world trip for 6 months, so we drove down in the evening, caught up with family, and spent the night in our aunt’s house right on the seafront.

Now, my aunt has lived in Lyme for as long as I can remember, and her house is like the family holiday home. I remember long summers spent there exploring the beaches, looking for fossils, eating ice cream and candy floss, and messing about with boats.

The house has remained largely unchanged over the decades. It’s old and draughty, spread over 3 floors, and bursting with collections of books, prints and paintings, china and ephemera. It’s like my parents house, but more ordered and exotic!

Looking round now I appreciate what a strong influence it has had on me.

I am such a hoarder. I love old things, and have always collected bits and pieces, starting as a young child at antiques and flea markets with my pocket money burning a hole in my pocket.

I still have some of those finds, old tobacco tins, silver jewellery charms, Art Deco tea sets, faded Victorian photographs, and I treasure them just as much now.

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