In 1963 my grandparents bought the St. Elmo Hotel in Southsea as a going concern.  As such, it already had bookings for the upcoming Summer.

One settled, they were quickly up and running.  Over a very short period they got to know the local area and it’s tradesmen etc.  Their Greengrocer was Sir Alec Rose and across the street, on ‘The Circle’ was a Dental Practice.  The Dentists walked into the Reception one morning and said “Hello” to my granddad who asked why he had a suitcase with him?

“I’m on Holiday Eddie” replied the Dentist.

“Pardon?” said my Granddad.

“I’m on holiday Eddie, I come here every year.”

“Every year!”

Apparently, every summer the Dentist packed up his suitcase, put up the ‘Closed For Summer Holidays sign and locked the door for a week. 

He would then walk across The Circle into the St. Elmo Hotel as he did last summer, the summer before that and even the summer before that!

Why?

That lovely old dentist liked to wake up in the morning, walk across the street to his Practice, collect his post and then back to the hotel for to a Full English, the only way to start the day and cooked by my Nan.  It then off to his local for a few pints with his friends, soak up some sunshine, have a spot of lunch and then of to a local tourist attraction or bathing on the local beach.