Murders, ghosts, witches, tsunamis... town has it all

PUBLISHED: 15:08 08 May 2011

Mike Harding will be running walking tours from Weston seafront

Mike Harding will be running walking tours from Weston seafront

Archant

AN ATTRACTION usually associated with sites of infamy or notoriety – like Jack the Ripper’s Whitechapel stomping ground – has been launched in Weston.

Walking tours are regularly run in cities of historic significance, or in areas renowned for their bloody past or ghostly present.

But one history buff believes there is enough hidden intrigue in Weston’s own past that he is launching his own guided tours of the town.

Mike Harding will pack around 4,000 years of history into his one-hour walks, which recount long-forgotten tales from Weston’s bygone years.

Smuggling and shipwrecks, murders, witches and ghosts, and even the little-known tsunami of 1607 are all covered by Mike’s fascinating tourist ambles.

And the 47-year-old – who worked in banking for 30 years before taking voluntary redundancy last year – says he has been prompted to launch the tours because he feels it’s time more was done to highlight Weston’s positives.

He said: “It really saddens me when I hear locals and visitors knocking Weston.

“I moved here in 2000 and wouldn’t live anywhere else. I love the town. It has a wonderful history and fantastic tourist facilities. People of Weston need to hold their heads up high.

“I have always been interested in Weston’s history since moving here.

“I’m constantly surprised and intrigued by the town’s history, especially the stories of some of the fascinating characters who have lived here.”

And he added: “I’m earning a fraction of 
what I did but it’s much more satisfying and enjoyable.”

Mike runs three local history walks a day from alongside the Grand Pier from 12noon onwards, and separate murders and ghosts tours.

Prices range from £2-4 per person, with concessions and school rates available.

Visit www.westonwalks.co.uk for more information.

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