Tea Towel Souvenirs – St. Mary’s Lighthouse at Whitley Bay


In 2018 the most viewed photograph on my blog pages was a picture of a tea towel that I took in a shop in Puglia in Italy.

Puglia T Towel Map

On account of that I thought that I would begin an occasional series of posts of tea towel souvenirs that I have brought home from my travels and I begin with St. Mary’s Lighthouse in Whitley Bay in Northumberland.

“To me a lighthouse was meant to be lived in. It was part of working life. And ships passing, day or night, knew there was somebody there, looking at them.” – Dermot Cronin, the last Lighthouse keeper in United Kingdom

Since 1998 all of the UK Lighthouses including this one are fully automated.

Click on an image to scroll through the gallery…

This is my post on pointless souvenirs in Spain –

Travels in Spain, Pointless Souvenirs

30 responses to “Tea Towel Souvenirs – St. Mary’s Lighthouse at Whitley Bay

  1. A tea towel. Who’d have guessed.


  2. I know it’s more efficient but a lighthouse without the keepers of the light is not the same thing. That one you have at the top of your post looks similar to the one we have that was originally built at Cape Bowling Green in Qld, dismantled and re erected at the ANMM Sydney


  3. not the same without the human factor


  4. Five out of five for the accuracy of the bird illustrations!


  5. I like lighthouses, and Whitley Bay is one of my childhood haunts, so happy memories here.


  6. I really like the old lighthouses, Andrew. Who doesn’t. The idea of living on the edge of the ocean or a huge lake with incredible views and tremendous storms, and the isolation, which can also be romantic. I, for one, am glad of all of the restoration efforts going on to preserve a bit of their history and romance.
    Interesting about the tea towel. Peggy and I have several from various places as well. They become dish towels. Is that the same? –Curt


    • I have a friend who claims to have once been a lighthouse keeper.
      Tea Towels are dish towels I guess? I had never considered this before but I found this on the web…
      “Tea towels originated in 18th-century England. They were absorbent towels made from soft, lint-free linen. The lady of the household would use them to dry fine china and delicate tea sets, jobs that were considered too important to trust to potentially clumsy servants. The towels would also be used during tea. They would often be wrapped around the tea pot to insulate it and prevent inelegant drips.”
      I have learnt something today!


      • Somewhere we even have a tea towel that features building from the Cotswold that Peggy picked up on her journey a few years ago. It has a hard time identifying with the moose tea towel from Alaska. 🙂 There’s a compatibility issue. –Curt


  7. it looks great and the quote was soo true.


  8. Tea towels must be a Brit thing. Like Curt, I have dish towels, but they are nubby terry things, not souvenirs. I laughed at the pointless Spanish souvenirs, because somewhere I have one of those flamenco dancing dolls in the red dress. I think I bought it in San Antonio TX at HemisFair in the 60’s. That was my in my doll collecting phase. I’ve been through a box collecting phase and a travel pin collecting phase, too. I gave up on the box collecting when my Egyptian in-laws found out about the collection and started bringing me those intricate Arabic boxes. I could start a store. The pins were fun for a while, but I installed them on a denim jacket that is now too heavy to wear. Christmas ornaments were another phase, but these days I have so many that it takes two days to decorate the tree. If I get souvenirs now, I tend to stick to clothing and jewelry, but I only manage to buy anything if hubby is absent. If he’s there, he starts asking a bunch of practical questions and that takes all the fun out of it. Which takes up back to tea towels. Exactly how would one justify the purchase of a tea towel with a map of Puglia or the picture of a lighthouse?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Most places that you go in Europe you can buy a tea towel (dish towel). The one in Puglia was in a shop and I just took a picture of it, I cannot even begin to explain why, Last year we stayed in a caravan at Whitley Bay and forgot to take a tea towel so I had to buy one to dry the dishes.

      I think this tea towel topic is going to take off, I am away tomorrow to see what I can find in Grimsby!

      Off topic but I have to confess to you that I have booked my first ever cruise – Iceland and the Northern Isles – next year (2020)


    • Omigosh, Jane, your last question had me laughing out loud. How, indeed?

      Liked by 1 person

  9. A theme of pointless souveniers! You are brilliant! This one must catch on.


  10. It’s a beguiling place, isn’t it? 🙂 🙂 Had to stop by for a look. Old times’ sake.


  11. Tea towel? That is so funny? Maybe you need to reassess your photography skills going forward 😆. Just joking, maybe it’s more of a British/ European thing


  12. Loving it . . . . they make such great gifts too as they don’t take up any space in suitcase. Goodness knows though what everyone thinks when I bring one back for them!!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.