The Midland Hotel - Morecambe

Home Page / Art Deco Home / Midland 1933 / Midland Home Page / Gallery / Our Visits / Film & TV / Notable Events / Postcards

The Midland Hotel in the 21st Century

Original LMS poster

The original 1933 poster advertising the Midland Hotel as England's latest seaside hotel

Modernist Britain

Midland Hotel streamline Moderne

Modernist image

Images © of Modernist Britain

September 2017

Preparations for the 5th outing of the 'Vintage by the Sea' Fun Fun Fun Festival at the Midland Hotel!

Vintage by the Sea 2017 Poster

Wayne Hemingway hashtags my Fb page My Midland Hotel Fb page

It's quite gratifying to see that the Festival backed by Wayne Hemingway hashtags my modest little Fb fan page tribute to the fabulous Midland Hotel! (A far cry from the nasty and dismissive e-mail he sent me when the Midland was derelict and I was a humble member of the 'Friends of the Midland' LOL - what comes around turns around! Definition)

June 2017

The annual kitefest held on the beach behind the Midland Hotel.

Kites at the Midland

Kites at the Midland

Kites at the Midland

Images courtesy & © of moremusic.org

May 2017

The Midland Hotel a perfect backcloth or 'Bus Stop' for the beautifully restored double decker bus.

Restored Vintage Double Decker Bus 2017

The Ribble Vehicle Preservation Trust will be operating its popular ‘Vintage Bus Running Day’ in Morecambe Sunday, May 28th, 2017.  There will also be a display of vintage buses and coaches on the promenade near the Midland Hotel.

April 2017

2017 Aeriel view of the Midland Hotel April

April 2017 Aeriel view of the Midland Hotel

Two fantastic aerial views by Sean a UK CAA Approved aerial drone photographer & cinematographer

December 2016

Drinks at the Midland

A lovely array of refreshing cocktails in the Rotunda Bar

Midnald Hotel December 2016

Christmas lights in the restaurant at the Midland Hotel 2016

All decked out for Christmas and then the magic inside to follow - all images courtesy and © The Midland & English Lakes

October 2016

MH - October 2016

Beautifully captured image of the Midland - courtesy and © of Dominic Cumming

April 2016

Space Toy det

Space Toy

Going up: Sam the mascot begins his ascent over Morecambe. He was attached to a helium balloon along with GPS tracking equipment and cameras - Image courtesy and © of Mercury Press

Watch Sam being launched from the Hotel on You Tube

Harness repairsBalloon launch

Harness repairs prior to the launch from the Midland Hotel roof

Sam has the MH as a backdrop as he ascends

Sam has the Midland as his backdrop as he ascends into the sky

Sam has the MH as a backdrop as he ascends

Sam keeps the Midland as a backdrop as he ascends and swirls until he catches his 'space wave'

From the Morecambe Visitor

Cuddly dog launched into space from Morecambe

Sam was filmed by specially attached GoPro action cameras and tracked by GPS equipment as he rose, propelled by a helium balloon, from the Midland hotel roof at a rate of six metres per second. The mascot of the Morecambe hotel was launched by a team of Morecambe Bay Primary School pupils as part of a science project. They joined forces with Midland Hotel managers English Lakes Hotels Resorts and Venues and SentIntoSpace.com for the launch in windy conditions on Tuesday morning.

Children cheered with excitement as the canine astronaut took one small step for Sam and one giant leap for dog-kind. School pupil George, aged 10, from Morecambe said: “We’ve made history for the school here today and I’m excited to have helped send a toy into space.” Ben Berry from English Lakes said: “This has been an exciting science project for the children – it has put them in charge of their very own edge of space mission and we were more than happy to give Sam the Dog the chance to follow in Tim Peake’s recent footsteps. “We were fortunate enough to get a nice clear day which has provided some stunning aerial photographs and footage from above Morecambe and the whole bay area.”

The UK Space Agency also provided the school with a real life space suit for the children to learn about space survival.

Siobhan Collingwood, head teacher of Morecambe Bay Primary, said: “We have been able to tailor lesson plans, presentations and worksheets around the project to add to the usual science curriculum. “We will also be using the data and the images recorded from Sam the Dog’s flight as teaching materials. It all contributes to the learning experience for the students and provides a sense of visual achievement.”

Chris Rose, from Sheffield based SentIntoSpace.com, said: “We have a passion for practical science projects like this and for helping students of all ages and abilities become more engaged in learning. “Sending Sam the Dog into space was an ideal opportunity for the children to learn more about gravity, meteorology, technology and of course travel at the edge of space.”

From the Daily Mail

Sam the fearless space dog lost in action 12 miles above Earth: Hunt for toy sent to edge of space only for contact to be lost as he fell to the ground

- Sam the toy dog was sent to the edge of space as part of a school project
- He was attached to a helium balloon, GPS tracking equipment and cameras
- Hunt has been launched for the toy after it lost contact with ground control
- Sam could have landed anywhere across a swathe of northern England 

If you find a bedraggled cuddly toy dumped on the ground today, give it a second look – you may have stumbled across a pioneer of space exploration. The hunt is on for Sam the toy dog, who was launched to the edge of space as part of a school project before contact with ground control was lost. Space scientists say he could have come back to earth anywhere across a swathe of northern England and have appealed to the public to be on the look-out.

 

The white fluffy toy was attached to a helium balloon along with GPS tracking equipment and cameras on Tuesday before being released, travelling more than 12 miles above the Earth’s surface. Pupils from Morecambe Bay Community Primary School in Lancashire – who monitored Sam’s flight to teach them about space and illustrate the curvature of the Earth – enjoyed several stunning images showing him floating high above the planet. But after the balloon popped and the equipment returned to earth, landing around 48 miles to the south-east in a field near Burnley, Sam – the mascot of a Lake District tourism organisation – was nowhere to be seen.

 

Now mission scientists are grappling with the hitherto overlooked discipline of the aerodynamics of a toy dog in the hope of tracking him down. And if that fails, a luxury stay at the art deco Midland Hotel in Morecambe is being offered to anyone who finds and returns the toy. Ben Berry, of English Lakes Hotels, Resorts and Venues, which has put up the reward for the return of its mascot, said: ‘Space travel is a risky business and Sam’s freefall didn’t quite go as planned.’ Siobhan Collingwood, headmistress at the school, said: ‘The children would love to see Sam the dog safely returned with tales to tell of his adventures.’

 

Chris Rose, of Sheffield company Sent Into Space, which works with schools around the country on budget space projects, said: ‘We’re pretty sure Sam landed within a 40 to 50-mile radius of Burnley. He could have landed in North Lancashire or as far afield as York, Sheffield or the Peak District.’

 

June 2015 - Catch the Wind Festival

Kites on the beach at the Midland Hotel

Numerous 'kites' 'catching the wind outside the Midland Hotel - image courtesy and © of The Midland Hotel & English Lakes

September 2015 - Party Time

September 2015 Link to Fb page

September 2015 - a happy view of the Midland Hotel as the centre of attention on a sunny day - image courtesy of Morecambe & Heysham Past & Present

Chisel and Mouse Sculptors - 2015

Midland and Ocean on Chisel and Mouse

Once again the Midland and its twin the Ocean Hotel feature on the 'same page' this time in an initiative launched by Chisel & Mouse sculptors

Champagne Afternoon Teas - 2015

Afternoon Tea at the Midland

Great to see the Artwork reflecting the 1930s period!

Fly Past 2014

Flypast over the Midland Hotel

Image courtesy of Zoe Humpage via Vintage by the Sea

Fly past the Midland Hotel

Image courtesy of Richard Gill and Great Impressions

Vintage-by-the-Sea - 2014

Green Car at the Midland

I love Veteran and Vintage vehicles - isn't this great? Image courtesy of Kris Littlewood

Pontiac

A Pontiac for us to admire - courtesy of John Bleakley

The 1968 Miss Great Britain Reunion - 2013

In November 2013 a group of the contestants from the 1968 contest gathered together for a meal and get together reunion.

Contestants recreating the 1968 publicity shot on the Midland stairwell and the 21st century Menu Card for the occasion - thanks to © English Lakes for the use of the images

Iconic Backdrop - 2013

Tutti Frutti Girls at the Midland Tutti Frutti at the Midland

Tutti Frutti Copyright - Tutti Frutti Morecambe 2007-2014 / Image copyright The Visitor taken at the 2013 Tutti Frutti Festival

Rotunda Make-Over - 2013

Eric Ravilious and his wife Eileen Lucy "Tirzah" Garwood Jonquil Cook and Isa Clee-Cadman 2013

Eric Ravilious and his wife Eileen Lucy "Tirzah" Garwood in 1933 and Jonquil Cook and Isa Clee-Cadman 2013 (© Christopher Holmes photography)

Work in Progress

Artists materials and reference book

Scale of Rotunda Makeover

Featuring on our front page - the wonderful re-painting of the original murals by Eric Ravilious and his wife "Tirzah" Garwood by modern day artists - Jonquil Cook and Isa Clee-Cadman 2013 work in progress - The Midland Ravilious Rotunda Bar Christopher Holmes Photography

1933 - 2013 - a celebration of 80 fascinating years

80 year poster

Cleverly using the original poster design brings the Midland up to date to celebrate its 80th anniversary without losing its iconic status

Country Life - 30th May 2012

The Midland Hotel, Morecambe

Emma Hughes May 30, 2012

Oh, we do like to be beside the seaside. Or we did. Nowadays, the majority of Britons opt to spend their summers abroad, basking in guaranteed sunshine-and how our coastal architecture has suffered as a result. Half a century of minimal investment and cack-handed planning has left what were once truly splendid resorts looking seriously the worse for wear. Margate, Turner Contemporary aside, is forlorn and unlovely. Blackpool, in its heyday a grandly curlicued wonderland, has been tragically diminished. Meanwhile, Saltdean’s beleagured Lido, perhaps the finest in the country, soldiers on, the threat of closure casting a permanent shadow over its waters. All along our shoreline stand historic buildings that brought inestimable pleasure to millions of holidaying families, and we have shamefully neglected them.

The Midland, that Modernist masterpiece on the Morecambe seafront, has been one of the lucky ones. It closed its doors in 1998, the umpteenth victim of the decline in British bucket-and-spade tourism. For almost a decade, the building stood derelict and at the mercy of the elements, before being rescued by Manchester developers Urban Splash. It reopened in 2008, and thanks to the sympathetic stewardship of management company English Lakes, it remains a sight to gladden the heart of conservationists (and Poirot fans-it featured in a 1989 episode) everywhere.

Opened in 1933, the present Oliver Hill-designed building (which replaced a gloomy Victorian railway hotel) was built to blend harmoniously into its surroundings, with a façade that followed the line of the new municipal promenade and marine-themed artworks by Eric Gill. It was quite unlike anything that had come before, and within a season it had become the place to be seen on a summer’s day. Society high-flyers flocked there in search of seaside seclusion (the roof allowed high-profile guests to sunbathe away from prying eyes), rubbing shoulders with the stars who were performing at Morecambe’s Winter Gardens. On any given evening, you might have found Noël Coward sipping a Bullshot on the terrace while Laurence Olivier held forth in the restaurant, and George Formby, Jimmy Clitheroe and a brace of big-band leaders swapping stories about the night’s show in the American Bar. Winston Churchill, Gloria Vanderbilt and even Edward VIII were said to have passed through the doors, and the impromptu parties held at The Midland went on until dawn. Think Chateau Marmont-on-Sea. The critics couldn’t get enough of The Midland, either. Writing in the Architectural Review, Lord Clonmore (a steady fellow not usually given to whimsy) described the building as ‘rising from the sea like a great white ship, gracefully curved’. Architecture Illustrated devoted an entire issue to it. And a Country Life correspondent was so delighted by the dramatically cantilevered central stairway that he likened it to ‘a fairy staircase that one would willingly climb ‘til it reached to heaven’.

Following in said correspondent’s giddy footsteps, my fellow traveler and I set off from London on a cheerless, drizzly day, hoping for some restorative sunshine. When we arrived in Morecambe three hours later (having changed onto a fun-sized train at Lancaster), we weren’t disappointed. The Midland sparkled invitingly on the seafront, and just across the water rose Cocklaw Fell, Warton Crag and the Fairy Steps. If you’re keen to see the Lake District but don’t fancy bedding down among Beatrix Potter memorabilia, this would make an excellent base.

Inside, The Midland makes good its aesthetic promises. The lobby was all shining marble and ocean-liner chrome, and somebody was playing Cole Porter songs on a grand piano. I couldn’t have been more delighted if Bertie Wooster had bounded up and asked me whether I’d seen Jeeves. My Country Life predecessor was right about the main staircase-spiraling elegantly upwards towards an Eric Gill ceiling mural, it’s one to glide down in a bias-cut satin dress and diamonds. Lacking either of these, but still keen to change for dinner (given our surroundings, it felt only proper), we headed for our room. The fittings and fixtures were bang up to date, but still very much in keeping with the spirit of Streamline Moderne-clean lines and soothing sea-spray hues prevailed. The long, curving dining room, with its glass frontage, commands what must be one of the finest views in England, if not the world. With the sun setting in spectacular fashion before us, my companion and I worked our way through a menu that made excellent use of locally sourced Lancashire ingredients. Potted shrimp, Morecambe’s signature dish, was impeccably executed, soused in mace-flecked butter and served with warm, crusty sourdough. Mains of monkfish and salmon were, as you’d expect, beautifully fresh. And sticky toffee pudding-which, I’m told, was invented across the bay in Cartmel-rounded things off in stonking style. The staff couldn’t have been nicer, and they all seemed as buoyed-up as we were by the surroundings. After planning the next day’s adventures-a trip to Lancaster Castle, fish and chips for lunch, a gentle wander through the fields inland-over a nightcap in the chic Rotunda Bar, the two of us made our way back to our room, full and contented. There, we fell asleep with the windows open, listening to the sea.

The Midland is a special place. Were I, like little Eloise in Manhattan, to be given the run of a hotel of my choosing, I would pick it in a heartbeat. Long may it serve as a shining example of best practice to those with dominion over our waterfront buildings. To paraphrase Philip Larkin (himself keenly appreciative of the ‘miniature gaiety of seasides’), we should be kind to them, while there is still time.

Iconic hotel calls for 1930s memorabilia - Visitor 15.12.2012

Families, friends and former guests of The Midland in Morecambe are being asked to dig out memorabilia from the hotel’s golden past.

Revamped Midland

With the iconic hotel reaching its eightieth anniversary in 2013, English Lakes Hotels, Resorts and Venues is seeking souvenirs and mementos which may have been stashed away for years in attics and drawers, with a view to putting on a commemorative display during the Midland’s milestone year.

In its hey-day the art-deco masterpiece was an immensely popular place to stay for the wealthy Edwardian middle classes from across northern England.

It also attracted the era’s celebrity set including Coco Channel, George Formby, Wallis Simpson and Noel Coward.

“The sort of things we are looking for are photographs, letters and postcards from the golden era of the 1930s, as well as other items such as original towels, napkins, cutlery and menus,” explained The Midland general manager Matt Stanaway.

“Anything really which former guests might have kept for sentimental or nostalgic reasons to celebrate or record their time at The Midland.”

“It has always been a fabulous venue for parties, balls and weddings, as well as an historic destination for honeymoons and family holidays. “We’re just as keen to hear from people who have a story or specific memory about The Midland which they would like to share.”

Early Review - Sunday Telegraph - October 2009

Telegraph review 2009

Obscured dialogue - 'eventually recovered from the back of a lorry is back in place' - says it all doesn't it?

Ready for Business - the Midland re-Opens in 2008

The grand opening finally happened, as promised by Urban Splash, on 1st June 2008 on the 75th anniversary of the original opening in 1933 (yes, I know we all know that the hotel opened in 1933!) Compare the two aerial shots here and on the 1933 page and it is clear that the original footprint of the hotel remained unchanged. The car park has lost its central feature to accommodate more cars and the roof has gained an additional storey which houses the de-luxe suites but everything else has remained which is what makes it so very special. The hotel differs from both the Aviator and Burgh Island in as much as it has been re-fashioned, re-imagined and brought up to 21st century specifications and standards both of which have allowed for some of the original materials to be retained e.g. the Seahorse mosaic in the entrance hall and the roundel on the stairwell ceiling. Both Burgh Island and more so the Aviator have both been preserved rather than renovated.

Aeriel view of the Midland Hotel on completion

We have the Lancaster Guardian to thank for this stunning aerial image which was taken by BAE Systems photographer Chris Ryding and remains their copyright.

Although this image was taken in 2014 it reflects, just as much as the original 1933 picture, how the hotels looked 75 years apart - not much in it really is there? This photograph was taken from the cockpit of a Eurofighter Typhoon jet (which has a top speed of 1,320 mph) on Wednesday, 19th February, 2014

Midland Hotel launch plans gather pace - Visitor 12.10.2007

Urban Splash is preparing for the re-opening of the Midland Hotel in Morecambe with the launch of a media campaign to attract the first guests.

Midland Hotel Model

An artist's impression of the restored hotel

The 1930s-built hotel will open again in May 2008 and the Manchester office of public relations agency Staniforth has been retained to drive anticipation ahead of the launch, as well as sustaining interest once it's open.

Urban Splash acquired the site in 2003 and began a restoration programme. Scaffolding on the Art Deco building will begin coming down shortly.

Olivier Delaunoy, operations director at the Midland Hotel, said: "The Midland Hotel is a much-loved building, it's a joy to work with it. It's particularly special for us, being our first hotel project."

Private Eye - 2002

Private Eye Article

From : Private Eye Magazine : " Nooks and Corners : Midland Hotel - Morecambe in General

Lancashire County Council

Lancashire County Council have provided some historical aerial shots of the Midland Hotel Promontory :

Current plan of the promontory proposed by Lancashire County Council

Recent aerial view of the promontory

1960s aerial view of the promontory - all images courtesy and © of Lancashire County Council / Images Morecambe-Bayweb.Proboards.com

Back to Top

Page refreshed : 11th August 2017