LISA GRAY, AUTHOR

Where is it?

Blackpool, the seaside resort in Lancashire.

Why do you go there?

For fish and chips by the sea. Getting sunburnt – or blown away by the wind depending on the weather – on a striped deckchair on the beach. Digging toes into wet sand. Hearing the clip-clop of donkeys’ hooves. Eating candy floss and trying to win a cuddly toy on the pier.

Taking in a show at the Winter Gardens. Trying not to break a tooth on a stick of rock. Trundling along the Promenade on the tram (apparently Blackpool’s is the only surviving first-generation tramway in the UK).

How often do you go?

I spent many summers there with my family when I was a youngster. I never wanted to leave and could happily have stayed there all-year round. It’s probably been around 10 years since my last visit and a wee daunder down the Golden Mile is long overdue.

How did you discover it?

For decades, thousands of Glaswegians have been making the annual pilgrimage to Blackpool during “The Fair” holiday in July.

My family was no different. Me, my mum and dad and my older brother would travel down by coach and get hugely excited by the first sighting of Blackpool Tower.

HeraldScotland: Author Lisa GrayAuthor Lisa Gray (Image: Bob McDevitt)

What’s your favourite memory?

One year there was a tea dance taking place in the Tower Ballroom. All these older people were dressed up to the nines and a live band was playing old-time tunes. It was like a scene from a Second World War film.

Of course, I had to join in. I might never get the opportunity to appear on Strictly Come Dancing, but I can always say I danced at the world-famous Tower Ballroom in Blackpool.

Who do you take?

Blackpool has become a popular haunt for stag and hen nights and big boozy weekends but, for me, it will always be a place for spending time with the family.

What do you take?

Clothing for all weathers – even at the height of summer you can expect anything from scorching sunshine to torrential rain and everything in between.

A pocketful of spare change for the amusement arcades. A big appetite for all the junk food. The right people to enjoy it all with. And maybe my dancing shoes, just in case …

What do you leave behind?

Memories every bit as golden as the Golden Mile.

Sum it up in a few words.

Loud. Tacky. Bright. Old-school. Nostalgic.

What other travel spot is on your wish list?

New York City. I feel like I’ve visited it a million times in movies, TV shows and books but have never actually been there. Seeing the likes of Times Square, Central Park and the Empire State Building in real life would be pretty surreal.

The Dark Room by Lisa Gray is published by Thomas & Mercer, £8.99, out Tuesday