When me and my brother were little’uns, our parents would drive us all up to the North East for a few weeks in the summer holidays to see our grandparents. It was the highlight of the year for us kids. We couldn’t afford to go abroad every year like friends at school and my parents worked incredibly hard to pay the bills.

We’d spend all our time with grandma, grandad and various aunties, uncles and cousins. We’d bake, eat boiled “chookie” eggs every morning, feed the ducks at the park, and my ultimate trip out as a kid – for Minchella ice cream in South Shields.

ice cream

For some reason, trips to the beach felt like they were trips to Australia – it was always boiling hot! We’d revel in building sandcastles, paddle in the sea, and finally get to munch on the mint choc chip ice cream of my dreams.

Those summers made my childhood and I loved nothing more than listening to my family have a great time together. My mum’s accent would get broader the longer we were up north, and me and my brother would mimic it.

I have so many amazing memories of those family summers on the beach, eating as much ice cream as we could and enjoying each other’s company – knowing that in a few days we’d travel back to Lincolnshire until next summer.

I loved that ice cream so much, my perfumer friend 4160 Tuesdays created a bespoke scent for my wedding, based on the memory of those trips to Minchella.

You see, I believe that ice-cream is the root of my love for travelling and exploring. And it all comes down to making memories.

ice cream south shields
A teeny me (center) on hols in South Shields.

I remember the beach always being busy, packed with families enjoying the few days of British sunshine together. I can still hear the waves rolling in, the chatter of my family catching up, and so much laughter.

I remember thinking about those ice-cream days as me and my husband strolled hand-in-hand through Central Park, again as a group of my closest girlfriends snapped selfies in a row in Paris, and again watching families eat together on our honeymoon in Sri Lanka.

It’s those kinds of memories that have kept me wanting to create more – with friends, family, my husband, and hopefully sometime in the future with our own kids. I take them with me everywhere. And wherever I go, I always think about eating ice cream at Minchella with the people I love.

Ice-cream taught me to love exploring. And I’ll never forget it.

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