Andy Rumbold: My Favourite Places
Andy Rumbold is the Cobham-based author of The Last Fiesta, his debut novel, published towards the end of last year. It’s set in Spain in the summer of 1995 and follows the hedonistic journey of four old school friends through the Basque countryside. Like any good book, there are twists and turns – dark truths emerge, dreadful revelations are exposed, and the trip changes their lives forever. Andy’s been shortlisted for The People’s Book Prize. A bit like the Muddy Stilettos Awards, this literary award is decided by the voting public. You can vote for The Last Fiesta here.
Andy was inspired to write the novel after a stint living in Spain after university. He went for six months, and ended up staying for four-and-a-half years. Now married with two children, he’s back in Surrey teaching English and Spanish at Aberdour School, in Burgh Heath. And writing novels, of course. He’s working on his second one now. Here are his favourite places in Surrey and beyond.
Platform 3, in Claygate. One of smallest pubs in Britain run by the very friendly and welcoming Alex who brews his own beer (Brightwater Brewery). St Kew Inn in St Kew Cornwall, 15th Century pub with a huge open fireplace. In Santander Spain, El Rubicon bar. Great atmosphere. Live music
Wildwood in Cobham; because the food is good and it’s very kid friendly (as soon as they finish eating they can play outside!). La Orient in Esher – does a great Sunday buffet! Jin Go Gae Korean restaurant New Malden. Wonderful food, great prices. In Santander Spain La Pirula. Great food, wonderful people. Great flagstone floor, very rustic and full of character.
Anywhere in the Picos de Europa mountains, northern Spain. Locally, anywhere up and around Leith Hill.
San Sebastian. Stunning city set in a dramatic bay, best food (mainly seafood) in Spain. Bodmin moor Cornwall. Wild and windswept!
Conisbee’s butchers, East Horsley! Wonderful meat, much of it off their farm. My kids love their cooked sample sausages they have on the counter on Saturdays!
The Last Fiesta by Andy Rumbold (£7.99, RedDoor Publishing). andyrumbold.com
The People’s Book Prize shortlist will be announced on May 15, and the winner on July 12.