Sex Education Star Chris Jenks Opens Up About His Love For Arran

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Sliddery Beach on the south coast of Arran.

How did you discover it?

Through the adventures of childhood. The beach is down a track from the village I grew up in. I would take our dog, a Labrador named Brandy, for walks there almost every day.

To get there, you take an overgrown path down the hill, then round the corner where there is a ruined thatched cottage covered in ivy. I always found it scary walking past this place when I was a kid. From there, you descend through fields to reach the beach.

It is a rocky beach with lots of seaweed and large breakwaters jutting out to sea. There is a small stretch of sand which, at low tide and on a lucky day, is sometimes visible.

If you look over the water you have the Mull of Kintyre on the right hand side and what we call ‘Spoon Island’ in the middle – I don’t know its real name. Then you have Ailsa Craig further on the left. On a clear day you can see Northern Ireland.

How often do you go there?

Every time I come home. My parents still live there and when I visit I will be going down to the beach. It is a good place for a contemplative walk.

What are your favorite memories?

It was an interesting place to hang out when I was a kid. Many animal bones washed up on the beach, such as whale vertebrae, bird skulls, and the bones of sheep and cows. You’ll also find things like tires, fishing nets, and driftwood.

I remember going with my two best friends towards the end of my time in school – it must have been fifth or sixth grade. We would sit there on the beach and chat for hours.

Who do you take?

I love going there alone. I also like to walk with my brother or my mother to chat and catch up. If I have friends staying I’ll take them to the beach because it’s nice to show them a bit of my childhood and where I’m from.

What do you take?

Newspaper, matches, a barbecue, sausages, buns, a warm jacket and rubber boots.

What are you leaving behind?

A desire to stay dry. When you’re trudging and trying not to slip on rocks, it keeps you present in the moment. It is a good place to disconnect from modern life.

Sum it up in five words.

Savage. Dirty. Isolated. Peaceful. House.

What other travel location is on your wish list?

I have done a few solo trips and visited Barcelona recently. I would like to visit Berlin next.

Chris Jenks stars in new crime drama Karen Pirie, STV, tomorrow, 8 p.m.

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