They are ex-breakfasts, they have ceased to be

Guest columnist Peter Palmer laments the passing of a good breakfast at English bed and breakfast establishments.

Remember the days when a stay at an English Bed and Breakfast meant a morning feast that would leave you patting your belly with satisfaction, a smile on your face and thoughts of how to work it off in time for the next morning’s binge? It’s a treat that seems to have largely been consigned to faded memory. Maybe I am just a tired old git with nothing better to do than moan about how the world’s going to pot and nothing is as it was in the glorious days of my own youth. But I think I’ve got a point. I’m now in Cornwall – a wonderful place in almost all respects. But the breakfast has been a bitter disappoint, and brought to my mind other similar experiences of breakfast bliss denied in recent years. Plastic sausages from the bottom of the deepest freezer in cut-price supermarket hell; bacon that tastes of nothing much except salt; eggs that taste of hardly anything at all; and extra-value orange juice at 17 pence a litre (is it really orange juice?).

And this is one of the things foreigners once thought we did well. The numerous Germans here in Cornwall will perhaps be thinking that the English breakfast has gone the same way as the British motor industry. Or maybe they are thinking it was a fantasy all along. Anyway, Cornwall is great and well worth visiting. But if you want a good breakfast, opt for self-catering.

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