Original article from Kent Live
Petticoat Lane Emporium is a vintage shopper's dream.
In fact, it's the sort of wondrous place that should be pretty much anyone's dream.
Situated in Ramsgate, the market lays claim to being biggest in Kent, a 10,000 sq ft historical warehouse with over 200 independently rented stalls.
It's open seven days a week, including Bank Holidays.
Signing up to the KentLive newsletter means you'll get the latest news direct to your inbox twice a day.
It couldn't be simpler and it takes seconds – simply press here, enter your email address and follow the instructions. You can also enter your email address in the box below the picture on most desktop and mobile platforms.
You can also sign up to our website and comment on our stories by pressing here and signing in.
All of these things mean that, as an East Kent resident myself, I was quite surprised not to have heard of the place until last week.
And that's probably for the best, at least as far as my wife is concerned.
A couple of years ago we went to Brighton for a weekend away, and I ended up having to be dragged out of The Lanes after spending not an inconsiderable amount of our money on a Mexican chess set made of stone.
When she caught me soon after bartering over one of those creepy, single doll limbs that they seem to sell in abundance, it was the final straw.
Petticoat Lane Emporium reminded me of those fantastic vintage, antique and collectable shops you see up and down the Lanes.
Clothes, crockery, tools, musical instruments – the place sells pretty much everything.
I only had a £10 budget though, and a limited amount of time.
First I went for an obvious choice – an edition of "Bygone Kent", a 1983 publication that described itself as "a monthly journal on all aspects of local history".
What better way to spend time and money than by learning a thing or two about proper journalism.
Issues covered in the 1983 publication included a murder in Deal – proof that some things never change.
Next I tried to find something we'd decided would be genuinely useful for family life at home.
We need a new board game.
Lockdown has taken its toll, meaning we are sick to death of both Scrabble and talking to each other.
Step forward a little gem called "Touring England".
According to the box it's "an entirely new and up-to-date map game… requiring skill and judgement", also promising to be "exciting", "interesting" and most important of all "educative".
My wife seemed thrilled when I showed it to her when I got home.
Finally, I bought an item which I still have no idea what it is.
It was found in a section next to incense sticks and candles, covered in what appeared to my very untrained eye to be Indian writing.
It's called a "Satya Nagchampa" – or indeed that could be the branding.
Only one side of the box contained English writing, and it was directions for use rather than a description: "Light the top of the cone & wait till it burns evenly. Blow out the flame and place the cone over the stand provided."
Still clueless, I still cannot wait to try it out.
And again neither could my wife, based on the look on her face when I showed it to her.
That was it in terms of loot for the day.
An interesting book, an interesting board game, and a means to commit arson.
And all for just £9.
In all seriousness, I had a lot of fun in Petticoat Lane Emporium, and I've no doubt anyone who goes there will too.
The staff and stall holders were very friendly, and it was literally crammed with interesting items.
If you needed any more reasons, it's also only a stone's throw from Ramsgate's stunning seafront and harbour.
Another hidden gem, right on our doorstep.