butlins beachcomber bar

Ten years on and still no foreign muck.

It was ten years ago today that me and me dad were at Butlins Holiday Camp in Minehead, England. We went there as part of the trip for my book I’m not eating any of that foreign muck because we went to the same holiday camp as a family back in the late sixties (In those days more than a million Britons had a holiday at Butlins every year). For those that have read my book may recall that my day Harry was 72 back then. Well, he is just about to turn 82 and is still going strong. When we were in the UK ten years ago he kept telling all his relatives that this was going to be his last trip back to England because he was too old. Since then he has been back three times. He has also been on a cruise to the South Pacific, one to Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand and another to New Zealand. On all those trips, however, he still refused to eat any of that foreign muck.

I was reminded of our trip to Butlins when I stumbled across a wonderful collection of Butlins’ postcards from the late sixties (when we were regular visitors). The postcards were commissioned by Butlins to the John Hinde Studio, based in Dublin. They produced a series of elaborately staged photographs, where each photo utilised a large casts of real holidaymakers acting out roles in huge, beautifully lit ‘narrative tableaux’ of Beachcomber bars, gardens, outdoor swimming pools, ballrooms and snooker halls. Here’s just a sample of the fun that could have been and in Britain in 1967:

Butlins-postcards

Butlins-Minehead-The-Old-Tyme-Ballroom-postcard

Butlins-postcards

Butlins-postcards

Butlins-postcards

Butlins-postcards

Butlins-postcards

butlins

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