Monday, April 11, 2016

Happy Birthday Butlin's!

Today marks the 80th birthday of Butlin's Holiday Camps. On the 11th April 1936 Billy Butlin opened his first camp in Skegness, Lincolnshire - and the business is still going strong today.

I love the British seaside with all its quirks, eccentricity and traditional entertainment. I grew up on holidays at Butlin's holiday camps in Minehead, Bognor Regis and Ayr - and spent many summers in the 80's and 90's at the Barry Island Holiday Camp which used to be a Butlin's camp.

I spent many great holidays at Butlin's Minehead. It was nice finding these badges at Hitchin Market recently

In fact my parents met at a Butlin's! At the Clacton-on-Sea camp way back in 1975 and this year they are celebrating their ruby wedding anniversary.

It's probably in no small part because of our childhood stays at holiday camps - and all the fun they had to offer - that Emily and I have spent the last ten years travelling around the UK coast on our Crazy World of Minigolf Tour. We also visited Butlin's Minehead (formerly Somerwest World) on one of our first holidays together in 2004.

As well as being home to the first Butlin's holiday camp, Skegness is also the site of England's first Crazy Golf course.
It opened in 1926

Over the years we've built up a great collection of miniature golf postcards, and we always keep an eye out for Butlin's cards. They're such colourful and fun cards, and seeing the monorail at Minehead brings back so many happy memories.

Within our postcard collection we've got a great selection of old and new Butlin's postcards. The images on the classic John Hinde are fantastic and it's been great to receive cards from our family when they've been to the camps in recent years. The oldest Butlin's card we have was posted on the 4th June 1951. It shows the Putting Green at Butlin's Luxury Holiday Camp in Pwllheli, Wales

Look at the size of the golf ball on the tee at the Butlin's Putting Greens. The monorails were marvellous too

Last summer we visited Skegness, and while we've not been inside that camp (yet) our friend Peter Jones was coincidently there at the same time for a Five Star concert and managed to buy me a stack of great badges for my collection.

Good luck to Butlin's and all the best for the next 80 years...

- Butlin's
- Butlin's blog
- John Hinde postcards

Related blog posts:
- Crazy World of Minigolf Tour

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