Discuss the Stages of Development in One Traditional Sport or Leisure Activity (the Seaside Holiday) and in One Newer Sport (Surfing) in Britain During the Last Century. Make Particular Comment on How Changing Social

Topics: Surfing, Seaside resort, History of surfing Pages: 8 (2625 words) Published: March 20, 2011
Discuss the stages of development in one traditional sport or leisure activity (The Seaside Holiday) and in one newer sport (Surfing) in Britain during the last century. Make particular comment on how changing social conditions have influenced access and opportunity for different groups in these two case studies.

This essay will examine the expansion of seaside holiday throughout the United Kingdom. It will examine the impact ongoing changes in the various gender, age and social groups. After this it will analyze these same issues but for modern sport in Great Britain – surfing.

Freelance historian, Kathryn Ferry (2009, p7) wrote, that half of the twentieth century have brought to millions of British people an incredible survival - spending their free time during the holiday at the seaside. Likewise children and adults could not wait to see sights that were possible only during the holidays spending near the coastline. Building sand castles, hanging out at the beach, taking sea and sun bathing, and finally, bragging to friends how great it was to have relax from everyday life. Young bachelors and maidens in holiday saw the chance to make new friends, casual affairs, and spending as much free time just for having fun.

English Professor John Walton, listed the basic elements of 'traditional' seaside holidays. And despite all the changes that have occurred, and receipts from other countries continue to connected with:

“Childish innocence (buckets, spades and sandcastles), nature (starfish, rock-pools and gulls as well as the power and tranquility of the sea itself), simple 'old-fashioned' fun (donkeys, roundabouts, Punch and Judy, boat trips, beach entertainers), and tasty, informal seaside food: fattening, glutinous and eaten out of the bag while on the move, in defiance of conventional table manners (fish and chips, ice cream, candy-floss, cockles and whelks).” (BBC, 2010)

The origins of the coastal holiday dates already in the second half of the eighteenth century, however, most development occurred after World War II, where people can fully enjoy a minimum of six days of paid holiday leave. (K.Ferry,2009,p7)

One of the main means of tourists transport was trains. From the crowded third-class carriages without basic sanitary facilities to an exclusive first class for wealthier residents. With the growing interest of the rich holiday, and the desire to improve the convenience of traveling by trains powered locomotives replaced the electric expresses.

Steamers were another possibility, however, not everyone could afford them. Ease of movement around the boat, fun and make new acquaintances were associated not only with longer-lasting journey but also greater costs.

From the twenties of the twentieth century when there was a development of automotive industry and access to own car was getting easier, have become a popular short trips to the seaside. Holidaymakers were more independent and travel time decreased significantly. Efforts were made to use every day off of work including Bank Holidays. The drawback was the heavy traffic in cities such as Brighton or Blackpool. The development of aviation has contributed to widening ever more distant destinations. (J.Walvin, 1978, p81)

It follows therefore that is where the holiday took place depended on the position in society. Lower classes could not afford to travel far and they are mostly limited transport to trains, which reach only to certain places. This was of course until the car was a good on the agenda.

On Sundays and Bank Holidays the number of people traveling and visiting the seaside resorts break all records. For example: “The South Wales tinplate works stopped for a week at the beginning of August, releasing some 28,000 employees for their annual holiday by 1920. The communal nature of these breaks influenced the way people took their holidays, with friends, neighbors and whole streets going to the same place year after...
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