Cornucopia at Frinton Railway Cottage
‘Waves of Delight’
A magical lido built into the side of the cliff, a ‘Donkey Derby’ and “an atmospheric show emitting waves of delight” at the Lido Pavilion in Frinton-on-Sea are amongst a cornucopia of treasures cared for by Liz Bruce and her colleagues at the Frinton & Walton Heritage Trust archives.
Of course the treasures are not literally there, but the historical imprint is preserved in the form of records, photographs, theatre programmes, memories, both written and recorded, to prove that these wonders once existed and provided years of entertainment and thrills for tourists holidaying in the town.
The image of the lido transports my imagination back to its heyday. Can you imagine a lido pool perched on the side of the cliffs? How glamorous and ‘very daring’! Not only was Frinton blessed with a lido, but it had an exotic looking restaurant accompanying it which had a distinct Moroccan-influenced architecture. Perhaps you know more about this place of intrigue? We’d love to know more about it’s impact on the town’s entertainment.
Back to the archives
The purpose of our visit to these wonderful archives was to source some primary material for inspiration and research for the Resorting to the Coast Schools Programme. The trip marks the first steps in creating a schools resource box which will help young students discover their town’s seaside heritage and how these towns became some of the country’s most popular seaside holiday resorts in the early development of the British seaside holiday. Town businesses were built around the seaside tourism industry, livelihoods thrived as visitors returned sometimes twice a year to their favourite resorts.
Mercury Theatre is leading the Schools Programme for Resorting to the Coast. Archivist, Claire Driver, and Rebecca Hall, Learning and Schools Producer for the theatre, spent the morning rummaging through the archives seeking inspiration and primary material for school resources. Between now and July 2019 ten schools from Tendring coastal towns will participate in this HLF funded project to discover the seaside heritage on their doorstep.
Thanks to Liz Bruce and Mary for sharing the archives. Next stop Clacton!