This film is part of Free

Reminiscences of a Fortnight Spent at Duporth Holiday Camp

Life's a beach to these 1930s pleasure seekers, for whom two weeks at a Cornwall holiday camp is the holiday of a lifetime

Amateur film 1935 40 mins Silent


Good morning campers! The holiday camp boom was on the horizon as the Hertfordshire family in this film make the long trip to south Cornwall for a fortnight's hijinks with relatives and friends. The filmmaker is clearly a keen amateur cineaste, experimenting with set-ups and slow motion - aided by a distinct familiarity with a number of the fellow campers. The occasional scenes beyond the bubble of the camp to local fishing villages are also well-shot.

Duporth Holiday Camp near St Austell was only in its second season when our guests arrived in September 1935. Billy Butlin would open his first camp in Skegness in 1936 and after the interruption of the war (when many sites were used for internment and military camps) such resorts went through their golden age. Duporth itself was bought by Butlin's in 1972, but after a number of name changes it closed in 2006.