BUTLINS SKEGNESS REDCOAT REUNION 2008

The Reunion proper started at 7.00pm on Friday 23 May,
with Registration and Wine Reception in the Royal Arthur Suite.

BUTLINS REDCOAT REUNION 2008

Above we see less than half of those in attendance, almost all of whom did
us proud by dressing up in evening wear.

Saturday morning commenced at 10.00am with a meet-up in the Convention Suite. This was immediately followed by "Scrapbook Corner," where all the former Redcoats were invited to bring in scrapbooks and photos from their Butlins' days. I was told beforehand that no-one would be interested, but whoever said that couldn't have been more wrong. I laid out six tables in anticipation but then, as photo albums began to flood in, I had to quickly arrange a further six or more tables to accommodate them. So popular was the display of photos, that the Redcoats left them out, for all to see, until the very last minute before leaving on Monday morning.

Just one of the photo stalls, being besieged
by  former Redcoats.

And here is another group of ex-Reds, eager to trace
the history of their Butlins' peers.

And here's a stall with TWO attractions.:
Firstly Heri Harrison herself, whose history with Butlins goes back to 1946.
Then of course her photos, from Skegness 1947; Mosney 1948; and Skegness 49.

 The two guys used to wear red coats,
but now they've switched to blue jumpers.
L to R: MIKE ONIONS, RAY ALLEN,
JANET ONIONS and EVE ALLEN

PETE LACEY meets up with his Children's Auntie,
CHRISTINE CHEESEBOROUGH, whom he
worked with at Skegness 1974

Here Pete is reunited with four of his teammates
from Barry Island 1972.
VAL MARTIN, KELLY KELLEHER, PETE LACEY,
and brothers RAY and MIKE MARTIN

Sunday morning found us all on a Ramble around the Camp, looking for any building which those lovely 1990s "developers" might have left standing.

The Ramble started off from where the South Swimming Pool
used to be. The story that Ringo Starr fell into this pool, after
tripping over a dead elephant, when he was emerging from the
Rock & Roll Ballroom one night, was discovered to be based
on two true stories.

As the prevailing wind begins to chill us to the bone,
Val Chambers (on the left) is seen to be turning into an iceberg.

Towards the end of the Ramble I was able to indulge myself in a further bit of nostalgia, and arranged with our kindly group to recreate a photo I'd had taken in 1973, outside the then Queens Showbar. Not a bad effort, is it?

A.J MARRIOT BUTLINS SKEGNESS

A few things have changed since 1973: the women have got shorter; the children have got taller,
and my hair has gone down the plughole. Poor thing!

L to R: ELSIE HILL (wife of "Uncle Arthur" from Minehead 1963) "A.J" MARRIOT, and HERI HARRISON
plus one bemused child who was snatched from the passing crowd.

At first glance, when walking around the Camp, it appears that all the pre-1986 buildings on the Skegness site have been demolished, except for the Queens Building and the Ingoldmells Hotel. However, there are actually a few more, although they are hard to recognise as they have been covered in cladding. Um!! Classy!!

On the left is the Ingoldmells Hotel as it looked in its heyday.

And here is the Ingoldmells Hotel as it looks now. Progress, hey?
Billy Butlin must be turning in his grave.

On Sunday afternoon we had rehearsals for our "Redcoat March," before performing it on Sunday evening.
The 3.30 rehearsal contained just SIX volunteers, from which TWO dropped out. However, come 6.30
the numbers had risen to FOURTEEN, which allowed for a far more respectable presentation.

The twenty minute rehearsal proved to be a little too little,
but most were pleased to have been involved.

The main attraction of the Reunion is to meet old friends,
closely followed by meeting new friends. Below are examples of both.

BILL & BEN The Flowerpot Men reunited.
Actually its Uncle Ray King (Allen) and
Camp Compere Mike Onions,
who had worked together at Skegness in 1972.

CAGNEY & LACEY Reunited.
Alias Valda Warwick (Ayr 1978-9) and
Paula Manchester (Skegness 1973-74).
They arrived as single travellers, and left as good friends.

Here are Val, Ray, Martin and Pete enjoying
a drink, when, without warning ...

... a giant crane picked them on and,
dropped them back in their chalet
.

GIRLS, GIRLS, GIRLS

Kelly Kelleher and her party of six girls. And when I say "party" - these girls really knew how to party.

Three ex-Reds who met their wives at Butlins, and are still married all these decades on.

Frank & Marion Worrall - Barry 1969

Alf and Elsie Hill - Minehead 1963

Sham and Val Chambers - Barry 1972

Our grateful thanks go to Eve and Ray Allen, Kelly Kelleher, Val and Sham Chambers, and Rob Lewis, for the above photos.

If you're not pictured here, that's because you haven't sent me any photos!!

More photos will be added when I receive them.
o-o-o-0-o-o-o

2008 REUNION GUEST LIST

2008 REUNION PROGRAMME

REDCOAT REUNION RANDOM REMARKS

Back to Home