What it was like to be a tourist in Great Yarmouth in the 1950s

Great Yarmouth, Joyland. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc

Great Yarmouth, Joyland. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc - Credit: Archant

Take a look at a this video from the 1950s and discover what life was like for a tourist in Great Yarmouth all those years ago.

Great Yarmouth, Market, 1950s. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc

Great Yarmouth, Market, 1950s. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc - Credit: Archant

It's been more than 60 years since this video was made promoting Great Yarmouth to tourists, but many of the town's current features and attractions are still clearly recognisable in the footage.

Produced by Great Yarmouth Council, the video, which features appearances by comedians Tommy Cooper and Benny Hill, was intended to promote the town as a popular holiday resort and was uploaded to YouTube by gypbrc.The video's opening shots show attractions such as the Britannia Pier, the Royal Aquarium Theatre and Wellington Pier while light music - reminiscent of something from an old Disney classic - plays in the background, giving the town a magical feel.

The narrator begins by referring to Yarmouth as 'the east coast playground of Britain' and goes on to discuss the open-air market which is held on a Wednesday and a Saturday and the brightly coloured shops lining Regent Road.

Benny Hill in Great Yarmouth, 1950s. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc

Benny Hill in Great Yarmouth, 1950s. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc - Credit: Archant

Yarmouth's promenade is also praised in the video, with the narrator stating that it is one of the 'most impressive in Europe' and describing it as a 'great, majestic sweep, six miles in length presenting a colourful and animated spectacle'.

Also featured is the snail ride at Joyland, North Beach Caravan Park, Pleasure Beach which is said to be full of 'thrills, thrills and more thrills' and the 'magnificent' Venetian Waterways which we are told will make you 'feel as if you were floating on a cloud'.


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Everything in Great Yarmouth is romanticised, with even the cold sea breeze and average weather unable to escape a hearty sugar coating as the narrator states: 'The bracing air and temperate climate combine to make life really worth living.'

Great Yarmouth, Regent Road, 1950s. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc

Great Yarmouth, Regent Road, 1950s. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc - Credit: Archant

Despite the cheesiness of the video, it succeeds in its aim and creates a positive image of the town as a fun place for everyone. 'It is fun when you're young and when you're not quite as young as you were'.

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• What are your memories of Yarmouth in the 1950s? Leave them in the comments below.

Tommy Cooper in Great Yarmouth, 1950s. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc

Tommy Cooper in Great Yarmouth, 1950s. Photo: YouTube/gypbrc - Credit: Archant

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