On Saturday we visited another British seaside town – Broadstairs in Kent, and I thought I would share a couple of photographs of the day.
Being a nice sunny day the beach was fairly busy with families. Again, what I liked was the simplicity of it all, and the family atmosphere. There were places to eat and drink in the town but the beach itself wasn’t a nest of commercialisation.
Away from the beach the town was buzzing. Some of this was because Broadstairs’s Folk Week was on. With the short season of most British Seaside towns it is important to make the most of the summer, and having events and festivals is an important part of this. But I think the lesson to learn is that you can make these fesitivals and events for a wide market. We didn’t go there because we are heavy duty fans of folk music, but there were many people there for the weekend, if not the whole week, who were/are. Like us, there were many visitors who just liked to soak up the atmosphere and catch the open-air events which were on and musicians and dancers who were wandering about, performing in public. There were also things going on especially for children, which were also fun for the adults to watch. We enjoyed ourselves watching the kids getting really excited by the Hooden Horses, engaging with them, and doing the hookey-cookey with them (I am assuming that this must be the first many of them had heard of the hookey-cookey).
As well as entertaining the kids, this is a fantastic investment for the future – in 20 or so years time these children will remember their time at the traditional British seaside and ensure that it is part of their regular leisure activities, holidays and days out.
This is what our seasides (and town centres generally) have to do – when designing their activities ensure that there is something for everyone – you don’t have to dumbdown but you can provide ways in for those who know nothing as well as provide quality entertaiment for the die-hard fans and experts who are willing to pay.