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The Opening Of The Filey Holiday Camp Station By The Rt. Hon. Lord Middleton, M.C. at 10.30am on Saturday 10th May 1947 - Courtesy of Butlins Archive Department

  Sylvia Collins Of Hornsea
Holidays 1946 & 1947

During the Second World War Sylvia's father worked as an ambulance driver in the city of Hull. During the Blitz of Hull he was in a building on Ferensway, which took a direct hit. Although very injured he survived the bomb unlike the doctor he was working with who was not so lucky. Following this, Sylvia and her sisters left their house in Anlaby High Road and went to a boarding school in the Lake District where they thought it safer. They later followed their mother and father to Surrey where their father worked on a 'hushed' radar mission.

After the war, the family came back to their hometown of Hull. Back with his apprentices, who had also returned from the war, their father continued with his stained glass business. Sylvia and her family considered themselves very lucky and because of the business could afford to have a week’s holiday. Along with her parents, their friends and families and two of her sisters, Sylvia went to Butlin’s Filey in the summer of 1946 and then again in 1947. This was such a treat. Hull turned out to be one of the most bombed cities in Britain. During the war years Sylvia often thought that Britain and the allies would never win, so remembers the trips to Filey afterwards as such a happy time. Everything was new and fresh; people were just starting to get back into the swing of things after many long dark years.

She remembers her chalet being very basic but that did not matter one bit, other things made up for it, like the immaculate gardens and views. The first holiday coincided with Sylvia's sixteenth birthday and she recalls how shy she was after being made to stand on her chair in the dining room while everyone sang 'Happy Birthday'. The most poignant memory for Sylvia was the camp's ballrooms, how gorgeous and opulent they were, "I had never seen anything so beautiful.” To this day she can still remember how they smelt, the fresh polish. It was such a joyful and uplifting time.


Disclaimer - This site is dedicated to preserving the memories and heritage of the Filey Butlins camp. It has no connection whatsoever with Butlins, Bourne Leisure or any associated companies, nor has it been endorsed by them.

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copyright images - Sarah Daniels