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Image Album - Seaside

IoE number 222512 © Mr John GilesThis selection of images will be relevant for:

  • KS1 Geography unit 4 'Going to the Seaside'
  • KS1 History topic 3 'What were seaside holidays like in the past'
  • KS2 Citizenship unit 9 section 4 'New Uses for empty buildings'.


You can use the image album in your classroom in a variety of ways:

  • The images can be dramatically displayed for whole class teaching on a whiteboard or copied onto acetates and projected on an OHP.
  • You can print out individual images or captions or copy them into a worksheet of your own design.
  • Pupils could do further research and show their findings in a presentation illustrated with these images.

For more ideas on using this image album in the classroom and a list of useful sources... click here
For 'How to Guides' on searching or using images here

IoE number 393232

© Mr Peter Clark LRPS

Needles Lighthouse, Shorwell, Isle of Wight

Lighthouses were built to warn ships away from dangerous rocky parts of the coast. This one was built in 1859 to replace an earlier one on top of the cliff. Men used to live in them to maintain the lights but they are now all automated.


IoE number 443957

© Mr John Turner

The Old Harbour, East Harbour and Old Pier Scarborough, Yorkshire

Towns and villages grew up where there was calm water for boats to shelter in. Later on walls and piers were built to form more protected harbours. Scarborough's old pier was built in Tudor times and the harbours now shelter a mix of fishing and pleasure boats.


IoE number 437281

© Mr John Turner

Salt Pan Well Steps, Whitby

Fishermens' houses were often built on the steep slopes of the cliffs that rise up behind the coast. This view is typical of the older parts of seaside towns with narrow streets and houses huddled close together to take up less space and for protection from storms.


IoE number 101811

© Mr Trevor Fenwick

Poole Hill, Bournemouth

From the eighteenth century it became fashionable for rich people to visit the seaside. Towns on the coast began to change as new buildings were constructed for visitors. This building was constructed in 1860 in the Regency seaside style of architecture which can be seen in many other seaside towns mainly in the south of England.


IoE number 222512

© Mr John Giles

Cromer Pier, Norfolk

The Victorian era saw a boom in the development of seaside towns as the invention of the steam train made it easier for people to travel. New structures such as piers were built. They allowed visitors to walk out and take the air and often had buildings on them.


IoE number 390879

© Mr Mike Thompson

Torquay Pavilion, Devon

Pavilions were built to provide entertainment and refreshments. The style of architecture in seaside locations was often a particularly flamboyant version of the current architectural fashion.


IoE number 183677

© Mr G M Smith ARPS

Promenade Shelter, Queen's Promenade, Blackpool, Lancashire

This shelter was built of cast iron around 1905 to allow people to sit and look out to sea protected from the sea breezes. Promenades are a common seaside feature allowing access to the beach and also enabling people to take healthy walks along the coast. The promenade at Blackpool stretches some miles so trams run along as well.


IoE number 326535

© Mr John Turner

Battery Parade Whitby

The sea front at Whitby illustrates several seaside features including a beach, protective sea wall, two old customs look-outs for spotting boats that could be smuggling in illegal goods, a funfair and a massive block of houses and hotels built on top of the cliff in Victorian times to cater for visitors.

Whitby today combines fishing and tourism.


IoE number 443955

© Mr John Turner

The Spa Scarborough

People started visiting the seaside because doctors believed sea water was good for them, both to drink and to bathe in. This spa, which was the most fashionable place of entertainment and rendezvous during the Victorian hey-day of Scarborough and frequented by the Prince of Wales, was built on the site of a mineral spring. 'Taking the waters' was a popular pastime in the nineteenth century.

IoE number 427554

© Mr Ken Clark LRPS

The Kursaal Amusement Park, Eastern Esplanade, Southend on Sea, Essex

This building is the remnants of a Victorian amusement park which originally covered twenty six acres and included a menagerie, music hall, funfair, ninety shops and fifty-three houses.

After becoming derelict it was rebuilt in 1998 and now houses ten pin bowling, themed bars and restaurants, an amusements and fun area and a casino. It makes a feature of its Victorian architecture and heritage with a display of old photographs.


IoE number 385315

© Mr Andrew C. Letchford

Tinside Lido and Changing Rooms, Plymouth, Devon

The 1930s saw another wave of building in seaside towns. This sea water bathing pool built in 1935 in art deco style is typical. It stands between the sea and the cliffs and is part of the landscape of railed terraces, shelters and steps down to the beach.

Lidos were very popular up to the 1960s but many, like this one, fall into a state of disrepair, often a source of disagreement between planners who want to redevelop the site and local people who wish to preserve them.

IoE number 385315

© Mr G M Smith ARPS

Lytham St Annes, Lancashire

Relaxing in the sunshine, sheltered from the breeze, with a view of the sea. Many older people move to the seaside after they retire from work.

Ideas for using these images in the classroom
  • Use the photographs either to introduce a topic on the seaside or for revision at the end of a project. Ask pupils to find examples of the following seaside features; harbour, sea wall, beach, cliff, pier, promenade.
  • Make a general timeline showing how a small fishing community would typically have developed into a large resort - list the natural and man made features. Alternatively make a timeline based on an actual resort using a combination of photographs from Images of England and historic photographs. Click here for tips on finding historic photographs. A search on the theme 'seaside' on the Viewfinder website will find a selection of historic and more modern images.
  • What was it like to live in a lighthouse? How did the lighthouse keepers get there? Did this change over time? What were the advantages/disadvantages of living in a lighthouse? SeeThe Lighthouse Keepers Lunch for a relevant story book.
  • Using the photograph and list description of the Kursaal amusement park and the Kursaal web site compare a Victorian amusement park with a modern one. Older pupils could consider; What does this demonstrate about changes in leisure pursuits? How important is 'heritage' to modern tourists?
  • Using the photograph and description of Tinside Lido. Look on Images of England for more lidos and search the Viewfinder website, local studies library or web for images of lidos as they were. Compare what they were like with how they are now. Try to make a list of reasons why they have declined. Ask older pupils to prepare power point presentations using images, either in support of preservation or making the case for closure. Hold a vote when the presentations have all been seen. Use a local example if possible. Visit this website for news about Tinside Lido.

Useful sources

Seaside Holidays in the Past, English Heritage Photopack ISBN 1-873592-515 2001

The Lighthouse Keepers Lunch Ronda and David Armitage ISBN 0140308277

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