Days Gone By: How holidays by the sea led to huge growth in Felixstowe

Felixstowe in August 1888. The pier is now in the centre of this view taken from close to where the

Felixstowe in August 1888. The pier is now in the centre of this view taken from close to where the Town Hall was built four years later. There were then very few buildings towards Landguard point (background). Picture: ARCHANT - Credit: Archant

Felixstowe grew in the 19th and early 20th century – partly because of the Victorian and Edwardian fashion of bathing in the sea and holidays on the coast, writes David Kindred.

Goat cart rides were popular at Felixstowe in the Edwardian period. This photograph was taken at the

Goat cart rides were popular at Felixstowe in the Edwardian period. This photograph was taken at the bottom of Convalescent Hill around 1910. Picture: ARCHANT - Credit: Archant

In the middle of the 19th century it was a village of around 600 people.

A rail link with Ipswich was built with a branch line from Westerfield, by Colonel George Tomline, of Orwell Park estate at Nacton.

It had a station to the south of the town, which opened in 1877.

Colonel Tomline’s vision was a new town, seaside resort and a port on land he owned to the south of the town.

The 2,640 foot pier on the sea front (there was another at the port) opened in July1905, connecting

The 2,640 foot pier on the sea front (there was another at the port) opened in July1905, connecting the town with the steamer services from London. The Woolwich Belle was the first to call, operating a service between Ipswich, Walton-on-Naze and Clacton. This photograph was taken in 1911. - Credit: Archant

The Felixstowe line was bought by the Great Eastern Railway in 1887 who wanted to boost the desire for holidays by the sea.

A new station was built nearer the expanding town and the wooden station to the south became Felixstowe Beach Station.

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As the summer holidays are now in full swing I have taken a look a vintage photographs of the resort showing how our ancestors enjoyed the refreshing sea air.

What are your Felixstowe memories? Write to David Kindred, Days Gone By, Ipswich Star/EADT, Portman House, 120 Princes Street, Ipswich, IP1 1RS or send an email.

Victorians on the beach in 1889. The bathing huts were so that swimmers could enter the water unseen

Victorians on the beach in 1889. The bathing huts were so that swimmers could enter the water unseen. Convalescent Hill in the left background was then just a dirt track. - Credit: Archant

In July 1965 the fountain at the front of Charles ManningÕs Amusement Park had soap liquid added. Am

In July 1965 the fountain at the front of Charles ManningÕs Amusement Park had soap liquid added. Among those who enjoyed the resulting bubble bath were dancers from the summer show at the Spa Pavilion. - Credit: Archant

Hamilton Road, Felixstowe, from the corner of Victoria Street around 1907. Hamilton Road opened in 1

Hamilton Road, Felixstowe, from the corner of Victoria Street around 1907. Hamilton Road opened in 1898, connecting the Town Station and sea front. When this photograph was taken this part of the road was called Victoria Parade. - Credit: Archant

A busy Felixstowe sea front in July 1964. An open topped bus is carrying passenger along Sea Road.

A busy Felixstowe sea front in July 1964. An open topped bus is carrying passenger along Sea Road. Felixstowe scene in summer season 20 July 1964 Reference: A140/1-7 - Credit: Archant

There was a steam powered chain ferry across the River Deben from Felixstowe to Bawdsey. The Lady Qu

There was a steam powered chain ferry across the River Deben from Felixstowe to Bawdsey. The Lady Quilter was built in Plymouth in 1894, this and the smaller Lady Beatrice operated until 1931 when they were scrapped. Bawdsey Manor is in the background. The first part of the Manor was built by Sir Cuthbert Quilter in 1886. - Credit: Archant

Bank Holiday Monday 1883, from close to where the leisure centre is now. The earth bank in the foreg

Bank Holiday Monday 1883, from close to where the leisure centre is now. The earth bank in the foreground was part of a battery for soldiers from the Martello tower on South Hill. - Credit: Archant

Felixstowe in August 1888. The pier is now in the centre of this view taken from close to where the

Felixstowe in August 1888. The pier is now in the centre of this view taken from close to where the Town Hall was built four years later. There were then very few buildings towards Landguard point (background). - Credit: Archant

Who were these two in the temporary bubble bath at Charles ManningÕs Amusement Park, Felixstowe in J

Who were these two in the temporary bubble bath at Charles ManningÕs Amusement Park, Felixstowe in July 1965? What memories do you have of the roller-coaster ride in the background? Write to David Kindred, Days Gone By, Ipswich Star/EADT, Portman House, 120 Princes Street, Ipswich, IP1 1RS or e-mail info@kindred-spirit.co.uk - Credit: Archant

Felixstowe beach was out of bounds during World War Two with the beach and promenade covered with ba

Felixstowe beach was out of bounds during World War Two with the beach and promenade covered with barbed wire and tank traps as defence against invasion. This photograph from the pier was taken in 1944. - Credit: Archant

This aerial photograph of Felixstowe was taken in May 1964. In the bottom left corner is ManningÕs a

This aerial photograph of Felixstowe was taken in May 1964. In the bottom left corner is ManningÕs amusement park and the bowls green in St Edmunds Road. The pier is top right. (photo by Tony Ray/Archant). - Credit: Archant

A busy day at Felixstowe around 1930. Most visitors were well covered, with men in suits and ladies

A busy day at Felixstowe around 1930. Most visitors were well covered, with men in suits and ladies in long dresses and sun hats. This photograph, taken from close to the entrance to the pier, has Convalescent Hill on the left. - Credit: Archant

1889

1889 - Credit: Archant

Felixstowe beach, looking towards Landguard Common, from near the pier in 1964.

Felixstowe beach, looking towards Landguard Common, from near the pier in 1964. - Credit: Archant

Young bathers at Felixstowe in the late 1940s. The pier was partly destroyed by explosives during th

Young bathers at Felixstowe in the late 1940s. The pier was partly destroyed by explosives during the Second World War to stop any invasion forces. - Credit: Archant

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