The Butlins Girls- Elaine Everest


This was a lovely nostalgic look back at childhood holidays for me. We had a week at Butlins every year and this book brought back the sights and smells that I remember well- along with those red jackets!  I was transported into another era alongside the memories of my own – making this such a wonderful book to escape into. My niece actually got a job as a redcoat this year but turned it down to go travelling around India and Vietnam. I guess I can see the attraction of that (!) but I was looking forward to a weekend trip to Butlins again.

I loved the historical background to the book- I hadn’t realised that the war overtook the camps for the troops during the war. I also enjoyed hearing about their duties – remembering pirates walking the plank at the outside swimming pools and the red coats walking cheerfully through the holidaymakers.  The cover also brought memories flooding back. We have photos of us paddling in the circular water fountains and the building and outside pool areas. I adored every page of this book!

I loved the characters who develop a heartwarming friendship after starting work at the same time. They are all hiding some form of heartbreak and together they make a start on healing those bruises. Johnny Johnston, a star of the silver screen is working there as an entertainment manager and I know a lot of our big stars worked at Butlins during the formative stage of their careers. Is he the answer to the healing process for Molly?

I had looked at The Woolworths Girls many times, thinking it sounded like another wonderful read and I have now downloaded it at the bargain price of 99p and can’t wait to start reading that. I was also thrilled to read that there are sequels planned for the Woolworths girls and I hope we make a return visit to Skegness soon.



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