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Norfolk Broads 1957 Holiday Scrapbook

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I've uploaded a fabulous old scrapbook to the Broadland Memories website this week which I thought may be if interest to some. It was compiled in 1957 by a family who took a two week holiday on the Broads in June of that year aboard the motor cruiser "Somari" which was hired from H.E. Woolmer of Oulton Broad. I picked It up a few years ago, but hadn't been able to do anything with It as It is too large for an A4 scanner. I finally managed to rig up a frame to photograph it instead, which isn't ideal, but It really deserves to have a wider audience so will do for now. It has around 40 pages with a full written itinerary of their cruise, and is packed full of photos, postcards, pictures, cartoons and maps cut from brochures, guide books etc., and other ephemera from the holiday. There are clickable links too to reveal hidden items! The handwriting is a little difficult to decipher in places, but I felt it ought to be displayed as it was compiled as it is such a charming piece of history. It runs over two pages which you can find here:







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Interesting, lovely too!

Back then Bradbeers/Red Whale acted for a number of Broads boat owners, many of whom were unacceptable to Blakes or Hoseasons for various reasons.  "Somari," which was hired by H.E. Woolmer, was a smart boat but the owner didn't operate from a yard thus couldn't partake in the reciprocal mooring agreement that the bigger businesses operated. Because several of these one or two boat independents didn't have the expense of moorings or a yard to maintain their charges tended to be lower than those from Blakes or Hoseasons, inevitably that lead to ill feelings and often Bradbeers customers were refused moorings or help if they broke down.  Unfortunate for the customers and difficult for me as the Bradbeers were long time family friends whilst at that time we were with Blakes and were also friends with our neighboring yards. Oulton Broad Yacht Station, at that time, allowed several owners to turn their boats around from there. A tricky one as 'Fletchers' had their yard in Lowestoft Harbour and then brought their boats through the Lock for the hirers to pick up from the yacht station, difficult because the people at Fletchers were well liked but I suppose that they were regarded as  bona fide thus acceptable. When the Lock wall collapsed Fletchers were cut off from the Broads and their fleet had to make the journey by sea, via Gt Yarmouth. A number of us joined their staff either for the trip or to helm one of their boats. Good old days! The Broads was political, even back then!

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What a lovely story thanks for putting on here, and 3 months before I was even born!

How times are changed

Can you imagine telling someone back then that one day your 'scrap book' would be a blog on an internet site that you could access via a keyboard/monitor or even your mobile phone!  :default_icon_eek:

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45 minutes ago, AdnamsGirl said:

Many thanks for the additional info about Bradbeers. :default_beerchug:

I was only a kid back then but already helping out the family business by helping to deliver groceries to the boatyards. Dad had become involved with Fowlers boatyard and Jimmy Hoseason was a family friend and I roamed the various yards collecting returnable bottles and even had a barrow with which to deliver hirer's luggage to and from the yards and railway station.  

I note that Somari was based at Pegg Marine, another yard in Lowestoft Harbour. Peggs had some, by the standards of the day, very smart boats. Peggs, like Fletchers and Orient Cruisers, was dependent on the Lock at Oulton Broad. I don't remember there being anything but co-operation from the yards actually on the Broad, we were all in it together. The ill feeling that I mentioned related to the one boat operators, of which there were several, operators that were seen as trying to muscle in on the success/industry created and maintained by the 'establishment'.  

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45 minutes ago, Roy said:

Thank you I really enjoyed reading this I’d have loved to have been alive in the days when the broads were buzzing with woodies 

The pungent aroma of creosote, Rentokil & woodworm killer hung like a cloud across Broadland back in the day! Wasn't very successful though!

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