BRIGHTON 1972 - Ocean Hotel, Saltdean

ANN O'NEIL
Butlins Brighton 1972 Ann 1 at Redcoats Reunited
Butlins Redcoat 1969 to 1972
Barry – Pwllheli – Brighton

 Hi A.J
My name is Rebecca Hambly. These are photos and memories of my late-mother's happy times as a Butlins Redcoat. I'm still trying to piece things together, but know she was a Redcoat in various camps from 1969 to 1972.


Ann O'Neill with Graham Hambly

My dad, Graham Hambly, was a lifeguard at Butlins, and also appeared on stage on a number of occasions. “The Gargles Three” has been mentioned in the past - maybe this was an entertainment group he was in?

My mum and dad met in 1972 and married a few weeks later, in Merseyside, Mum had to work at Brighton Butlins the very next day and wouldn't see Graham again until 2 weeks later when he arrived.



 Graham first caught Ann's attention when she saw compering some of the Butlins' competitions.

I'm not sure how long my mum was at Barry Island for, but she sang at the Gaeity Theatre and Pig & Whistle Bar, under the stage name Samantha Jones - I think. (One of her many stage names!!).


When you can enjoy singing together ... and have a social drink together ...
That's a good receipe for a long marriage.

On Sept 3rd 1969 she won first prize in The People National Talent Contest at Pwllheli but in October 1969 she was disqualified from taking part in the semi-finals at Butlins due to her being a Redcoat earlier in the season, but she had apparently given up her job on the staff to enter the competition. In 1970, she entered the competition again and won her heat.

On the 1st October 1971, under the stage name Samantha McCoy, she signed a contract to appear in the touring show “Here Come the Redcoats” from October to December 1971, with Mike Onions, Terry Dale, Frankie Day, Sham Cody, Cathy Power and the organist Sid Longden. They toured Working Men's Clubs, and also did several RAF bases.



If anyone can help me piece these fragments together, I’d be grateful.
You can write to A.J Marriot via the link below, with any information.

Thank you, on behalf of my mother and father –

ANN O’NEILL and GRAHAM HAMBLY.

 Kind regards,

 Rebecca Hambly


BUTLINS BARRY 1969 - Ann O'Neill

BUTLINS BRIGHTON 1972 - Ann O'Neill

BUTLINS BARRY REDCOATS 1969

BUTLINS BRIGHTON REDCOATS 1972


To share your Butlins Redcoat photos with this site,
please email 'A.J' Marriot, using the link below:



Redcoats Reunited homepage