Anne, Jenny Finch, Marcia, Carol Massey
JENNY FINCH adds: Carol
is not shown on the team photo. SKEGNESS
1962 REDCOAT TEAM. I think she had a couple of days leave.
Brenda McGuire, who was in the team photo, was also RB, but was only
Skeggy when it was taken. Her main base was Bognor. She trained Carol
and I at the beginning of the season at the Filey camp. RIGHT: Anne(e).
Radio Butlin girls were trained by Brenda McGuire in Filey that year,
week before the start of season. We found the consul quite complicated
first, there were so many knobs and buttons to press. Apart from all
announcements we made during the day, we had to play interval music
various ballrooms. I made my first big mistake on the first week and
rock music into the Empress Ballroom, and Viennese music into the Rock
Ballroom. Unknowingly, until Frank Mansell (Entertainments Manager) was
on the door saying the campers were complaining in both rooms. It
music for the early morning calls we broadcast that year was Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah, by Ray Conniff and his
Orchestra and Chorus.
Saturday morning I rode around the camp on the RB bike to check all the
speakers were working, and to send in a report to the engineer. I
found that the speakers were ripped down in the teenage chalet lines,
definitely didn’t want to hear the early morning calls.
afternoon a week I broadcast a record request programme, in which
posted requests in to a box outside RB. There was only a list of about
records for them to choose from. The reason being we only had 12
records on the
Campers were split into 'Houses' - the names of which depended on which
part of the Camp their accommodation was, and/or which Dining Room they
There was always
intense rivalry between the Redcoats, as we were allocated to one of
which we then had to
mentor and cheer during all the sports, games, and competitions.
Below are some of the banners proclaiming which
House you were in:
GLOUCESTER (and KENT),
CONNAUGHT, WINDSOR, WARWICK, EDINBURGH
morning march through the Camp to whip up the rivalry between houses.
That's Johnny Killick nearest to the camera. And that's me, Jenny, on the
right, being given a piggy-back by Bob.
Sunday morning march. Under the banner is Redcoat Andy King, who is
thumbing his nose at Camp Tramp/Comic - Lou Grant. To the left of Lou
"Prof" whipping up the supporters of Connaught House.
Ken Wood (in white shorts and shirt) whose way of whipping up the crowd
is a little more leisurely
The Redcoats taking on the
winners of the Tug O' War competition.
Right to left: (first six only) Joe, Johnny, Andy King, not known, Ken
|BUSKING at BUTLINS
|Even for outdoor games, there was nearly
always music. Here we see Redcoat Frankie, one of the bar entertainers,
playing the accordion. Helping
the lady to climb on the back of the man in the black suit is Joe.
Back-up is Ken Wood and Carol Massey.
|Classical music being performed by this lady
violinist. Note the
two Redcoats girls, who were there to lead the applause.
|Just off camera on the right is the music
podium, on which Frankie is playing music for the ladies to dance to.
Not sure what is was:
Can-Can, Scottish Reel, Irish Jig, or the first ever performance of
Barrie and I can be
spotted behind the lady second from right, and Carol between third and
don't know what this choir ensemble is, but all the Redcoats seem to be
thoroughly enjoying it, which is what we did with most events. Some of
the names are: Bob, Olive, Ken Wood, Carol Massey (with song-sheet),
Andy King, Johnny Killick, and Joe (behind Johnny).
RB girls were not allowed to appear in the Redcoat shows, which were
the Gaiety Theatre every Wednesday, as we had to monitor the sound from
the circle. This was a bit disappointing as Carol and I really wanted
to be a
part of it. But, in addition to our RB duties, we did sometimes fill in
for other Reds in competitions etc.
|Jenny (me) assisting children's entertainer
Uncle Boko, during the "Father & Son" competition.
|Camp Tramp Lou Grant, adding a bit of
comedy to the "HOLIDAY PRINCESS" competition.
Monday evening some of us Redcoats did a demonstration of ‘The
Lancers,’ in the Empress Ballroom. Lou Grant (the 'Camp Tramp') was my partner.
[That's us, with our backs to the stage]. We all had
to be serious, except Lou, and we finished up in a heap on the floor.
It was hilarious. The campers loved it.
|It was unusual for TWO Redcoats to be
allocated to the same table,
but I don't think these two gentlemen were complaining.
We worked very
long hours, and gave it all our energy, so it was always good to top
ourselves up with some added fuel.
Another welcome break was
my chaletmate Carol and I snatching a little rest in our chalet.
|Carol Massey, my
chaletmate, and I became really good friends, and I would love to
make contact again. She may have got married and changed her surname,
have had no luck tracing her. If you have any information on her
please email A.J Marriot, via the link below, and he will forward it
Thank you. Jenny
was such a fun season, hard work but great fun. Ringo Starr was playing
'Rory Storm and the Hurricanes' in the Rock & Roll Ballroom. He
weeks before the end of season to join a group called The Beatles, back
Liverpool. The rest is history.
Colin Crompton was the camp comic for all the
resident variety shows. He went on to be one of the regulars in the TV
‘The Comedians’, and then cemented his fame as the Concert Chairman in ‘The Wheel Tappers and Shunters Club.’
so enjoyed being a Redcoat, and wouldn’t have missed it for the world.
Jenny Freebairn (nee Finch)