Every Picture Tells A Story, Friends on Holiday 1946

Ivan with pals

This is a picture of my dad and two of his pals and I guess was taken in the summer of 1946 when he was fourteen year old.

I like the picture, it has a swagger and a jauntiness about it, it looks like three boys on holiday and off to the beach.  My dad, in the middle, has spade and his friend on the right has a metal bucket, the tall boy on the left has a cricket bat which suggests beach cricket to me.  I always wonder who took the picture, it isn’t posed but is a walking action picture.

These were surely days of optimism with a country led by a Labour Government that had been elected in the summer of 1945 with a landslide majority and a promise to make everything better and which had embarked on a radical programme of nationalisation including coal mining, electricity supply and railways.

These were the days of the new National Health Service and the Welfare State all based on the optimistic principles of socialism.  And to add to all this good news the United States announced the Marshall Plan to pay for the reconstruction of Europe and that meant over three billion dollars was on the way to the United Kingdom to rebuild its bombed-out cities and its shattered economy.

So where were they?  The picture isn’t dated accurately or gives any specific location, but it does give a couple of clues.

In 1945 my dad lived with his family in the town of Rushden in Northamptonshire where his parents ran a corner shop.  The nearest seaside to Rushden was North Norfolk and I think that this picture was taken somewhere near the seaside resort of Hunstanon, about eighty miles away and easily reached by a Midlands Railway train to King’s Lynn and then a change to Hunstanton on the Great Eastern network.

The properties on the left of the picture certainly have a north Norfolk look about them.  But then again they could be South Lincolnshire, I am open to being corrected.

Dad is wearing a sleeveless cricket sweater, his shirt sleeves are rolled up above his elbows as they always were and he is wearing socks with his plimsolls.  Dad always wore socks with his plimsolls.  This is him on holiday in Sorrento in Italy in 1976.

Ivan Sorrento 1976

40 responses to “Every Picture Tells A Story, Friends on Holiday 1946

  1. I love that picture!! The war was over and the future was theirs!! Thirty years later your dad still has that boyish look about him.

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  2. I don’t think three boys nowadays would be in step. I suppose it must be the effect of six years if watching soldiers march past!
    I have a brilliant DVD about the landslide victory of the Labout party after the war. It’s called “The Spirit of ’45” by Ken Loach.
    At Amazon for 99p, it’s a must if that event interests you
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Spirit-45-DVD-Tony-Benn/dp/B00B26XU62/ref=sr_1_1?s=dvd&ie=UTF8&qid=1551687052&sr=1-1&keywords=spirit+of+45

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  3. I always wanted one of those cricket jumpers. Not a microfibre in sight.

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  4. I like old photos, too, and note that most of us fail to get those details noted on the back or in the photo book for future family questions like who, what, when, where, maybe even why or how. I have many of these of my own family, yet all the people who knew are dead, questions unanswered.

    The digital age will further complicate these mysteries, eh? Thought there is the option of auto-dating and naming of files, most of the important information will, again, be lost.

    All that said, I enjoyed this look back at your family photos! I have a sense of bleakness and deprivation after the war, yet the top one is a happy day, clearly, of friends on an outing!

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  5. i love the jaunty pic! priceless

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  6. Great pic. I think it could have been posed because they are all is step

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  7. Socks with plimsolls, absolutely correct, I even wear socks with sandals, stops the sand getting between your toes. I remember Hunstanton, don’t they have a helter skelter or something on the beach?

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  8. Aw, bless! You must be enjoying the memories, Andrew? 🙂 🙂 I spent an afternoon in Hunstanton once. Lovely place!

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  9. Great photo from the past and as you say – not posed…can you guess who might have taken it by their expressions as they look right at the photographer? Enjoyed the story too.

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  10. i think I’m going to enjoy this new series of yours Andrew.Love to see old photos.

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  11. I noticed the boys walking in order as well, Andrew. They certainly look like they have a purpose in mind. At first I thought it might be clam digging until you mentioned the cricket stick. –Curt

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  12. Great shot for the genealogy scrap book.. 😉

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  13. Your dad looks better fed in 46, that he does in 76, must have been the lack of bananas in 46 and the over abundance in 76.
    That was a great time the election right after the war, I had great fun, it was very exciting, One instance has stayed firmly in my mind ever since;

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    • I thought you were going to tell us about it…

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      • I don’t take over other peoples posts Andrew, I’m English!

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      • But we are all waiting…

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      • Okay if you insist.
        The polling booths for that election were in my school Campbells Infant Junior and Senior, Langley Crescent Dagenham Essex Still there, see it on Google Earth.
        Anyway I was running around like mad it was a real new thing: anyway some bloke, with a big red rosette thing you know what they are, told me that when Labour gets in I’d never have a hole in the arse my trousers again; I turned and stuck my arse up into his face told him that I didn’t have a hole in my trousers now, because my Tory mum had patched it.
        I was what they called a cheeky little sod back then

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  14. When I told my mum she was very proud of me. Didn’t clip my ear for a couple of days.

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