People picnicing on Kennack Sands beach in Cornwall. It was taken between 1900 and 1920.

Children paddling in the sea, at Burnham on Sea, in Somerset in 1909

Punch and Judy Puppet Show


Donkey rides on Bridlington Beach, East Yorkshire 1950s

Victorian Beach Life: Photos of 19th Century Bathing Machines in Operation

Bath Machines

Back in the 18th and 19th century, recreational swimming started a need for aids to maintain decency and etiquette at the beach. These tools of maintaining dignity were perhaps unsurprisingly mostly aimed at women. Among innovations of this time was the Bathing Machine or the Bathing Van, which helped bathers change into their bathing costumes right next to the water.  The passenger entered a horse or human drawn carriage, which is transported some distance out into the water. The person then changes into whatever swimming costume was deemed suitable at the time and entered the water maintaining their modesty.