The club trip was the annual childrens treat organised by the Working Mens Club. For those whose families didn’t afford to go on holiday in the 40’s and 50’s it was absolutely marvelous. The kids went free and were given about ten shillings in pocket money, sensibly managed by your parents if you were too young.
The destination varied between mostly Bridlington or Scarborough and the occasional trip to Cleethorpes or Blackpool. Again choice of transport was important and a journey by train was always preferred and eagerly awaited.
Imagine the excitement as the days were counted off to the trip, especially for those who had no holiday to look forward to. On the morning of the trip you could feel the pleasurable atmosphere as families walked to the station from all parts of the village weighed down with packed sandwiches, flasks, pushchairs, buckets and spades. One of the best aspects was, most of your friends were going as well.
Freedom to be able to explore the extensive coaches and to enjoy the view of the journey from the half open coach windows was something we all enjoyed and still remember. Most of the men enjoyed it too with the guards van stocked to the roof with crates of ale. Just imagine, some of them started boozing at 10am on the train.
The journey by bus meant a walk to the club, no problem as we were all motivated by anticipation of a trip to the seaside. Again lots of excited people converging on a line of say 25 tour buses, each one numbered and the tickets previously obtained advised you where to sit.
Different to the train journey but here we always enjoyed the stop at one of the half way houses, which on any Sunday morning in the high summer would be full with hundreds of coaches from clubs from all over the West Riding area.
Arrival at the coast saw a river of trippers walking to the beach and hiring deckchairs. Then for the kids it was who could get stripped into cozzies and be first into the waves. It never seemed as cold in those days and you could keep going in and out of the sea interspersed with sandwiches and ice cream until home time.
Later trips in adolescent life enabled you to leave the family group and go with your friends. Gone was the sea, in came the amusements, helter skelters and dodgems – you couldn’t beat it, however it did teach the lesson about who were the winners on one armed bandits.
The homeward journey was always a bind on the bus, first of all departure time was 6’o clock and the journey seemed to take twice as long.
There was one thing to look forward to – School holidays were just around the corner.