Seaside traditions on the way out
With summer seemingly upon us, comparisons with the holidays of bygone years are as inevitable as peeling skin and complaints about the heat.
A study of 2,000 families has found that traditional seaside activities are rather less popular than they were 30 years ago, with postcards, sticks of rock and deckchairs all fading, sepia-tinted memories.
The Beach Retreats survey compares holidays taken by parents now with those they enjoyed when they were children,
And those innocent days seem a long time ago, with four in ten people putting remembering their phone above taking a towel to the beach, and 68 per cent saying that they’d be unable to fully enjoy a trip to the seaside without their mobile.
Technology may be partly responsible for the change in attitudes - for example, the rise of the smartphone has seen us snap an average of 81 photos and upload them to social media, whereas 30 years ago three-quarters of us would have sent a postcard home.
And perhaps the most iconic holiday sight of years gone by, Punch and Judy, will only be enjoyed by 16 per cent of children today, compared to the 54 per cent of parents who experienced it when young.
Andrew Easton, business manager for Beach Retreats, who commissioned the research, said: "The results give an interesting look at which activities are standing the test of time when it comes to how we spend our precious holiday time."
"Being a contemporary beachside holiday letting agency we embrace modern technology in abundance. From breath-taking Instagram photos to Facebook updates and quick tweets – sharing your holiday moments on social media is now an essential part of everyone’s holidays."
The full list of bygone seaside activities, with the figures of 30 years ago in brackets
Walked along a pier: 70 % (83 %)
Built sandcastles: 69 % (91 %)
Played in a penny arcade/2p machines: 66 % (77 %)
Dig holes in the sand: 61 % (83 %)
Explored rock pools: 58 % (72 %)
Walking along a promenade: 58 % (74 %)
Ate fish and chips wrapped in newspaper: 50 % (74 %)
Ate a stick of rock: 38 % (79 %)
Sat in a deck chair: 32 % (68 %)
Sending postcards: 30 % (75 %)
Went on a merry-go-round: 29 % (56 %)
Went crabbing: 27 % (37 %)
Kite flying: 22 % (42 %)
Went on a donkey ride: 18 % (64 %)
Beach cricket: 18 % (33 %)
Going on a helter skelter: 17 % (42 %)
Watched a Punch and Judy show: 16 % (54 %)
Visited a model village: 16 % (44 %)
Changed in a beach hut: 4 % (16 %)