Beach pho­tog­ra­phers loved the ‘Dirty Boys’

Let's Talk - - Postbag - PAUL GOD­FREY Low­est­oft, Suf­folk

Thank you to Mrs Olive Bar­ber for iden­ti­fy­ing the pho­tog­ra­pher as Fred Bentick of the E Moore and Son group pho­to­graph taken in 1951 at Ip­swich that was pub­lished in the Jan­uary edi­tion.

Thanks also to Mrs Beryl Tricker for iden­ti­fy­ing the lo­ca­tion as the Crick­eters Ho­tel in Crown Street, in Ip­swich.

On page nine of the March 2018 edi­tion, the His­tory of Ad­ver­tis­ing Trust’s piece re­lat­ing to the 1930s ad­ver­tis­ing cam­paign for Hor­licks that guarded against “night star­va­tion” made me smile.

I can re­mem­ber that the pro­mo­tion was still go­ing in the 1960s and was fre­quently ad­ver­tised on Anglia TV. There was al­ways a de­gree on in­nu­endo around “night star­va­tion” and I re­call the work­place ban­ter around this topic on the days I went with my dad to work at his box fac­tory in Low­est­oft. I, of course, as a 13-yearold, was not meant to know what was be­ing spo­ken of.

Great Yar­mouth’s last beach pho­tog­ra­pher Samuel Hol­low­ell, who re­tired in 1965, had a comic head-through painted board that re­ferred to “night star­va­tion”. Since the 1890s ,Yar­mouth’s beach pho­tog­ra­phers had been par­o­dy­ing well-known ad­ver­tis­ing cam­paigns. No­tably the “You dirty boy” cam­paign of Pears Soap that fea­tured a young boy be­ing scrubbed clean by an old woman. You can imag­ine the in­nu­endo and ban­ter that went on while the pho­to­graph was be­ing taken.

More than one Yar­mouth beach pho­tog­ra­pher at var­i­ous times had a “You dirty boy” painted cartoon head-through board and th­ese were still in use in the 1930s.

I at­tach a pho­to­graph of an un­known cou­ple pos­ing for Jimmy Thomp­son on Yar­mouth beach us­ing a “You dirty boy” cartoon.

The Thet­ford and Wat­ton Times and Peo­ple’s Weekly Jour­nal of Satur­day, Septem­ber 12, 1891 in an ar­ti­cle ti­tled ‘Yar­mouth In Au­gust’ de­scribes the an­tics in de­tail of some of Yar­mouth’s beach pho­tog­ra­phers and their cus­tomers. It tells of another Pears Soap cam­paign that was turned into a pho­tog­ra­pher’s pos­ing prop called “He won’t be happy till he gets it” that I be­lieve showed a baby reach­ing to grab a bar of Pears Soap. The ar­ti­cle also men­tions the use of the “You Dirty Boy” cartoon.

I am com­pil­ing a book about Yar­mouth’s pho­tog­ra­phers and if any read­ers have any pho­to­graphs taken by the pho­tog­ra­phers of Yar­mouth beach and is pre­pared to share them with me I would ap­pre­ci­ate hear­ing from them.

The pos­ing props used on Yar­mouth beach by the pho­tog­ra­phers var­ied from headthrough painted car­toons to old mo­tor­cy­cles and from wooden don­keys to old cars. I can be con­tacted at walkiepho­tos@ ya­hoo.

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