A National Trust commissioned YouGov survey shows a 20% decline in people visiting the coast since 2005 and that over half the nation hasn’t had a single day trip to the coast in the last year. Apparently only one in seven of people aged 18-24 year felt that their happiest childhood memory is being by the sea, which is half the national average.
When I was a child all my holidays were to the coast but over time that changed. When I took the aged parents on holiday at first Dad was surprised that we might go somewhere nowhere near the coast but overtime it never bothered him.
Am I surprised? To be honest no not really.
When my parents got married cars were rarer and most people went to a holiday resort and stopped there. The resort had all the attractions..... there would be a pier with amusements and the pier would put on a show. My parents would always go to see "the show". There would be amusement arcades, a putting green, crazy golf and a bowling green. A band may have played of an afternoon.
Of course since then foreign travel has been come easier and cheaper and lets be honest the sun is warmer and it rains less.
We have cars so we don't need resorts you can stay anywhere and have day trips. I seldom stay near the coast..... if I'm in the UK I'll find somewhere in the country in a small village.
Now I have been to the coast this year, but for more than a day? unlikely. The resorts have greatly faded and no longer have the charm they once had. It's not to say you can't have a good time but few will go to a resort and spend a week there, so the resorts no longer get the income they once have. As I've mentioned before the holiday camps that attracted millions are virtually no more.
One of my aunts would go to the coast and spend the week on the beach whatever the weather! People like her still exist but why sit on a windy wet east coast beach when you can go to the Costa Del Spain or a Greek island where the the sun is guaranteed and the drink cheap! And it is often cheaper to fly abroad than it is to holiday in the UK!!
People do go to the coast in numbers but is it enjoyable when you are stuck in traffic jams and it takes ages to get there? I wonder....
Curiously although the holiday resorts are faded they do have a certain charm for the photographer! There is some fascinating victorian and 20's/30's architecture...
I think the disconnect is less to with the coast than with nature as a whole. And I wonder if the simple pleasures I enjoyed as a child would be enjoyed in todays high tech world...