In 1954, British photojournalism magazine Picture Post sent photographer John Chillingworth on assignment to Blackpool.
Chillingworth was to document the thriving tourist location—between the years of 1901 and 1951, the seaside town’s population tripled—at what happened to be the end of its heyday.
Soon after Chillingworth snapped these color shots, Blackpool’s popularity fell. Improved highway infrastructure and affordable flights to warm destinations such as Spain presented vacation goers with more exotic (and attainable) travel destinations than Blackpool, and the northwest England town began to feel it. Fewer crowds meant fewer businesses, and the erstwhile resort town began to shrink in size and acclaim.
As with summer, though, when Blackpool was at its height, nothing else could compare. We look back at Blackpool’s glory days in Chillingworth’s photos:
A young boy takes in all the goodies at the drink stand.
A young woman gets a helping hand while preparing to go for a burro ride.
A sign touts the Grand Final of the Bathing Beauties competition.
A woman poses while she reads a magazine in the sun.
A group of women having a whale of a time during a beach side carriage ride in Blackpool.
A full beachside diner would certainly be a popular 1950s hangout.