Island’s Sunshine camp was perfect for holiday romance

Catering staff at the Sunshine Holiday Camp, Hayling Island, in 1960
Catering staff at the Sunshine Holiday Camp, Hayling Island, in 1960

Found: Old Portsmouth pub landlords

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Who says holiday romances are a flash in the pan?

This is a picture of the catering staff at the Sunshine Holiday Camp, Hayling Island, in 1960.

It comes from John Porter, of Windsor Road, Waterlooville, a trawlerman based in Grimsby who had returned to Leigh Park on leave to stay with his parents.

His mum Daisy (front row, second right) worked at the camp and John recalls: ‘She asked me to go over and look around the camp.

‘I did and I met the lovely Rita who worked there with her sister and mum and dad.’

Rita is second from the left in the front row. John says most of the women were from the Portsmouth area, but the majority of men came from all over the country.

Some names he recalls from among these staff were: Lyn, Rosie, June, May, Connie, Joyce, Gus and catering manager Alf Guffick.

The resident ballroom band was the Bob Potter Band, who went on to open the Lakeside Club at Frimley.

John adds: ‘The jazz band that stood in for an hour each night had no electronic gadgets or microphones. Kenny Ball and his Jazzmen didn’t need them.’

And the ‘lovely’ Rita?

‘We’ve been married for 46 years. Have two sons and six grandchildren.’