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Norman Bunny Brooks

In loving Memory of Norman Bunny Brooks

The story of Norman "Bunny" Brooks is extremely important to the Butlin's timeline. It was the story of a new holiday camp opening at Ingoldmells Skegness, part of Butlin's, an idea of inspiration and a different way for people to have a break. Mr Brooks applied for the job and joined the team at the first and oldest Butlin's Camp in 1935. Working with his colleagues, Mr Brooks would help to prepare the camp to William (Billy) Butlin's standards. With much work to do, the camp developed into a masterpiece and Bunny Brooks was one of the people who helped in this development.

In 1936, Billy Butlin would be inspecting the area and preparing to open his first holiday camp. Then came the moment when Mr Brooks would be one of many at the camp to see the gates open as Butlin's for the first time. Campers would walk in to see the new holiday camp as they were greeted by the staff who had helped get the camp ready. The Butlin's magic had just begun as Mr Brooks welcomed all the new campers to a place that would become an inspiration to so many.

Norman Bunny Brooks

The camp was open and all was going to plan as the team worked with Billy Butlin to show why Butlin's is the best place to take that all-important break. As night fell, entertainment was the next task for the team. When Billy Butlin noticed that his campers did not look like they were enjoying themselves, he asked Norman Bradford to help out. It was a complete success and the birth of the Redcoats went down in Butlins history.

Billy was so pleased with the idea of the Redcoats that he asked for a much larger team. Mr Brooks immediately joined the team as he loves to entertain others just to see that smile. Bunny Brooks was one of the very first people to wear the Redcoat uniform when he helped entertain the campers who came to Butlin's Skegness.Bunny loved every moment of giving another person the chance to smile, day or night. The Butlin's magic was truly strong with Mr Brooks as he helped to create this memory.

Norman Bunny Brooks

The Butlin's Holiday camp was doing extremely well as the team of Redcoats would be representing Butlin's to a high standard. Behind the scenes was another important person that was also contributing very hard towards the Butlin's magic. These are the people who are doing maintenance, chalet cleaning, bar staff, and of course, those in the catering department.

In this photo, you can see Mr Brook's father, Isaac Brooks (in the white coat), working as a part of the team that was contributing towards the memory creation for so many campers. The hard work in the background that many did not see was in good hands. The catering department was responsible for all the campers on the site as there were no self-catering options in the early days of Butlin's. This means that the gentleman shown in this photo had to prepare meals...three times a day for all the campers.

The Butlin's experience had come with breakfast, lunch, and dinner, giving Isaac Brooks and his team a large task to do. With his son working hard in entertaining the campers, Isaac was hard working behind the scenes to feed the campers on time and with quality food. It's a team that was perfectly matched to help deliver the Butlin's magic to all.

Norman Bunny Brooks

Bunny Brooks continued his career at Butlin's Skegness, working his way up to stage manager. With Butlin's Skegness in good hands, Billy Butlin would leave to help the Warner's with their new venture. Working alongside the Warner's, he would help develop and open Dovercourt Bay with great pride. With the new Warner's camp now open to all, Billy Butlin would travel to Clacton to begin the next stage in the Butlin's timeline.

Billy Butlin would buy land to the west of Clacton and apply to the local council for permission to build his second camp. The plans were opposed by many who felt the idea would reduce the value of their properties and take away trade from others. However, Billy had those who supported the idea and knew it was a case of convincing the other half. Being a problem solver, Billy Butlin invited the councillors to his camp in Skegness to see the benefits the camps brought to the local area.

Norman Bunny Brooks

Mr Brooks and his father would have been among the staff who had helped with this very important part of the Butlin timeline. Clacton Councillors had come to see the benefits of employment to the local area as Billy Butlin explained how the camp would use local produce for the camp, local traders to service the camp and the increase in tourism to the town of Skegness. With the help of all the staff, including Mr Brooks, the plan was a complete success as permission was granted. This is an extremely important moment in Butlins' history.

To continue to entertain campers at Butlin's Skegness, Mr Brooks would be invited to the new Butlin's Clacton camp. Bunny made his way to the camp to see it all new as he looked around at the birth of the second oldest camp. Helping where he could, the day would come when Mr Brooks would witness the opening of another Butlin's camp for the second time. In 1938 he would be one of many staff members to see the gates open to welcome the new campers and some from Skegness to Butlin's Clacton.

Norman Bunny Brooks

Working to entertain guests, Bunny Brooks would continue to add to the magic of Butlin's and represent the name extremely well. Mr Brooks continued to work at Butlin's Clacton until it closed to help and support the Second World War. When the war ended, Mr Brooks joined the entertainment staff at a holiday camp in Prestatyn, North Wales.

In 1962 he and his wife Alice bought a guesthouse in Blackpool, but when the opportunity arose to entertain at a camp, he took the plunge. In the 1970s, Mr Brooks was offered the opportunity to run a holiday camp in Somerset at St Audrie's Bay. He took up the offer and organised the entertainment, taking guests on walks and to the Quantock Hills, teaching swimming and continuing the entertainment on stage, including competitions. Mr Brooks would return home for the winter and then return to what he loved in the summer.

During the off season, Mr and Mrs Brooks would love to take their breaks at Butlins Hotels in Brighton.

Sadly, Norman Bunny Brooks passed away in 1974 at the age of 62.

Norman Bunny Brooks
Bunny Brooks Story

Mr and Mrs Brooks wedding

Mr and Mrs Brook's wedding day was at St Marys RC Church in Alnwick Northumberland
18th September 1943

Norman Bunny Brooks

Norman Bunny Brooks

Norman Bunny Brooks
Butlin's Brighton Hotel

Norman Bunny Brooks
Butlin's Brighton Hotel

Found in Gillian's Butlin's viewer is this smashing photo of Mr Brooks sitting down with a Redcoat.

Norman Bunny Brooks
Butlin's Brighton Hotel

Fancy dress. He is on the right.
Paper mache outfits and he won!

Norman Bunny Brooks
Butlin's Brighton Hotel

Mr Brook's son is on the left, and Alice (Mrs Brooks) is on the far right in the red dress.

Norman Bunny Brooks

Bab's Memories

In 2022, Babs received a message from Gillian in our social media group. In the message were photos of a moment when Babs had met the family during her time as a Redcoat. Excited, Babs struck up a conversation with Gillian and they have been friends ever since. The magic of Butlin's had worked again. Babs had this to say about Mr Brooks as she told the story of an amazing man;

I hope you have enjoyed this story as much as I have enjoyed telling it. I have concluded that Bunny never stopped being a Redcoat and I love the fact that even after the war Sir Billy kept in touch with him. It just shows how much he was thought of.

Bunny Brooks Son Memories

As you can see, Dad joined Butlins in 1935, prior to the opening of Skegness, and was also at Clacton when it opened. His father Isaac also worked in catering at Skegness and the whole family lived in Ingoldmells for a while.

To give you an idea of the man, and here's your starter for ten, on our trip to Brighton when the photo was taken. He used to volunteer to sing a few songs with the organist in the bar, mixing up the songs so they were different every night.

Our dad was a wonderful man, a great father and a consummate professional entertainer who would take centre stage at any fathering and most of my memories are of his time at Prestatyn Holiday Cam after the Second World War. But he often reminisced about his time at Butlin's and every Christmas he would send Billy Bulin a Christmas card and always get one back.

Permission has been given by Gillian to Mark and Butlins Memorabilia website to show his wonderful Butlin's story. All stories and photos shown on this site do not belong to me and belong to those who have shared them with me. Please do not ask for their details as I will not share anything with you as I don't hold their details and it is not my place to give them away if I did.

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Who and What is Butlin's Memorabilia Website

Mark Banks is the individual responsible for the creation and ownership of this website, which displays his collection of Butlin's memorabilia. It was created in my spare time after work as a hobby and has since grown into a site that gives others a chance to smile. It is important to note that this website is not associated with Butlin's and is not an official archive of the company. Furthermore, it includes stories, with the consent of the individuals involved, that recount memorable moments at Butlin's from both customers and former staff members. This website pays homage to the esteemed company and its founder, Sir William Butlin. Additionally, it provides information on the history of Butlin's, based on personal research.

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This website is a fan site dedicated to celebrating the Butlins brand. It is created and maintained by Mark Banks. Further information about the website and answers to any questions can be found below. In case of any additional inquiries, please feel free to contact Mark.

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The Untold Stories of Butlin's

The website now includes a section called 'Untold Stories of Butlin's', featuring personal anecdotes shared by members of my group. The website now includes a section called 'Untold Stories of Butlin's', featuring personal experiences shared by members of my group. Members of the group have graciously shared their personal experiences at Butlin's and added these stories to the website. These stories are not affiliated with the official company but rather represent the memories of the individuals who shared them.
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Please note that Butlin's Memorabilia is an independent website and is not affiliated with the official Butlins website or archive. The owners of Butlin's and have not been involved in the development of this site, nor have they approached me to design it. However, I am grateful for their willingness to allow me to continue to share the rich history of their company with you.

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