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Solway Plain - past and present

Silloth on Postcards

From around 1900, the passing scene in the town was captured perfectly by the postcards sent home by its visitors.

Silloth Baths, around 1900

The baths was one of the first buildings to go up in the new town around 1856. Water was pumped from the sea by a steam engine. Wood's guide of 1870 said: "the building has every accommodation for invalids taking baths which can be had at any time. Mr and Mrs Studholme, the managers, pay every attention to those requiring them. This is a list of the baths that can be had:- Hot, cold, shower, swimming and plunge bath".
The building continued to operate as a bath house until 1920. In the '30s it was converted into a tearoom. After this, it became what is still the town's most popular all-weather attraction - The Amusements. The card on below shows them in "full swing" during the 1950s.

Silloth Amusement Arcade, 1950s

Silloth, Criffel Street about 1900

Criffel Street, Silloth's fine sea front promenade, has always been the heart of the town. This view, from around 1900, shows the Solway (Golf) Hotel on the right and, further along, Sim's grocers and the Balmoral Hotel with Wood's Emporium on the opposite corner of Wampool Street.

Silloth Convalsecent Home, about 1900

The Convalescent Home, near West Beach opened in 1856 and had its own platform to receive patients directly from ambulance trains. The colour card is postmarked 1905; we don't know the date of the unused monochrome card below

.Silloth Convalescent Home Interior

Silloth Tennis Courts, early 1900s Silloth Putting Green 
Silloth has always provided excellent sports facilities. The tennis courts and the putting green were popular but the main attraction was the town's fine golf course.
Silloth Golf Course, first tee 1920s
These two postcards of the first tee both date from the 1920s.

In the smaller picture, the children sitting on the left are waiting to be hired as caddies.

The club has produced many fine golfers, notably Cecil Leitch who won three British Ladies Championships between 1914 and 1921. 
Silloth Golf Course

Silloth Pierrots, three old postcards

From Victorian times the main entertainment for the summer season was provided by The Pierrots concert party who performed in an area of the green known as 'Happy Valley' they were always a popular subject for postcards! Several different troops of performers appeared over the years, the best known were Dave Fuller and his Merry Men and Maids who entertained the crowds between 1900 and 1930.

Dave Fuller Pierrots

A few more views from our album

Silloth Pier Station Road and Eden Street
A stroll along the pier; this card is postmarked 1923 The junction of Eden Street and Station Road in the very early 1900s.
Bathing Huts Ponies on West Beach
The bathing huts allowed ladies to change with complete decorum! About 1900. Pony-trekking became popular in the 1960s.
Tommy Legs Silloth green with paddling pool
The 'Tommy Legs' light is situated just off West Beach. The paddling pool was a popular place with the kiddies in the 1950s and '60s.

. . . and finally

Donkeys on Silloth Green
Everybody's favourite - Mr Gray with his donkeys on the green.

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