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Butlins Beachcomber Bars

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I've been doing the odd bit of research about the Beachcomber Bars that they used to have in the Butlins Holiday camps over here in the UK. These were Tiki bars purpose built for people on vacation with their kids wanting escape for a few hours in the evening.

Anyway, I came across this comment on a website: (Don't read if easily offended!)"Kicking out time at the beachcomber bar usually found another randy piece of rough. And if you were lucky, back to the chalet for a wank".

Charming! LOL!!

Trader Woody


"Back to the chalet for a wank" is going to be my new personal slogan.

Although I can't think of many contexts where it would be relevant at the moment, I'll definitely work on it.

Do you know, I always felt deprived, in a vague sort of way, that my parents never took me to Butlins (we went to the Haven caravan parks, which were much worse). Now I know why. Oh well, back to the chalet...

[ Edited by: theandrewssister on 2002-03-26 10:21 ]

Funnily enough, I'm going to Pontins (Another holiday camp company very similar to Butlins) in a few weeks for All Tommorrows Parties, a music fest curated by the mighty Shellac. Knowing how much my wife gets bored by seeing endless bands, and the very real chance that she'll slope off early to get some sleep, this phrase may well be uttered at some stage!

Trader Woody

The Rockabillies meet at these places right? It’s their vocabulary alright. Can someone tell me if there is something of a follow up to Continental Re-Styling? I liked it in a way…


I have this thing about butlins beachcomber bars, coz they were the first bar i was ever allowed to go into at the tender age of seven and it was my total thrill to discover, in a local edinburgh charity store a BUTLIN'S BEACHCOMBER TIKI MUG, i've heard of people finding plates with a butlins tiki on it or biscut tins but i found a beachcomber mug.
Their were made in staffordshire and by rooting around i found out that the company that made them went bust about 1964 so it has to be pre then.
I'll post a picture of it soon, but finally after feeling that brit-tiki is devoid of homegrown tiki mugs my bit of urban archeology has shown this to be incorrect

Hey that's great news! I had always thought that they would have had Tiki mugs at Butlins, but there's never been any evidence for them. You'll definitely have to post a photo! Does it resemble the fierce looking Tiki which appears on the plates & ashtrays?

I came across an album recently which has a photo on the cover of a Butlins Beachcomber bar, and it clearly shows two large Tiki statues. One of them looking surprisingly like Mr Bali Hai!

Trader Woody

Yes the beachcomber mug dose look like the ones on the plate, when I've got time tomorrow I'll post a pic, (I've been rushed of my feet this week talking my brother out of his anti-malaria medicine induced idea of splitting up with his wife).
this website..
has quite a few pics of the butlins beachcomber bars, I was sad to learn that the beachcomber of my childhood got turned into a sweeny todd theme bar in the nineties, bang goes my idea of a drunkin weekend at butlins in Ayr.
But acording to Bizzare magazine the Minehead butlins beachcomber still exists.

The Butlin's Beachcomber Tiki mug..

[ Edited by: atomictonytiki 2009-01-20 13:17 ]

thought you might like to see a menu cover from the Butlin's Beachcomber Bar...

Cool, the mug is really is like the picture on the Beachcomber plates! It also manages to combine a fierce looking Tiki with the tacky spirit of the British seaside. (Ie. the piped lettering, and mention of where it's from).
Great stuff! Cheers for posting it.

Trader Woody

I like how the mug's existence is clearly explained on the side opposite the face:

"Butlins Beachcomber Souvenir."

I never could have guessed that it was a souvenir!

[ Edited by: Tiki Chris on 2002-05-28 01:59 ]

its probably so you can tell the difrence between it and the ones in the bar that said "property of butlins holiday camp not to be removed from the Beachcomber bar on pain of enforced participation of knobbly knee's contest":)

That menu looks a lot like the work that Michael Cassidy is doing today. Have you seen this shirt? I've got the short sleeved version in purple. It's my favorite aloha shirt.


Yup thats butlins alright horrific brits in a fantasy background, see the youngster with his parents, his proper jacket and shirt but a lovely pair of jeans on, and his mother is she knitting or more likely reading the menu and gasping at the prices of drinks. while the dad is saying something like "if i wanted to drink forgein muck we would have gone to toramalenos".

Wahoo! Just got hold of the Butlins Tiki mug!!!

It was always the holy grail of UK Tiki collecting.....something which may not have even existed.....until AtomicTonyTiki found one!

I actually got hold of it via boring old eBay. A Butlins freak with a sniping program came close to grabbing it with 10 seconds to go, but I beat the swine into submission with a brutal final bid. (Actually, it wasn't all that expensive).

Wahoo! again,

Trader Woody


Good for you! I have seen that mug and never knew where the blazes that place existed! I thought it was some type of camp, with that hatchet handle and all.

Congrats on a good find. I will have to seek on for meself now, given its paramount position in British Tiki and my affection of the UK.

BTW, still think "Brit-Tiki" is the way to go for your group's name. I am biased though.


That's great, Woody! We've all learned from previous posts how much this mug means to you - great snipe-dodging!


You are right in thinking Butlins is a camp, but probably not the type you are used to in the US. They were low-priced resorts for families to escape to within the UK, with the emphisis on being cheap & cheerful. Billy Butlin had a talent for finding interesting ideas from abroad, and actually brought the first Chinese takeaway in the UK to his camps!

Looking at some of the old photos
it's baffling that people actually enjoyed going to them, but they still exist & change with the times, so they must be doing something right.

I too think that 'Brit-Tiki' is a great title....I'd used it for one of my older posts! Lol! Great minds think alike!

Anyway, I'll keep an eye out for another Butlins Mug for you. We've managed 2 in as many months, and there must be more out there....

Trader Woody

[ Edited by: Trader Woody on 2002-07-24 15:10 ]

2 butlins tiki mugs in a month, the mugs must be reaching some form of apex of bad taste in the owners minds and there setting them free.
the beachcomber mug is the coolest the real hadpainting on the face but isn't it the smallest mug, definatly made for a tiny cocktail.

"Wahoo! Just got hold of the Butlins Tiki mug!!!"

What does the mug look like? Is it similar to the one in this auction?


Very similar, except with a little handle shaped like an axe. It's not particularly large, as AtomicTonyTiki points out, and is more coffee-cup shaped than the usual Tiki Mug. It is properly shaped & hand painted.

There's a photo further up the thread.

Trader Woody

Mug shmug, but what about that insane PLATE !!?

...that must be the holy grail of all Butlins collectors, too.

Aw, I've already got one of them!
They are more suitable for tabs & fags (cigarettes) than egg & chips, being about 4 or 5 inches across. It was after finding one of these in a small antique shop in Bath that I first thought, 'What if they made a matching mug?'. And the rest is history, played out in this very thread!!

Trader Woody

the holy grail of all Butlins collectors would be finding that one of the camps has an intact beachcomber bar, failing that one of the big fiberglass tikis from the bar.

As I recently purchased this menu, I thought I'd post a couple of pictures to this ancient thread. Then I saw the other pictures of stuff are gone... so here's my entire Butlins collection to refresh it! My dish does not say 'Beachcomber Bar Souvenir' only 'Beachcomber Bar'. A liberated dish rather than purchased? My mug is a souvenir mug according to the reverse and now I've seen the drinks menu I'm wondering if it was used for the Cona (sic) coffee?

The menu is oversize A4 and I only have an A4 scanner... so there's gaps in the images :( sorry.



Had many a fun night in the Beachcomber bar at Bultins Minehead, in the days before I knew what a wank was!!! LOL

... I can remember clearly the flowing water and the thunder storm effects ever half an hour or so!

Like those mugs... nice finds!

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