IT was once the home of fun filled family holidays. But the joy and laughter is hard to imagine in these eerie pictures of an abandoned holiday camp.
The former Pontins Holiday Park in Hemsby, Norfolk played host to more than 2400 guests in it’s hey day – but has gone to wrack and ruin since dwindling numbers forced it’s closure in 2008.
These haunting pictures show how the attractions that would have kept holidaymakers entertained season after season now stand dilapidated and overgrown.
The rusting park, empty swimming pool and overgrown karting track now stand as a monument to British holidays past.
The derelict basketballs court and weedy playing fields would once have been alive with the sound of children playing.
The hundreds of empty chalet apartments stand silent, as guests would have last used them seven years ago.
Now the only visitors to the 20-acre site are the wildlife that has moved in and the occasional urban explorer keen to re-visit the sense of forgotten holidays.
The site now seems more like a ghost town than the popular seaside resort it once was.
Pontins Holidays Parks were founded by Fred Pontin in 1946 and enjoyed huge success.
The speciallity brand of half board or self catering chalet holidays promised entertainment for all the family. Soon there were 30 Holiday Parks operating in the UK.
The cult British comedy movie Holiday On the Buses was filmed at the Pontins Holiday Park in Prestatyn.
The camps were well known for their Blue Coat entertainers and a host of British stars started their show business careers in the Pontins show bar including Bobby Davro, Shane Ritchie and Bradley Walsh.
Steps singer Lisa Scott-Lee also started her career as Pontins Blue Coat.
The parks were sold off several times since 1978 with many closing as holidays abroad became more popular now only six remain operational.
The land agents for the Hemsby Holiday Park Northern Trust had hoped the site might be developed for residential use but there were objections from local residents and plans were withdrawn.
More recently they were forced to do it up after locals complained that it had became an eyesore.
It remains on the market for tourism and leisure use.
One local who used to work at the camp at the height of it’s popularity said: ‘It’s hard to imagine this place was always packed with people having happy holidays.
‘What gets me most is the silence because it was always so noisy with kids laughing and screaming and everyone enjoying themselves.
‘The same families would come back year after year because they love it here so much. You wouldn’t believe it to look at it now.
‘Now we joke that it looks more like the set of an apocalypse zombie movie when all the people have disappeared.