LEISURE

CONTEXT

Title: [Reigate Borough Carnival] (1926, 1927)
[Reigate Borough Carnival] (1926, 1927)

There were various forms of entertainment available in the inter-war period with greater emphasis placed on leisure time. Shorter working weeks and improved transportation made a wider array of activities possible.

Women gained an increasingly prominent public presence. The 1920s saw more women entering paid employment, generally secretarial positions. This meant working women had a disposable income that could be spent on clothing, beauty products and on having fun.

The hedonistic ‘Bright Young Things’ were a stereotype of the period but entertainment was not exclusive to either

youth or to the upper class. The histories and characters of local communities were celebrated through pageants and carnivals that were held in villages and towns across the country. These were patriotic in nature and reinforced ideals of Britishness and tradition. They promoted unity in the aftermath of World War I and in the thirties with the looming prospect of another war. They also offered escape from the economic difficulties and anxieties brought by the General Strike of 1926 and the Great Depression (which followed the Wall Street Crash of 1929).

The films in the Screen Archive South East’s collection that relate to this theme include newsreels, tourist board promotional films and amateur footage of family holidays and day trips. This theme focuses on leisure activities and holidays within the UK. For dress and information relating to international travel, please also see the Travel Theme of Screen Search Fashion.