It was the big new 70s attraction at Seaton Carew. Remember it?
Most people love a good fairground and Seaton Carew added to its line-up of attractions in 1972.
That was the year when the Astroslide became the latest addition to the seafront.
Who remembers it? The Hartlepool Mail reporter at the time said: “The exotically named Astroslide is the 1972 version of the helter skelter and a more mature version of the slide in the children’s playground.
“The idea is for children to slide down the waxed fibreglass ‘shute’ which has several bumps to add to the excitement of the downward plunge.
“Fortunately, a large mat at the bottom breaks the fall.”
It was quite the year for change at Seaton with new versions of one-arm bandits making their first appearance. Amusement arcade owners were stepping up their own offerings “to provide a great attraction in the event of rain”.
But it was not all about bringing in new attractions.
There were some returning favourites as well, such as the Seaton Carew Jazz Band Festival.
It had been so popular in 1971 that lots of the North East’s top bands had taken part and some even had to be turned away because there was so much interest.
“This year, a similar response is expected,” the Mail added.
Colourful street decorations had been put up by Hartlepool Corporation and officials were expecting the resort to look spectacular for the jazz band festival.
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There was talk of a possible torchlight procession happening in Seaton Carew that year. Who remembers if it took place?
But one thing which definitely did happen was Hartlepool Corporation making their own mark on the summer’s proceedings.
They chipped in with attractive flower beds and a landscaped embankment in Corporation Drive ’to mask the north steelworks’.
The Mail report at the time added: “It seems that Seaton is determined to have a successful summer, but as with all the resorts on this stretch of coast, one eye will always be on the summer.”
The tourist season certainly got off to a strong start that year. Weather over the Easter period wasn’t the best but Hartlepool people ‘headed out in force in search of fun and sun,” said the Mail.
The sun aspect of it all didn’t materialise. Instead, holidaymakers had to put up with rain and ‘blustery winds’.
But that didn’t stop the revellers who headed for the amusement arcades instead.
Some hardy souls had a go at camping or headed for the playground.
And the other big draw for people was the coach tour. Bee-Line reported that everyone of its 60 coaches had been filled for days away, especially for places such as Whitby. And United buses were packing out as well.
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