English Language paper 2 helpWatch
SOURCE A - 21st Century non-fiction
This is an extract from an article about childhood holidays, published in 2009 in The Independent. Here, the artist Tracey Emin describes spending summers in her hometown of Margate, a popular seaside town, as a child.
REMEMBER WHEN: ENDURING MEMORIES OF CHILDHOOD HOLIDAYS by Tracey Emin
When I was a child Margate was known as the Golden Mile, a gorgeous stretch of soft sand, neon lights and ice-cream parlours – all the stuff that can turn a hot day into something absolutely incredible. Growing up by the seaside was a magical experience, especially back then, when the great British seaside was in its heyday. My strongest childhood memories of all undoubtedly come from summer days spent at the Lido1. Almost every second, from when it opened in May until it closed in September, that was where I could be found. At that time, in the 1970s, Margate's Lido complex had hardly been changed since Victorian times. It had the most amazingly beautiful 1920s style arch at the front with a fantastic salt-water pool; it was a safe and healthy environment for kids; somewhere we could go off on our own and play for hours with friends.
10 Every morning, my twin and I, and a gang of friends, would all meet up at the Lido, no later than 10am when the doors were opened, and would stay there until it was locked up at 6pm. There was never a chance of getting bored. Every day there would be beauty competitions and talent shows, and often in the afternoon Tony Savage would play at the organ and old people would gather around and sing along to old war songs; there were hamburgers, and afternoon tea dances on the 15terrace. One of my favourite things about the Lido was the really high diving boards; imagine how exhilarating it felt at the age of 11, jumping off a 20-foot drop. I'd do it again and again and again. The whole of Margate at that time was alive and spirited, rather a special place to be. On a Saturday or Sunday, you couldn't find a spot to sit on. From Clifton Villas past the Lido and down to Dreamland and the old-fashioned fun fair, thousands of bodies would gather on the sand. One thing 20 I always noticed was how different the people would be during each season; the OAPs would arrive in April, and in June it would be families coming for their summer holidays.
There was always something to do in Margate. There was crazy golf and the Jamaica Inn, a big puppet theatre, and a big building with a fibreglass devil at the entrance and Caves nightclub underneath. I remember seeing the comedian Norman Wisdom perform on my tenth birthday – it 25 was just one of those places where stuff always happened. If nothing else, I'd go down to the hotel where my mum worked and have a swim with my brother.
My mum still lives in the town, and every time I visit I'm deeply saddened by what's happened: the once infamous neon seafront has now gone and the beautiful old wooden railway structure has been burnt to cinders. There is little sign of what was once a thriving town at the heart of the British 30 tourist industry. There are still beautiful beaches around that area and the wonderful Margate winter gardens are still thriving, but the glorious place of my childhood has largely been left to rot.
GLOSSARY 1 Lido - an outdoor swimming pool.
SOURCE B - 19th Century non-fiction
Charles Dickens is writing in 1851 about his favourite seaside holiday resort, Broadstairs, in East- Kent. Dickens visited this place every year since 1837 and referred to it affectionately as his ‘English Watering Place’.
OUR WATERING PLACE
In the Autumn-time of the year, when the great metropolis1 is so much hotter, so much noisier, so much more dusty or so much more water-carted, so much more crowded, so much more disturbing and distracting in all respects, than it usually is, a quiet sea-beach becomes indeed a blessed spot. Half awake and half asleep, this idle morning in our sunny window on the edge of a chalk-cliff in the 5 old-fashioned watering-place to which we are a faithful resorter, we feel a lazy inclination to sketch its picture.
The place seems to respond. Sky, sea, beach, and village, lie as still before us as if they were sitting for the picture. It is dead low-water. A ripple plays among the ripening corn upon the cliff, as if it were faintly trying from recollection to imitate the sea; and the world of butterflies hovering over 10the crop of radish-seed are as restless in their little way as the gulls are in their larger manner when the wind blows. But the ocean lies winking in the sunlight like a drowsy lion - its glassy waters scarcely curve upon the shore - the fishing-boats in the tiny harbour are all stranded in the mud - our two colliers2 have not an inch of water within a quarter of a mile of them, and turn, exhausted, on their sides, like faint fish. Rusty cables and chains, ropes and rings, undermost parts of posts and 15piles and confused timber-defences against the waves, lie strewn about, in a brown litter of tangled sea-weed and fallen cliff which looks as if a family of giants had been making tea here for ages, and had observed an untidy custom of throwing their tea-leaves on the shore.
In truth, our watering-place itself has been left somewhat high and dry by the tide of years. Concerned as we are for its honour, we must reluctantly admit that the time when this pretty little 20 semi circular sweep of houses, tapering off at the end of the wooden pier into a point in the sea, was a gay place, and when the lighthouse overlooking it shone at daybreak on company dispersing from public balls, is but dimly traditional now. There is a bleak chamber in our watering-place which is yet called the Assembly 'Rooms,' and understood to be available on hire for balls or concerts. Some few seasons since, an ancient little gentleman came down and stayed at the hotel, who said that he had 25 danced there, in bygone ages, with the Honourable Miss Peepy, well known to have been the Beauty of her day and the cruel occasion of innumerable duels. But he was so old and shrivelled, and so very rheumatic in the legs, that it demanded more imagination than our watering- place can usually muster, to believe him. Therefore, except the Master of the 'Rooms' (who to this hour wears kneebreeches, and who confirmed the statement with tears in his eyes), nobody did believe in the little lame old gentleman, or even in the Honourable Miss Peepy, long deceased.
GLOSSARY 1 Metropolis - a capital city e.g. London. 2 colliers - a ship that transports coal
Question 4: For this question, you need to refer to the whole of source A together with the whole of source B.
Compare how the writers have conveyed their different views and experiences of the seaside. In your answer, you could:
• compare their different views and experiences
• compare the methods they use to convey those views and experiences
• support your ideas with quotations from both texts [16 marks]