Hints for Holidays
26 May - 2 September in our Art Gallery
Find out the origins of the seaside holiday through our new exhibition of stylish and iconic railway posters. You can see how the modern holiday was born, explore the range of entertainments on offer and relive the excitement of your first view of the sea.
Exhibition and museum entry is free.
Funded by The Foundation for Sport and the Arts.
A week at the seaside only became a national institution just over 100 years ago. In the early twentieth century, holidays were suddenly available to the masses rather than just the wealthy. The railways were at the centre of these changes - opening up affordable and easy travel to ordinary people.
The railway companies capitalised by laying on special excursion trains and heavily promoting seaside resorts as the best places for people to spend their newfound leisure time. Leading commercial artists like Abram Games, John Hassall, Tom Purvis, Austin Cooper and Frank Newbould all produced seaside scenes for the railways.
Photos of the exhibition.(JPG, 24Kb) (JPG, 24Kb) (JPG, 21Kb) (JPG, 21Kb) (JPG, 25Kb) (JPG, 30Kb) (JPG, 31Kb) (JPG, 23Kb) (JPG, 24Kb) (JPG, 23Kb) (JPG, 24Kb) (JPG, 27Kb) (JPG, 23Kb) (JPG, 39Kb) (JPG, 24Kb) (JPG, 18Kb) (JPG, 28Kb) (JPG, 54Kb) (JPG, 28Kb) (JPG, 37Kb) (JPG, 33Kb) (JPG, 31Kb) (JPG, 29Kb) (JPG, 22Kb) (JPG, 50Kb) (JPG, 23Kb) (JPG, 25Kb) (JPG, 22Kb) (JPG, 31Kb) (JPG, 24Kb)
A selection of the pictures on display in the exhibition.
- Entrance panels (PDF, 513Kb) - The large introductory panels at the gallery entrance.
- Large print descriptions (PDF, 4Mb) - For the visually impaired.
- Wall labels (PDF, 1Mb) - The actual labels that were on the gallery wall.
See the Wikipedia pages below to find out more about some of the artists in the exhibition. Remember anyone can edit Wikipedia, so if you spot an error or have something to add, don't tell us - go ahead and edit.
For more on our art collection, see the National Railway Museum blog.
- The Art of Advertising: Posters and paintings by Royal Academy artists 1924
- Japan's First Railway: colour woodblock prints from the 1870s
- Fear and Fascination: art from the dawn of the railways
Whatever the weather: selling rail travel in winter
27 October 2012 - 20 January 2013
Our autumn show reveals how railway companies encourage people to travel 'whatever the weather'. From making the most of an Indian summer (or 'the last of the autumn sunshine'?) to taking part in winter sports, the railways have given passengers an inventive variety of reasons to leave the house in the winter months. This exhibition of 20th century posters will also explore how the railway companies battle the seasons to keep the trains running.