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Leisure, early to mid 20th century

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Below are links to groups of pages on particular aspects of leisure in the early-mid 1900s. Click an image to go to its group.


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Victorian and Edwardian children at play

In the early 20th century children amused themselves as there was no internet, or money for expensive toys.

See the link from the image for more.

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Games for parties and families

Before electronic games one way that families amused themselves indoors was with family games and party games.

See the link from the image for old-style games for parties and get-togethers.

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Children's toys in the early to mid 20th century

By the 1930s people were becoming more affluent so children of wartime Britain had to make do with their cast-offs.

See the link from the image for more about children's toys.

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Lending libraries before computer­isation

There were good public libraries, so people read a lot. There was no personalised electronic equipment to take their time.

See the link from the image for more about lending libraries.

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Cinemas in their heyday

The early to mid 20th century was the hay-day for cinemas. In the towns there were several within easy reach. See the link from the image for more about the excitement of the cinema.

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Listening for pleasure in the past

There was sound recording from the early 20th century. It tended to be a family or group activity around a single piece of equipment. See the link from the image for more about listening for pleasure.

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The early days of television

Televisions started coming in to the better off homes in the 1950s, but as they were unreliable, most families rented rather than bought. See the link from the image for more.

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Smoking when it was common-place

It was not until the mid-20th century that smoking began to be considered as dangerous. Many people continued to do it anyway. See the link from the image for more about tobacco smoking.

For more types of leisure use the search box.

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