Gems of the Museum of British Surfing

February 9, 2012 | Surfing
Museum of British Surfing: we want to ride the 1929 finless surfboard

The Museum of British Surfing is a place where you could easily live in. More than a classic space where old things are appreciated, here you'll probably ask curators if you could take all surf memorabilia to the water again.

It's easy to feel that you really want to ride a 1930's finless surfboard. There are so many interesting surf items and pictures from the past in the Museum of British Surfing that you will certainly hit the surf after visiting it.

Fortunately, the museum has been receiving incredible donations from old attics. There are surf treasures of all kind. David Yeo bought his first leash, in 1970-71, with a rubber sucker that would be applied to the nose of the surfboard.

Bude and Braunton holiday guides feature surf ladies promoting their sunny beaches in retro classic layouts, from the 1960's.

Surf toys are catchy. There's a 1966 Corgi Mini Countryman, donated by Peter Robinson, which offers two small red surfboards on top that could easily be heading to the "National Surf-Board Riding Championships", scheduled to July 1968, at Bude.

Old school surf posters are everywhere and in a very good condition. "The Art of Surf Riding" is a splendid piece of surf history. It was written by Ronald S. Funnell, in 1934, and reprinted in 1953.

The surf book explains how to surf, how to ride waves and have fun, along with useful tips and even basic beach safety rules. Funnell was also one of the first shapers in Britain and produced several wooden models.

The gems of British surfing include a fabulous "Circle One" steamer of 1979 from Jeff Townsley’s Exeter surf company and a 1928 photograph of Australian surfing and swimming champion Charles Justin McAllister holding a surfboard, when he visited and taught surfing in several English seaside resorts.

The Museum of British Surfing is always adding new donations to the surf collection and will open to the public, in April 2012, in Braunton.