Welcome to Seaside Follies
the national resource & archive for pierrot troupes and concert parties.

This website is a national resource for all information relating to pierrot troupes, concert parties and minstrel troupes of the British seaside. It uses the archive, research work and practice of Tony Lidington (AKA Uncle Tacko!) as the principal resource, as well as a range of other archives and collections.

  • Here you can find-out about the history of pierrot troupes, as well as archives of particular troupes, individuals and resorts.
  • There are academic articles, exhibitions, broadcasts and research projects about the subject, giving a wide overview of the developments in seaside entertainments over the last 200 years.
  • There are sections on contemporary community and research projects and in particular ‘The Pierrotters’ – the last fully-professional seaside pierrot troupe which performed continuously from 1983 until 2010.

Dr Tony Lidington has been researching the subject for over 35 years and this is the first time that this material has ever been collated and digitised for open access.


Book The New Follies

The New Follies are a new, professional, acoustic seaside pierrot troupe.
The only professional seaside Pierrot troupe performing in Britain today!

Dr Tony Lidington Graduation

Book an Illustrated Talk

Dr Tony Lidington (Uncle Tacko!) is the country’s leading authority on the history of seaside Pierrot troupes & concert parties. Tony regularly presents illustrated talks and workshops


Book the Exhibition

Currently there are 3 available exhibitions: 1. ‘The History of Seaside Entertainment’ 2. ‘From Agincourt to Afghanistan’ 3. ‘The Seaside Mutoscope’

Happy Valley Entertainers 1924
Happy Valley Entertainers 1924

Archives in use:
Dr. Tony Lidington
Max Tyler
John Pertwee
Michael Rouse
Alan Upton
Clacton & District Local History Society
Llandudno Museum Services
University of Exeter archives, special collections

If you have archives, photos, oral history stories then use this form to contact us; we’d love to hear from you!

Visit the Archives

In the Summer of 2018,  ‘The New Follies’ & the youth group ‘The Jollies’ performed on Llandudno seafront,  Saturday 29th & Sunday 30th September 2018.

Seaside Follies can run a project like this at your seaside resort!

See the photos & read all about it here

Available to book now for the Summer Season!

The Imaginarium, the mighty Dom-Tink!, the Tinglary, Uncle Tacko’s Flea Circus, The Raree Man PeepshowUncle Tacko! & Captain Ginger.
Illustrated Public Talks – Seaside Entertainment, Pantomime, Pre-Cinema, Victorian and Edwardian Entertainments.
Workshops – Puppetry, Street Theatre and Slapstick

Visit prom-prom.com

Facebook Posts

I’m on ‘Who do you think you are?’ tonight at 9pm on BBC 1… showing David Walliams how to play the barrel organ! ... See MoreSee Less
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4 weeks ago

Here are couple of Christmas video treats for you - the new peepshow films! I hope that together they will make fun viewing for you over the Christmas holidays, amongst re-runs of White Christmas, It’s A Wonderful Life and Morecambe & Wise specials. Here is the link to the audience-view of the peepshow, as performed by Spike and I: www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxYqwJpBrk0 (roughly 20 minutes).Here is the link to our TED-style talk about the creation of the piece (many of you feature in it!): youtu.be/4AApmbBYsrs (roughly 12 minutes).These short films are the the product of working on the AHRC-funded programme 'Modern Visuality and Nineteenth-Century Performance', but Covid restrictions meant that we could not perform them live, so we made these films instead. Please do leave us your thoughts & feedback.A peaceful Yuletide to you all...TonyAKA Uncle Tacko!AKA the Raree ManX ... See MoreSee Less
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3 months ago

Here is a link to the worlds and words of some London buskers in 1964 - an amateur-made film, but really rather lovely... plus ca change: www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kDuomfPFkg Y-E-L Uncle! X ... See MoreSee Less
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4 months ago

This Summer, we selected seven lucky young performing trainees from a diverse background and created The Sunshine Follies! Alongside a host of veteran outdoor/seaside performers, they were trained in the art of barking, as well various other essential skills. You may have even seen them on the Teignmouth seafront, at the RAMM amphitheatre or on Exeter Quayside! Watch the video to learn more and see the trainees in action!A massive thanks to Arts Council England and all our funders, the local authorities and arts organisations, the trainees and of course – our audiences. See you next year! ... See MoreSee Less
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