The Educational Origins of Tourism
** You will also find a page with brief biographies of educational tourism leaders by clicking here, then scrolling down the Blog page accessed**
[This paper is an edited extract of a discussion Paper available from the Tourism, Hospitality and Events School, Leeds Metropolitan University].
Please note: the Bibliography is in a separate file found towards the end of the list in the left-hand panel.
Tourism was used at key points in British history to educate people. It is possible to argue that it was filling an educational role most of the time, at least in its early stages. Virtually all forms of tourism began for educational reasons. Most currently available work underplays this fact, with the possible exception of discussions on the Grand Tour. Holloway (1989, p179) makes a statement about "tourists and locals alike widening their horizons" almost as an afterthought to a short discussion of sociocultural problems. Cooper et al refer to myths surrounding tourism which "should be broken", pointing out "Tourism is not purely for the purposes of leisure. It also includes business tourism, pilgrimages and tourism for health purposes" (Cooper et al, 1993, p1). A later chapter on "The Future of Tourism" makes only passing mention to `new' tourists looking for "rewarding activities to fill their leisure time and to satisfy their cultural, intellectual and sporting interests", but it is only in the context of the needs of certain market segments in "multi-interest travel". (p268). Voase (1995) in an interesting and useful book touches on many aspects of tourism which relate to education, without dealing with it as a perspective. A chapter about the future discusses economics, global warming, people in tourism, sustainability, transport and fashions, but not tourism as an educative activity.
Ryan's The Chase of a Dream, the End of a Play (in Ryan, 1997, p23) refers to tourism as an educative process within the context of sociological discussion. The historical references consider tourism largely as leisure and escapism. Hollinshead's Heritage Tourism Under Post-modernity: Truth and the Past in the same collection as Ryan (1997), shows how great a gap there is between the sociological critic on the one hand and the teacher of history on the other, as the scholarship of Samuel's Theatres of Memory (1994) illustrates. Hollinshead paints a pessimistic picture of a world in which all history teaching outside the classroom or library appears impossible since it long ago succumbed to a conspiracy by various forces of darkness. There is little illumination in this kind of writing for the history teacher working out of the classroom. History teachers know well that all interpretations - including books and academic papers - of the world take particular viewpoints, selecting, interpreting and presenting reality as they see it. Even so, a re-assessment of tourism which hopes to be accepted at a higher academic level will have to establish a credible, theoretical and practical counter-argument to the Hollinshead kind of view.
Weiler and Hall edited a collection of papers in Special Interest Tourism (1992) which look at a number of case studies and review some sectors. They point to the "diversity of market segments and products ... encompassed within the rubric of `special interest tourism'" and "the limited amount of research that has been done" (p199). The book unfortunately suffers from being more a collection of snapshots of relevant areas, but the opening chapter does attempt an overview. Sadly, it remains only a collection of separate perspectives such as marketing, ethics and green tourism, rather than shining a well-focused new light on the whole issue.
Within the book, the paper on Educational Travel (Kalinowski and Weiler in Weiler and Hall, 1992, pp15/16) is particularly disappointing in its attempt to take a historical perspective. It makes only two references, the first to the Grand Tour as the originator of educational travel and second to Chautauqua. "The modem-day learning vacation concept seems to have originated at Chautauqua, a residential institution in New York. Initiated in 1874 by a Methodist minister and an Ohio businessman, Chautauqua blends the concept of an outdoor recreation setting with social activities and learning opportunities" (Kalinowski and Weiler, 1992). This American example is interesting and important as it led to some 12,000 similar centres within the United States, but they were largely centres where general educational activities took place, rather than centres where people discovered their (temporary) new environments through first-hand contact. As a perspective on educational tourism it is disappointing. Another look must be taken at the history of tourism forms.
The pilgrimage was an early form of informal education as it brought devotees closer to knowledge of sacred sites and introduced them to new experiences and knowledge, but not in any didactic way. Prehistoric pilgrimages took place to centres associated with magical properties and religious beliefs, and specifically Christian pilgrimages were undertaken at least from the late fourth century AD. Around 610 AD pilgrims could buy a guide to the churches of Rome - an early aid to visitor interpretation (Feifer, 1985). The Canterbury Pilgrims, following a well-used route from Winchester or London to Canterbury Cathedral relied on a growing infrastructure of tracks, inns and stables in order to make their journey. In Poland, the monastery of Jasna Gora in Czestochowa, founded in 1382, received thousands of pilgrims each year to see an image of the Blessed Virgin Mary housed there: by 1682 it was around 140,000, and by the present day it sometimes welcomes a million in a single year. Historically, each visit was part of a process of communication and teaching in which what the pilgrims had seen and experienced was fed back to others in their own villages and towns (Jablonski, 1996.
The nature of the Grand Tour as an education for the sons of the English gentry has been well covered (Pimlott 1947, Hibbert 1969, Brodsky-Porges 1981, Hugill 1985, Towner 1985, Feifer 1985, and Adler 1989). Rooted in the explorations of Queen Elizabeth I's age, the Grand Tour was encouraged by her as a means of training men for government. Feifer (1985, p64) quotes James Howell's Instructions for Forraine Travel (1642) comparing the stay-at-home with the traveller. "To run over and traverse the world by hearsay ... other men's eyes ... is but a confused and imperfect kind of speculation, which leaveth but weak and distrustful notions" said Howell of the former, and praised the first-hand view of the latter: "the eye ... as through a clear and crystal casement we ... in one instant comprehend half the whole universe".
Though the later Grand Tourists were more interested in pleasure than in being educated, the whole experience remained educational in the widest of senses. Even time spent in a brothel would teach the young buck about life. The part played by Grand Touring in British culture is well documented, but there was an important influence on industry and technology, too (see Armytage, 1961 p 96 on the influence of the Canal du Midi on the British Industrial Revolution, and Klingender, 1972, pp 85-86 on de Loutherbourg and dramatic presentation.
Thomas Cook's entry into the history of travelling was made by a desire to educate. The 1841 railway excursion from Leicester to Loughborough took five hundred people to an open space where Cook, a Baptist preacher, could educate them about the evils that he saw in alcohol. However successful he might have been in his chosen aim, he was certainly successful in his method. With a combination of the excitement of open-wagon rail travel, the leisurely nature of the day, and the ambience of a different environment, the Leicester folk must have been in a receptive and tolerant mood. No consumer motivator could ask for more. Thomas Cook's contributions were all about packaging travel, an attention to detail, and the providing of quality experiences, but above all the enjoyment by his customers of discovering new places.
The growth of seaside holidays is also well documented (Walvin 1978, Parry 1983, Stafford and Yates 1985, Ward and Hardy 1985, Jordan and Jordan 1991, Shaw and Williams 1997). From them it can be seen that even the hedonism of the seaside existed alongside the wonders of discovery. In 1788 Catherine Hutton from Birmingham wrote home about the people she encountered in Blackpool: "The Boltoners are sincere, good humoured and noisy. The Manchestrians reserved and purse-proud, the Liverpoolians free and open as the ocean upon which they get their riches" (quoted in Walvin, 1978, p31). And while Blackpool was a place of social encounter, it was also one with an Opera House, an Aquarium, a Menagerie, a Winter Gardens with "high class concerts", and its famous Circus. From 1910 even the Pleasure Beach had its "edutainment" in devices like the Naval Spectatorium which used 360-degree film projection and mechanical devices to present representations of the American Civil War, and later, World War I naval battles (Turner and Palmer, 1976). Such devices were the norm for resorts which wanted to entertain their visitors, and indeed, Scarborough retains its "Naval Warfare" event to this day.
Presenting the wonders of the world has been a foundation for entertainment ever since the earliest bards told their stories. In due course the resorts of the industrialised world built fair grounds, theatres, museums, galleries, menageries and gardens drawing upon the culture, artefacts, flora and fauna of the world around them. Fairs like the Kursaal at Southend-on-Sea, Dreamland at Margate, and the Paradium at Great Yarmouth (Pearson, 1991) derived excitement from representations, however distorted, of reality. The huge Coney Island parks in New York almost became international expositions in their own right by building theatres, cinemas and other shows (Snow and Wright, 1976). They were in direct line of descent from the London, Paris, Vienna and Chicago Exhibitions long before Disney.
Visiting great houses and museums, and the educational value that related to such excursions, has been a recent subject of analysis (Tinniswood 1989, Ousby 1990). Ousby says that "Travel was a leading instrument of that post-Reformation spirit of enquiry which valued empirical knowledge over abstract speculation or book-learning derived merely from tradition" (Ousby, 1990).
It was during the middle years of the nineteenth century, and in parallel with the beginnings of formalised education for various age groups from young to old, that the practice was established of townspeople and city dwellers making day visits to the country. These were not only for what we might term `escapist' entertainment, but for `self-improvement'.
Local newspapers of the time are full of the accounts of annual outings by social groups from chapels or work-places (Delgado 1977, Jordan and Jordan 1991). There are detailed accounts preserved of the organisation required for the bigger trips, such as the well-known railway excursions from the Bass Breweries (Pearson, 1993). These show how guide books and visits of an `improving nature' were made integral to the excursions by those who organised them. One quotation from the 40-page booklet distributed to 8,000 participants in the 1914 visit to Scarborough will give a flavour:
"The improvements made since our last visit in 1910 consist of deepening the old or West Harbour by about three to four feet, so as to accommodate and give more room for fishing craft of a larger size and to the increasing number of Steam Drifters now engaged in the Herring Fishery, in addition to the Sailing Herring Fishers. The West Pier, where the fish is landed, sold and packed, has been widened - 70 feet being added - and now provides excellent curing and packing spaces for the herring curers and exporters" (Bass Museum, 1975)
A videotaped account given by a retired worker from John Crossley and Sons' carpet mills in Halifax shows in anecdote some of the cultural effects. Mrs Florence Waite took part in a long railway excursion over 30 hours to Edinburgh, Glasgow and the Isle of Bute in 1934 with Crossley's Social Club. The impact made by Edinburgh's particular historic character, and the Clyde's glorious scenery, are clear even after sixty years (Waite, 1994).
Delgado has shown how important the annual excursion was as an escape from the industrial city. In 1912 the Duchess of Sunderland foresaw "A day that is a glimpse of Paradise to the poor little mites who live in the darkness of squalid back courts and the mean streets of our cities", when raising money for a charity sending children on a countryside excursion (Delgado, 1977).
Thomas Cook had religious motives (it was his son John Mason Cook who went fully commercial in tourism), believing that through his tours "man has been brought nearer to man and nearer to his Creator" (Brendon, 1991). It must be stressed that Cook began as an evangelist, a communicator, and not a tour operator. However unconsciously, he succeeded because he removed his audience from the stress of everyday life, induced within them a receptive and relaxed frame of mind, and then tried to persuade them to adopt a new lifestyle based on Christianity and, in particular, teetotalism. This aligns with Turner's analysis of the pilgrimage with its ideas of separation, liminality and communitas (Turner 1973, 1974: see discussion in Urry, 1990 pp10-11). But it also aligns with the principles of propaganda and persuasion of the use of group psychology, removing his audience to a different setting, creating a receptive mood and using crowd psychology to persuade individuals to adopt new attitudes (Brown, 1963 and Jowett and O'Donnell, 1992). Cook's Loughborough excursion operated in terms of communication between people, and between people and environments, depending on the contrasts between Leicester (a city full of the stresses of everyday life), the thrills of the railway journey (excitement, empowerment, and innovation) and the Loughborough destination (comparative arcadia, relaxation, and enjoyment). Cook's aim was to educate, and educate effectively.
A similar set of motives inspired the Reverend T A Leonard. The Congregational minister preached a sermon at Dockray Street Church in Colne in August 1891 in which he criticised the habit some people had of 'laking' about - playing - saying that "the devil wields no small influence over holiday times". Holidays should be taken sensibly, sacredly indeed. Leonard's view was "Speak to the earth and it will teach thee" (Speake, 1993). The idea of education within holidays was present when Leonard went on to encourage a group of thirty men to organise a holiday in Ambleside in 1891, and Caernarfon the next. By 1893 he was Secretary "of a scheme which embodies a new idea of summer holidays", inviting adult education classes and Pleasant Sunday Associations to join in visits to Ambleside and Keswick, walking by day and enjoying music and `lecturettes' in the evenings. The rambles were conducted by a University companion guide appointed by the National Home Reading Union (Speake, 1993). This was the beginning of the Co-operative Holidays Association, now the Countrywide Holidays Association and operating many holiday homes for its members.
Formal education out of doors is little covered in tourism books, yet it is one which by its variety and early encounter by students must underlie so much of their subsequent interest in travel. A very early example of this activity is that of the herbarizing organised by the Society of Apothecaries of London. This was the practical means by which apprentice apothecaries could be taught to recognise plants which would have medicinal values. The first one known took place in May of 1620, beginning at 5.OOam with a rendezvous at St Paul's in the City. The day was spent out in the country, then relatively close by. Within a short while six excursions a year were being held. After a while a paid official known as the Demonstrator of Plants was employed to lead the excursions, and in 1673 the Chelsea Physic Garden was established as a permanent demonstration area. It has since become an important tourist attraction in its own right. Herbarizings continued up to 1824 when it was decided London was too big to allow for day excursions to open countryside, and the educational practice was abandoned. By then, many botanists had received their introduction to the subject through these events (Allen, 1976).
In 1732 The Society of Dilettante was formed from a group of men who had been on the Grand Tour. The Society helped to pioneer archaeological field study. Geology field teaching was in turn developed from 1804 by Robert Jameson of Edinburgh who took formal field classes as far away as the Western Isles. Geography field teaching in the UK got off to a relatively late start and in 1938 a survey of London schools showed that "hardly a half are able to conduct outdoor field work" (Dilke, 1965 p17). This was despite John Ruskin having said that "the country will become an outer and uncovered classroom, a Divine museum utilised by our teachers" (Reynolds, 1901). Excursions were the exception, rather than the rule. One did occur in 1886, when Scott Keltie reported to the Royal Geographical society that the children of Gordon's Hospital School, Aberdeen, were "taken out into the country and in a simple, rough but effective, and to them, interesting and instructive way, are taught to draw maps of a small area for themselves" (Dilke, 1965). On the other hand, adult geographers made group excursions quite early. The Manchester Geographical Society went to inspect the new docks in Preston in the autumn of 1887 (Brown, 1971) for example. It should be remembered that individual adult travellers were being drawn towards industrial locations to see the changed landscapes presented from at least the 1780s onwards, as has been seen above. Field Societies, Scientific and Literary Societies and Geographical Societies continued through the nineteenth and twentieth centuries to make such excursions.
The practice widened out in the twentieth as manufacturers like Cadburys and Wedgwoods, anxious to promote their methods and products, opened their doors to all kinds of groups. Lever Brothers joined with the LMS railway company to promote tourism to their factory in Port Sunlight in 1926 (Cole and Durack, 1992). In the 1950s and 1960s both companies handled thousands of adult and school visitors. The present author recalls making visits to factories such as Lotus Shoes in Stone, British Rail Engineering in Crewe, a Co-op Dairy in Llangadog, the Velindre Tinplate Works and the Steel Company of Wales, Port Talbot. The steel and engineering companies used visits for general public relations purposes, the consumer goods makers used them to sell their wares. Even tiny manufacturers got involved, for example Joseph Dobson and Sons of Elland who from 1980 welcomed visitors in order to raise their profiles against their big competitors.
Indeed, Marling has recently shown how even that great icon of theme park tourism, Walt Disney, began with ideas for a "kiddies park" (Marling, 1997). Disney's new Burbank studio of 1939 was laid out on production-line principles. Having seen Snow White, people were asking to see how the animation was done. Disney thought that those who did visit found the whole process boring, and in any case there was none of the fairy tale magic on the production floor. So he began to plan a special area which would show both magic and motion picture production.
Early in the twentieth century it took people like James Fairgrieve, training geography teachers in the 1920s, to foster an interest in school excursions and holidays. He suggested children in east London could begin by finding out "information about the commodities that their fathers are handling". They could look at the doors of Fleet Street to see listed the newspapers of the British Empire as a starting point for discussing its geography. They would continue by making excursions to other places. "This is a benefit not only to the understanding of other lands but to the understanding of the homeland also. In a very real sense the homeland is measured by other lands: also, unless it is seen in its world setting, it is not really understood" (Fairgrieve, 1926). Factory visits were being added by progressive teachers at least from the late 1940s.
The nineteenth century was the great age of self-improving societies, often growing out of church or chapel groups who began to investigate interesting subjects. Others were specifically for self-help. The earliest - and still thriving with its private museum and lecture programme and visits - was the Spalding Gentlemen's' Society, founded in 1710. There were Mechanic's Institutes and worker's educational groups, and the subject societies for literary and scientific pursuits, from botany to geology and geography, many of which organised and ran their own excursions. In the United States similar self-help groups emerged in the diverse and often isolated settlements further west, while in the east urban groups sprang up, and the Chautauqua, already mentioned, had an important effect.
The original Chautauqua started as a summer vacation and training centre for Sunday School teachers at Chautauqua Lake, near to Lake Erie, in New York State. It developed as a place for discussion and debate on classical and current topics. Scholars, actors, speakers and exhibits were arranged, plays put on, great speeches re-made and debates staged (Colorado Chautauqua Association, 1997). Home-reading circles became part of the system, and for a time participants could study for a degree at a Chautauqua University.
The idea was imported to Britain largely through the work of J B Paton, who had been involved in setting up a University Extension in Nottingham. In 1887 Paton formed a small committee with John Percival, Headmaster of Rugby School, and from 1888 they organised Summer Meetings at Oxford with educational courses (Kelly, 1970). This line continued as the growth in the UK of adult education.
By the late nineteenth century the ideas of Frederic Le Play (Beaver, 1962) and then Patrick Geddes (Meller, 1990) had formed the basis for sociological field work with a strong geographical basis. Geddes' ideas has particularly interesting features in the context of the present paper. In Paris in 1878 he visited the International Exhibition and was enthusiastically inspired by the display of the reconstruction of Paris after the Franco-Prussian war of 1870. Returning to Edinburgh he became immersed in ideas of planning and improvement, one step in which was the purchase by him of the old Observatory at the lower end of the Castle Esplanade. It housed (and still does) a camera obscura which was used to project views of the city onto a white `projection table' for visitors to study.
Renamed the Outlook Tower and using whatever small funds and voluntary help that he could muster, Geddes began to create a kind of regional museum. He was also involved in teaching at the Edinburgh Summer Meetings or schools, linking the educational work with the displays in his Outlook Tower and excursions into Edinburgh to encourage city renewal.
Helen Meller, in Patrick Geddes: Social Evolutionist and City Planner, shows how he absorbed ideas from the efforts of museums to collect and classify social knowledge (Meller, 1990). The Musee Sociale in Paris built on ideas which had been shown at the Paris Exhibitions of 1867, 1878 and 1889 about the study of people and their environs. The International Bibliographical Institute in Brussels was systematically collecting and classifying human knowledge in order to act as a centre of study. Geddes devised an idea for an `Index Museum' in his Outlook Tower with a kind of three-dimensional encyclopaedia of the world installed in it.
Geddes again went to an Exhibition in Paris, this time in 1900, organising a huge programme of lectures and tours in a Summer School there. "Eight hundred classes were held in just 120 days, and the average attendance at these was between 40 and 502" (Meller, 1990). And there at the Exhibition were pavilions and buildings from around the world. Geddes wanted to save them as a permanent `Index Museum', a centre of study of the world's cultures and societies. It failed to happen for reasons of cost and ownership.
Within the Paris Exhibition of 1900 the strands of education (Summer School), tourist attraction (the displays) and inspiration for progress (the ideas communicated by the displays and the School) came together. It did not become permanent: that would happen in museums and inter-activity centres in another age, perhaps more related to heritage than to visions of the future as Geddes wanted, but the principles, firmly based in educative forms of tourism, were all there.
A different - though related - reason was behind the origins of the Scout and Guide movement, which turned mere country visiting into an organised, structured, educationally-motivated activity. "Our business is not merely to keep up smart `show' troops, but to pass as many boys through our character factory as we possibly can: at the same time, the longer the grind that we can give them the better men they will be in the end" (Baden-Powell, 1908). Scouting was one of the occupations which, along with inspirational books like Bevis: The Story of A Boy (Jefferies, 1882) and Swallows and Amazons (Ransome, 1929) created the idea of adventure holidays which is at the heart of modem children's activity tourism. Jefferies educated his readers about the countryside: Baden-Powell trained his, through Scouting For Boys into adventurers who grew inwardly through their interaction with the rural environment.
As Michael Rosenthal shows, much of scout culture drew upon the works of the Anglo-American author, Ernest Thompson Seaton (Rosenthal, 1986). Between the 1880s and the 1900s Seton spread ideas of what he called Woodcraft' as a way for young American males to learn from, and be entertained by, life in the great outdoors. He based his philosophy on the native North American culture and outlined a national movement based on features from his reading of native life, with a liberal dash of European chivalric ideas thrown in. Baden-Powell's movement adopted some of the ideas, but Seton's Woodcraft Indians continue still as a separate organisation. There was also an influence on the European Woodcraft Folk movement which grew amongst people who wanted a youth organisation which avoided what they saw as Baden-Powell's establishmentism and military leanings. Within one sector of tourism therefore it is possible to follow the development of a clear political/philosophical strand.
During the nineteenth century the growth and diversity of schooling allowed experimentation in terms of organisation and curriculum. Influenced by Rousseau's ideas about the importance of an individual's development some innovations were made which tried to relate teaching environments to the pupil's needs. In England, Cecil Reddie founded Abbotsholme School in 1889 as somewhere which could take a boy "to train him how to live" (Lawson and Silver, 1973). This meant daily, outdoor activities such as drill, sports, river bathing, running, carpentry and gardening.
Just after World War I Kurt Hahn co-founded Salem School in Germany with Prince Max von Baden, in which the development of character and selfdiscipline were foremost. Abbotsholme had had an influence. With the arrival of Nazism Kurt Hahn was forced to leave, and he moved to Britain_ In late 1933 he opened Gordonstoun School in Scotland, with a disciplinarian programme which included ideas of service to the nearby community. From 1935 onwards boys were enrolled as HM Coastguards, and they later operated a small fire brigade. The `Moray Badge' scheme was devised with tests in athletics, expeditions, and life-saving, partly in response to a national debate about the poor quality of fitness in young people (Hahn, 1957). It is interesting to note the similarities to matching fears expressed at the turn of the century about the health and character of boys which helped lead to the Boy Scouts.
Out of the Badge scheme came three experimental; residential summer schools in Invemess-shire and Morayshire. Their success led in turn to the formation of the Outward Bound schools, this time in Wales, at Aberdovey, to which Gordonstoun had been evacuated on the outbreak of war. From 1941 an Outward Bound Sea School commenced operation, offering courses to young men from industry, not only in maritime activities, but also 30-mile mountain country expeditions (Hahn, 1957). The Outward Bound movement has also grown and expanded its activities to a number of British and European centres.
In Germany the idea of the school excursion had gained ground rapidly from 1907 and the formation of the wandervogel at Jena in January that year. Its aims were "to promote rambles and excursions of German boys in their own and other neighbourhoods, and thus to awaken in them a taste for the beauties of nature, and to give them opportunities of learning to know their German homeland and its people at first hand" (Thomson and Haehnel, 1909). Local associations were set up and older children encouraged to qualify as guides. Books and maps were bought and could be hired out to non-members. Travel and overnight accommodation were to be simple - fourth-class rail and country barns.
Earlier still, the Eberfeld Realgymnasium was one of several schools which held indoor lessons until noon and then gymnastics or excursions. On six afternoons in the summer term the whole four hundred children at Eberfeld would march out of town behind a band, the older children going the furthest, and teachers instructing the pupils along the way. Games would round off the excursion, for which six hours was allowed. The government extended the Whit holiday to allow higher classes make longer journeys to places like the Westerwald, Taunus and Eiffel districts. Up to twenty boys and their masters might make a fortnight's visit to somewhere like Italy. The days started early and consisted of long walks followed by evening recreation ("beer and songs") and summaries by the boys of what they had done - often given in foreign languages. The pupils paid themselves in advance, with poorer boys charged less, but "for poor masters no funds were provided" (Bahre, 1901). It is noteworthy that German interest in exploring environments seems to have underpinned the country's ideas in gestalt psychology, to which reference will be made later.
Another organisation began in Germany in the same year, 1907, that Baden-Powell was holding his first scout camp on Brownsea Island in Poole Harbour. A teacher, Richard Schirmann, opened his school to a group of children from slum areas, so that they could enjoy a countryside holiday. Two years later Altena Town Council and a local businessman gave money to turn Burg Altena into a hostel. It was the start of the 'wandervogel' movement, anti-militarist, anti-machinery, pro-country life. Britain set up its first hostel in 1930 though a water-supply problem forced it to close soon afterwards. The YHA dates from that year, and the next year saw no fewer than twenty hostels open (Coburn, 1950). Country life, exploration and adventure were the aims of all their visitors.
In Britain all of these strands became woven together after 1945 and new ones were added. The Field Studies Council in Britain opened its first centre in Suffolk in 1946, and the first local authority centre, White Hall near Buxton, opened in 1950 (Parker and Meldrum, 1973). National Parks, open air museums, commercially-run adventure centres, stately homes and historic houses, castles and wartime defences, zoos and sea-life centres, gardens and country parks, heritage centres and inter-active science centres, factory tours and craft demonstration units made their appearances on ever larger scales. Were these just part of a heritage industry making new money, or an extension of the very long growth of educational tourism? School visits, especially when linked to the National Curriculum, can provide the bread-and-butter visitor income that they need to survive.
This account of some of the educational aspects of tourism is not complete, nor could it be within the confines of a discussion paper. Nor does it attempt to discuss in detail who benefited from each, nor just how much benefit there was, nor how prejudiced or enlightened any of it might have been. What is important here is the acknowledgement of the frequent close liaison that there has always been in tourism with education. It is fair, and appropriate, to say that all forms of information and opinion, whether expressed between individuals, through the mass media, or in education, are subject to limitations on access, quality and objectivity. The point is that tourism is just as good, or just as bad, as they are. But it has, like them, a potential for being beneficial.
Click here for the Bibliography
Visit a primary American educational attraction - Plimoth Plantation: click here
NEW! Click here to read Alan Machin's blog