During the nineteenth century Folkestone changed from being a small fishing village to a fashionable resort and busy cross-Channel port. The town expanded dramatically and by the turn of the century large hotels were being built to accommodate the wealthy, and a theatre, bathing establishment and pleasure pier were all built.
Fashionable Folkestone came to an end with the advent of the First World War, when it experienced a huge influx of refugees and its harbour became a prime military embarkation point. After this war Folkestone realised that if it was to survive as a holiday resort, it would have to attract working-class families - not just the wealthy. Later, the building of the M20 and the Channel Tunnel all meant that Folkestone underwent further major changes and now, at the start of a new millennium, Folkestone is equipped with a high-speed rail link to London with travel times of less than an hour, and with the philanthropic investment of Roger de Haan, it is undergoing another change of guise as the town seeks to reinvent itself as a hub for arts and high culture.
In this fascinating collection of images, most of which have not been published before, local author and historian Alan F. Taylor illustrates the proud history of this seaside town. Folkestone From Old Photographs provides something for everyone, be they long-time residents or first-time visitors.