Kathryn Ferry is an independent architectural historian, writer and lecturer. Her research interests include seaside history and Victorian architecture, specifically the work of designer Owen Jones. Although she grew up near the sea in North Devon it was not until her early twenties, when she began taking day trips to the East Anglian coast, that Kathryn discovered a passion for beach huts. She continued to pursue this new love while studying for her PhD at Cambridge University and in the summer of 2002, went on a two-month journey around the English coast to record the state of the nation's huts. She has been researching their history every since and is now the national beach hut expert.
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If you have stories to share of trivia on beach huts then Kathryn would love to hear from you... Email:kathryn
Beach huts and Bathing Machines
Kathryn's first book Beach huts and bathing machines was the Shire Books
bestselling title of 2009. This illustrated survey tells the story of beach huts past and present, from their origins in eighteenth century bathing machines to the many types of colourful hut that now line the UK coast.
The book is available from the beach-huts.com shop for £5.99 plus £1 post and packaging. If you would like a signed copy select the signed - "yes please" menu option...
Sheds on the Seashore
For a more in-depth look at the fascinating and often comic story of how the humble beach hut evolved from a mobile changing cubicle into a highly desirable piece of seaside property, check out Kathryn’s second book Sheds on the seashore: a tour through beach hut history. Taking the beach hut as a starting point to explore the broader history of the seaside, this book also includes an account of Kathryn’s two-month trip around the English coast and the stories of the people she met along the way. A must-have for anyone who loves beach huts!
Praise for Sheds on the Seashore
A fascination for beach huts has taken Kathryn Ferry on an odyssey around the British coast... recording the huts she finds and the people she meets. The result is part historical account, part travelogue, consistently entertaining and peppered with anecdotes. An excellent account of these most idiosyncratic of British buildings. Coast magazine
What a great release from thinking about The Real World! I have always loved beach huts. When we were little we went to Cornwall with another family. There were lots and lots of them and there was a beach hut. Us children weren't allowed in it - it was used for doling out sandwiches. (Banana and jam sandwiches, which was rather odd, but we got to like them.) But I love the idea of a haven away from the cold, where you can boil a kettle and change out of your wet bathing suit (knitted, of course.) Katie Fforde, novelistAs a beach hut owner myself - I have one on the Norfolk coast - I quickly found myself identifying with many of the characters that Kathryn met on her travels and I really enjoyed her good delve into the quirky "Englishness" that makes our love affair with these humble "sheds" so strong Graham LKathryn, I love your books - especially "Sheds on the Seashore". It’s so well researched, informative, entertaining - and readily accessible. Congratulations! Jean >> BUY NOW <<
British Seaside Holidays
And if you’re a fan of old-fashioned bucket and spade holidays you’ll enjoy Kathryn’s book on British seaside holidays, also available from the beach-huts.com shop. Full of evocative pictures and packed with information this book documents the heyday of seaside holidays from the 1870s to the 1970s.
Kathryn has contributed to numerous press articles as well as radio and TV programmes including the popular BBC series Coast, The One Show, Countryfile and BBC Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour.
In September 2009 Kathryn visited Mablethorpe for the third annual Bathing Beauties Festival. This event grew out of the Bathing Beauties® competition which was launched in 2006 to get architects from around the world to come up with designs for a twenty-first century beach hut. Several of the winning entries have now been built along the Lincolnshire coast and as one of the judges in the original competition Kathryn was thrilled to be signing copies of her book outside the newest addition to the Prom "A hut for gazing and canoodling". For more details see www.bathingbeautiesfestival.org and to watch Kathryn at the festival check out: