British surfing pioneers 1890 2015

The First Wave – surfers & their stories

Sat 5th Apr, 2014 to Sun 4th Jan, 2015

Museum of British Surfing, Caen Street car park, Braunton, North Devon EX33 1AA

The First Wave – surfers & their stories’ is our exciting new exhibition for telling the history of British surfing through the people who were there!

“Share the stoke & salty tales from a life in the sea from the UK’s surfing pioneers – this display brings our surfing heritage to life,” says Museum of British Surfing founder Peter Robinson.

More than 100 surfers from all corners of the British Isles have been interviewed, plus we’re showing for the first time rare film clips from pre World War Two surfers like Pip Staffieri (1930s surfer) and Harry Rochlin (1920s surfer) who are sadly now no longer with us, and surfing innovators including the late Bill Bailey co-founder of Bilbo Surfboards & the European Surfing Company in the 1960s.

‘The First Wave’ exhibition is now on at the Museum of British Surfing, Caen Street car park, Braunton, North Devon EX33 1AA – see the information section on our website for opening times, admission charges and directions.

You can browse through the interviews on special touch screen units, we’re showing a new short British surfing history film produced by the makers of The Endless Winter – and of course there will be a wonderful selection of UK-made vintage surfboards and memorabilia for you to get up close & personal with.

‘The First Wave interactive display at the Museum of British Surfing will bring together voices from all parts of the British surfing world,” says Helen Munro Berry who created the display and accompanying archive. “When combined, their stories form what is perhaps the most complete history of the sport in Britain. It is a must see for all surfers – from young to old, novice to expert – and for anyone interested in Britain’s recent history.”

‘The First Wave’ was funded by the Heritage Lottery through Porthtowan Surf Life Saving Club with Helen acting as project manager. The Museum of British Surfing, the National Maritime Museum Cornwall and the Cornwall Audio Visual Archive are partners and are all holding copies of the full archives for research & display.

It also marks the first collaboration between surfing museum founder Peter Robinson, and author & 1960s surf legend Roger Mansfield – both were on on the advisory committee for the project.

Edited highlights of the interviews are also available on – which is maintained by the Museum of British Surfing as part of our UK surf heritage & education work. The museum is the perfect visitor attraction for all the family, whatever the weather and waves are doing!




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