Butlins Days and Suicidal Tendencies

After keeping in contact with an old school friend, Mark Bevan, he convinced me to get a job at Butlins, Bognor Regis. I used to go on holiday with my Dad, Step-Mum and her Great-Nephew Daniel; good times and I ended up with my first crush on a Redcoat named Kelvin, who went by the nickname, Sonic.

My time at Butlins had some ups and downs. I made some great friends there, but the early days were some really tough times for me. It was the first time I was away from home by myself and I felt very alone. My housemates, Caz and Sam, along with Dez, were fantastic and rallied round as best they could but they had no idea what was going on deep inside. When I first arrived they had no record of my being there. I had a phone interview and somehow my paperwork got mixed up with someone else’s so for the first few days I was staying on site illegally. Security was being very kind though by turning a blind eye and letting me stay in the room that was earmarked to be mine. I had an interview on the 5th day of my being there and I then had an induction meeting with HR the following day. I finally started work the following Monday but was working some really rubbish hours and getting tired. The shift work was a shock to the system after being in a 9-5 job for the last eight months that’s for sure. I was into my third week and I thought I would be settled in to everything by now, but I was wrong. I was beginning to get very depressed and was suffering from really bad headaches. It felt like nothing would get rid of them. I was still self-harming and the headaches were so bad I was taking Nurofen like they were Smarties. I knew I overdone it one day and told Dez straight away. He contacted security and they sent the medical team down to check me over. I was fine luckily but he stayed with me for the rest of the night watching videos and gave me a very good talking to. I owe him my life despite what other people think about him. My only regret is we’re not still in contact.

I worked at Butlins for only six months but made some fantastic friends in a lot of people, most of whom I still keep in contact. My Mancunian friend, Caz, and her clan are like my surrogate family as they took me in one Christmas recently. The guy in charge of where we were working was a complete asshole. We worked our butts off over Christmas, including Christmas day, then come New Year as we were complaining about him forcing us to work extra hours for nothing, he sent us home with a thank you for all our hard work. The next day we were rudely awakened to find him hammering at the door with security, demanding us off site for walking out on shift. So that was us jobless and homeless on New Year’s Day. My Northern friends had to make their way back up to Manchester; I luckily had family to take me back to Caterham. I cried every night for a week when I got back. I couldn’t believe someone could be that evil and I missed my friends deeply. They had become a massive part of my life and left a huge hole. They were the family I had become to know despite my rocky beginnings. And I needed Dez to get me through it. He was on the other end of the phone helping me through tough times, reassuring me that life wasn’t against me and that things will get better. And sometimes bad things happen for a reason to make us better people. Even though he wasn’t around in person, he got me back on my feet again and built up my confidence to do various short term jobs before ending back at Ann Summers again. I did a short stint there before my Butlins days.


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