During the early decades of the twentieth century, the Vinery provided a sheltered, and possibly fashionable, spot from which to enjoy the view and take the air. Folkestone’s success as a resort and “watering place” had been built in part upon its warm climate and healthy environment. From a seat in the Vinery, visitors could appreciate these attributes at their best and watch the scene below.
In 1920 Walter Jerrold, deputy editor of the Observer, writer, biographer and travel writer, described this view in his book Folkestone and Dover, which was published by Blackie and Son Ltd for their “Beautiful England” series:
If we look over the railings, we do so down a bank of close-grown trees and shrubs to the shore promenade and the beach, thronged in the season with its thousands of holiday people. Away to our left is the harbour pier; before us is the long pleasure pier, skating rink, switchback, and other attractions in which children and those who have the happy faculty of becoming children again in season of holiday, find varied attraction. It is as though Folkestone had been so arranged as to suit the most diverse tastes of those who seek for healthful recreation by the side of the sea. On the Leas is a quiet promenade, stretching the greater part of the length of the town front, where on the level height the sea air may be enjoyed without any noise or disturbance from those who take their holiday more strenuously; and at two points along the cliff there are lifts – mountain railways in miniature as it were – by which in one place in a few minutes may be effected the change from the promenade of the Leas to ‘all the fun of the fair’ on the sea front and pier.