Shipbuilding is a prehistoric past-time. Archaeological evidence points to ships being produced as early as 3000BC. The Torridge Estuary has seen many battles throughout its history and the town of Bideford has evolved around trade from fishing, to the export of semi-precious metals, smuggling and shipbuilding. Ships built at Bideford include HMS Mutine and HMS Garland.
Bideford is a port on the Torridge estuary with a long tradition in shipbuilding. In 1902 Robert Cook and Sons built wrought iron vessels in the Iron Yard at Appledore and in 1912 the last wooden constructed schooner ‘PT Harris’ was built after PK Harris and Sons purchased the Hubbastone yard. In recent history the shipping yards in Bideford have been used to repair, modify and build crafts and items of equipment.
The South West Film and Television Archive (SWFTA) is the regional film archive for the South West of England. Established in 1993, SWFTA's core collection comprises of the combined programme libraries of Westward Television and TSW (Television South West). The archive also cares for a significant number of donated film collections, both amateur and professional, dating back to the early 1900s.