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Summer Palace Beijing and Tsientsin
Summer Palace Beijing and Tsientsin

Summer Palace Beijing and Tsientsin 1929


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Summer Palace Beijing and Tsientsin 1929

4 mins United Kingdom

This film begins with a performing bear and a line of Bactrian camels before depicting scenes of Beijing's Summer Palace, Longevity Hill and Kunming Lake. The filmmaker's spouse, Charlotte Simpson, walks among buildings and sculptures before being seen enjoying a traditional Chinese meal. The film switches to a garden where the Simpsons and a colleague have fun enacting an award ceremony. The final shot shows a sign in Mandarin Baihua script advertising dyed fabrics.

William Simpson, who made this film, worked for the Bradford Dyers Association in Shanghai, at Number 1, The Bund. His wife Charlotte was born in China's Lushan mountains and she married William, who originally came from Bradford, in Shanghai's St Ignatius Roman Catholic Cathedral. The couple left Shanghai before the city was overrun by the Japanese Army and by 1938 had left China for good.

Screen Archive South East is a public sector moving image archive serving the South East of England. The archive's collections of magic lantern slides, films, videos and associated materials capture the many varied aspects of life, work and creativity from the early days of screen history to the present day and serve as a rich and invaluable historical resource.

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