The British Film Institute presents the best global cinema on-demand:
From classic and contemporary films to the best of the BFI National Archive.

Promotional

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View Baxholme: A Tour of their Nottingham Factories
Baxholme: A Tour of their Nottingham Factories
Watch for free 18 mins

Baxholme: A Tour of their Nottingham Factories 1955

Jacquards, bobbins, warp and looms: Holmes and Baxter Limited of Nottingham demonstrate the intricate art of the lace factory.

18 mins United Kingdom

View Birth of the Broadway
Birth of the Broadway
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Birth of the Broadway 1927

Roll call for staff at the new Broadway Super Cinema, Stratford, as uniformed employees - from sweet seller to projectionist - line the street.

2 mins United Kingdom

View Broadland Adventure
Broadland Adventure
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Broadland Adventure 1954

The boating holiday business was big on the Broads but fleet hire firm Blakes still had to advertise to entice 'would be sailors' to come onboard.

20 mins United Kingdom

View The Broads of Norfolk and Suffolk
The Broads of Norfolk and Suffolk
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The Broads of Norfolk and Suffolk 1920

This promotional film made as a series focused on 'Beauty Spots of Britain' must have been a photographer's dream commission.

9 mins United Kingdom

View Bronze Week at Sheringham
Bronze Week at Sheringham
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Bronze Week at Sheringham 1961

"To strive and not to yield" - wise words from Tennyson's poem Ulysses end this film made to promote the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme at the Norfolk 'camp'.

11 mins United Kingdom

View Butterley 1943: Codnor Park Wagon Works
Butterley 1943: Codnor Park Wagon Works
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Butterley 1943: Codnor Park Wagon Works 1943

Amongst the white hot metal and the pounding drop hammer the men and women of Butterley Engineering work tirelessly in producing railway wagons for Britain's war effort.

9 mins United Kingdom

View Can We Help You?
Can We Help You?
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Can We Help You? 1958

The new luxury of the fitted carpet in 1950s Britain is brought wonderfully to light in luscious Kodachrome colour in this film of a Batley carpet manufacturer in operation.

7 mins United Kingdom

View Celebrating a Centenary
Celebrating a Centenary
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Celebrating a Centenary 1956

A century of corset manufacture by Symingtons of Market Harborough is celebrated with a slap-up meal in a marquee and much merriment on the sports ground.

34 mins United Kingdom

View C J & Co Cutlery
C J & Co Cutlery
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C J & Co Cutlery 1935

This atmospheric film perfectly captures the character of a 1920’s cutlery workshop, exhibiting the pride the men and women took in their work of making specialised knives.

36 mins United Kingdom

View Construction of Lewis's, Leeds
Construction of Lewis's, Leeds
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Construction of Lewis's, Leeds 1932

As the Chrysler Building was going up in New York in 1930, Leeds is putting up its new Lewis’s department store, with construction workers similarly balancing on steel girders.

15 mins United Kingdom

View Cymru a Chynilo
Cymru a Chynilo
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Cymru a Chynilo 1947

Post Office savings: good for the family and good for Wales. That’s the message conveyed by narrator Hugh Griffith, the actor, advocating sensible thriftiness to all.

7 mins England

View A Day at the Show
A Day at the Show
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A Day at the Show 1961

County agricultural shows have always been a great draw and good opportunity for local businesses to promote themselves and celebrate their success.

18 mins United Kingdom

View Did You See Our "Jalopy" in Chichester?
Did You See Our "Jalopy" in Chichester?
Watch for free 6 mins

Did You See Our "Jalopy" in Chichester? 1953

An unusual film which accidentally captured scenes of Chichester before traffic was banished from the city centre.

6 mins United Kingdom

View Durham Carpets
Durham Carpets
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Durham Carpets 1978

The warp, the weft, and a good old yarn! Hugh Mackay’s display an explosion of colourful 1970s carpet designs in Durham.

24 mins United Kingdom

View Durham Constabulary Open Day
Durham Constabulary Open Day
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Durham Constabulary Open Day 1973

70s crowds see CCTV for the first time at the Durham Police Open Day.

31 mins England

View Durham Police Cadets
Durham Police Cadets
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Durham Police Cadets 1968

Young cadets train up for a life ‘on the beat’ with Durham Police in this charming film of the 1960s.

43 mins England

View Eastbourne. Sun trap of the South
Eastbourne. Sun trap of the South
Watch for free 15 mins

Eastbourne. Sun trap of the South 1966

The sunny seaside resort of Eastbourne is the star of this charming and colourful film from the 1960s.

15 mins United Kingdom

View Electrical and Mechanical Work of the LSE Instrument Departments
Electrical and Mechanical Work of the LSE Instrument Departments
Watch for free 8 mins

Electrical and Mechanical Work of the LSE Instrument Departments 1950

Prepare to be baffled! This promotional film was aimed at a specialist market of engineers and technologists but nevertheless, gives a great insight into factory life in the 50s

8 mins United Kingdom

View Electricity - Power for Good
Electricity - Power for Good
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Electricity - Power for Good 1961

The NEEB sells an electrical future for modern homes and industries in the 1960s.

34 mins England

View Electric Mountain
Electric Mountain
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Electric Mountain 1987

Elidir mountain hosts an engineering miracle: Dinorwig Power Station, built in the disused Dinorwig Slate Quarry.

29 mins England

View Enchanting Bournemouth
Enchanting Bournemouth
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Enchanting Bournemouth 1961

Bournemouth looks its gorgeous best in this sumptuously colourful promotional film from 1961.

21 mins United Kingdom

View Engineers to the World
Engineers to the World
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Engineers to the World 1963

Historic Lincoln where 100 acres are dedicated to the Ruston Group whose engines provide power for industry across the world.

29 mins United Kingdom

View Eryri - yr unigeddau agos
Eryri - yr unigeddau agos
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Eryri - yr unigeddau agos 1987

An introduction to the splendours, both ancient and modern, of Snowdonia: land, sheep, slate, gold, water, power, outdoor pursuits and the artist Kyffin Williams.

24 mins Wales

View Factory Life at Bata Ville
Factory Life at Bata Ville
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Factory Life at Bata Ville 1943

From 1932, the marshes of East Tilbury were transformed by the arrival of the Bata company from Czechoslovakia who brought with them their mission to shoe the world.

2 mins United Kingdom

View Farm by the Sea
Farm by the Sea
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Farm by the Sea 1947

Without Carborundum whetstones, manufactured in Manchester, how would farmers operate? At Penarfynydd, Rhiw, shears, scythes and binder blades all need regular sharpening.

11 mins England

View Flying Visit
Flying Visit
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Flying Visit 1970

The Development Board for Rural Wales flies in fifty industrialists and buses them about mid Wales, introducing them to the incentives and investment opportunities available.

25 mins Wales

View Gateway
Gateway
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Gateway 1975

The world is your oyster at Rhoose Airport (now Cardiff Airport), a wonderful new, multi-million pound gateway to getting away.

24 mins Wales

View Golden Harvest
Golden Harvest
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Golden Harvest 1959

Two brothers went to mow – as agricultural labourers in Flintshire – and reckoned they could improve on the machinery used. Jones Balers Ltd and worldwide acclaim was the result.

35 mins England

View Gt Yarmouth & Gorleston
Gt Yarmouth & Gorleston
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Gt Yarmouth & Gorleston 1956

A promotional film made for the neighbouring East Coast resorts of Great Yarmouth and Gorleston at a time when the Norfolk seaside really was the place to be for a family holiday.

24 mins United Kingdom

View Hamilton Road Youth Centre
Hamilton Road Youth Centre
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Hamilton Road Youth Centre 1961

It's the early 60s in Colchester and for a 'new' generation of teenagers, the Youth Centre in Hamilton Road was definitely the place to hang out.

8 mins United Kingdom

View Here is the News
Here is the News
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Here is the News 1968

A behind the scenes look at the “daily drama” of producing a regional newspaper – the Manchester Evening News.

25 mins United Kingdom

View Holidays at Essex
Holidays at Essex
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Holidays at Essex 1975

Essex University makes the most of their facilities offering student accommodation as a summer tourist base.

12 mins United Kingdom

View A Home of your own
A Home of your own
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A Home of your own 1951

A fictional film promoting the new town of Hemel Hempstead and the way to a new life and new home for a London bricklayer and his family.

20 mins United Kingdom

View Ideals of Industry
Ideals of Industry
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Ideals of Industry 1950

Everything about the making of a Burton suit in 1950 is astounding: from the factory, reminiscent of the film Brazil, to the archaic machinery and the dexterity of the workers.

45 mins United Kingdom

View Ingot Pictorial Number 20 1954
Ingot Pictorial Number 20 1954
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Ingot Pictorial Number 20 1954 1954

Discover how steel has made Norman Hartnell dresses more accessible, how the industry is connected with Vampire jets and how its products are celebrated on Industrial Sunday.

22 mins United Kingdom

View The Inheritance
The Inheritance
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The Inheritance 1935

Long Eaton family receive an unexpected windfall and head for their nearest Co-operative Society shop to spend their newfound wealth.

11 mins United Kingdom

View Letchworth - Where it all started in 1903
Letchworth - Where it all started in 1903
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Letchworth - Where it all started in 1903 1952

1903 saw the launch of "First Garden City Ltd." and the purchase of development land near Hitchin. 50 years on, in Coronation year, Letchworth was worthy of another celebration.

6 mins United Kingdom

View The Liner Windsor Castle
The Liner Windsor Castle
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The Liner Windsor Castle 1959

Aerial views of the ocean liner, Windsor Castle, on the Mersey.

1 mins United Kingdom

View A Link with Shakespeare
A Link with Shakespeare
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A Link with Shakespeare 1950

Have you ever wondered what goes into the manufacture of a bicycle chain? A Coventry company attempts to boost interest by linking to their most famous regional landmarks.

7 mins United Kingdom

View Making the News
Making the News
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Making the News 1968

Scenes from the making of a regional paper - the Manchester Evening News.

35 mins United Kingdom

View Modern Merioneth
Modern Merioneth
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Modern Merioneth 1968

In a film sponsored by the Central and the Merseyside and North Wales Electricity Boards, much of what is ‘modern’ is electrical! Prologue in Welsh, commentary in English.

14 mins Wales

View The New Derwentside
The New Derwentside
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The New Derwentside 1981

Steel men work their last shift at Consett and a town loses its industrial heart.

9 mins England

View The New Horizon
The New Horizon
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The New Horizon 1959

A bright outlook in Birkenhead for a thriving British enterprise.

24 mins United Kingdom

View Newlands Carnival
Newlands Carnival
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Newlands Carnival 1931

This is a marvellous film from between the wars of children from an orphanage in Hull having a great time playing various eccentric games, such as racing wearing buckets as shoes.

12 mins United Kingdom

View No Less Precious
No Less Precious
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No Less Precious 1963

A sobering but fascinating insight into the work of Bromham Hospital, Bedford and the changing attitudes to the "mentally subnormal children" and care of the disabled.

23 mins United Kingdom

View Off for a ramble
Off for a ramble
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Off for a ramble 1951

Joining the Countrywide Holiday Association after the war to keep fit brought Jo Peters another reward - a wife!

10 mins United Kingdom

View Off Shore Gas
Off  Shore Gas
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Off Shore Gas 1979

Promotional film reviewing the natural gas industry off the East Anglian coast from the 1960s to 79

United Kingdom

View The One Millionth Engine
The One Millionth Engine
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The One Millionth Engine 1962

Politicians, press and industry leaders arrived in Peterborough to celebrate the production of the millionth diesel engine for export by the pioneering Perkins factory.

20 mins United Kingdom

View A Pageant of Empire
A Pageant of Empire
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A Pageant of Empire 1933

Woking orphans take part in a parade for Empire Day.

9 mins United Kingdom

View The Peterborough Diesel Story
The Peterborough Diesel Story
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The Peterborough Diesel Story 1959

Peterborough, "one of the most prominent industrial centres in Britain" and a Cathedral considered "one of the finest in Europe," - Perkins' customers need to hear more about it!

16 mins United Kingdom

View Port Talbot's Royal Day
Port Talbot's Royal Day
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Port Talbot's Royal Day 1970

A colourful “tented city” is erected – despite freak rainstorms - to house a banquet fit for the Queen when she opens Port Talbot’s new harbour and Basic Oxygen steel plant.

17 mins Wales

View Productive Grocery Departments
Productive Grocery Departments
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Productive Grocery Departments 1959

Colourful jams, rich sauces, sugary sweets and bitter coffee is produced and packaged by experienced hands and machines at the Co-op's Shieldhall Factory in 1959 Glasgow.

11 mins Scotland

View Rationalising City Transportation
Rationalising City Transportation
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Rationalising City Transportation 1930

Quieter than a diesel bus, more manoeuvrable than a tram. The Guy trolley bus is the answer to all your transport problems and they're 'perfectly safe up to 40mph'.

12 mins United Kingdom

View The Red Poll Story
The Red Poll Story
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The Red Poll Story 1955

As the opening credits run, you will be forgiven for thinking you are watching a Hollywood blockbuster - but as cattle, the Red Poll is a true 'star' within farming circles.

28 mins United Kingdom

View The Romance of Leather
The Romance of Leather
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The Romance of Leather 1937

This document of the tannery industry in Beverley in the 1930s gives a vivid picture of leather making, with wonderful shots of this labour intensive and highly skilled trade.

21 mins United Kingdom

View Rotherham up to Date
Rotherham up to Date
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Rotherham up to Date 1961

An absorbing picture of council services at the beginning of the 1960s, with babies getting polio jabs and girls having braces fitted, while Roots is playing at the Civic Theatre.

39 mins United Kingdom

View Royal Hospital Sheffield
Royal Hospital Sheffield
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Royal Hospital Sheffield 1979

This remarkable film leaves nothing out as it reveals the inner workings of a major 1930s hospital; from the nurse’s home, to hospital cooking and into the operating theatre.

56 mins United Kingdom

View Royal Leamington Spa
Royal Leamington Spa
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Royal Leamington Spa 1970

Tradition and a sense of history. That's what this film of Royal Leamington Spa promises for new arrivals Paul and Susan shown around by one of the town's older residents.

20 mins United Kingdom

View Saint Monday
Saint Monday
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Saint Monday 1937

Lucky Long Eaton woman wins £100 in a crossword competition and chooses to modernise her mangle and discard her dolly tub.

20 mins United Kingdom

View Scrapbook of Ford in England
Scrapbook of Ford in England
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Scrapbook of Ford in England 1959

Dancing on cars, the First World War, car-driving chimps, Dagenham factories and glamorous flappers all feature in this light history of the Ford motor company in Britain

17 mins United Kingdom

View Sheffield Parks and Gardens
Sheffield Parks and Gardens
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Sheffield Parks and Gardens 1950

A wonderful leisurely tour of the impressive public parks and copious green spaces spread out across Sheffield as they were in the 1950s, with a languid narration to match.

16 mins United Kingdom

View Sightseers (Trailer)
Sightseers (Trailer)
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Sightseers (Trailer) 2012

Young lovers Chris and Tina turn their first holiday together into a rural killing spree in Ben Wheatley's priceless black comedy.

2 mins United Kingdom

View Silver Blades Ice Skating
Silver Blades Ice Skating
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Silver Blades Ice Skating 1963

Streatham goes dancing on ice at the coolest place in town.

7 mins United Kingdom

View Silver Joy Nylons
Silver Joy Nylons
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Silver Joy Nylons 1954

With nails filed smooth to avoid snagging, the expert staff of this Derbyshire nylons firm are even ready to tackle the mystery of the seamed seamless stocking.

32 mins United Kingdom

View Something to Sing About
Something to Sing About
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Something to Sing About 1959

Converting dingy kitchens to jewels of brightness: Easiclene show the 1950s housewife how to escape grey austerity; aided by their 'charming' demonstrators.

14 mins United Kingdom

View St. Andrews
St. Andrews
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St. Andrews 1962

Iain Dunnachie guides us around the historically steeped streets of St Andrews in his narrated promotional film from 1962 detailing the town’s most lavish and iconic landmarks.

9 mins Scotland

View The Story of Wheat
The Story of Wheat
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The Story of Wheat 1953

A marvellously broad and vivid picture of what country life and farming was like in the years following the end of the war, and of how food made its way from field to dining table.

81 mins United Kingdom

View Stourport Story
Stourport Story
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Stourport Story 1958

With a million farthings needed, has head teacher Edwin Jones set an impossible target in his bid to build a swimming pool for his school at Stourport on Severn?

15 mins United Kingdom

View Success in Small Type
Success in Small Type
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Success in Small Type 1961

A tricycle at Tettenhall, Sally Cooper's new piano and the amusing story of Mr Hoyle's garden roller: all testimonials from the Express and Star's 'wonderful want ads'.

11 mins United Kingdom

View Swansea Docks in the War Years
Swansea Docks in the War Years
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Swansea Docks in the War Years 1947

Despite the title, this shows busy Swansea docks at the end of the war. A torpedoed ship is in for repair, a trawler arrives with fish, biscuits for the hungry of Europe are loaded.

17 mins Wales

View Taking the Plunge
Taking the Plunge
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Taking the Plunge 1963

Cardiff City Council promotes the attractions of The Wales Empire Pool, which has “everything”, including Turkish Baths where the camera happens to turn up on Ladies Day.

26 mins Wales

View A Taste of Norway
A Taste of Norway
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A Taste of Norway 1967

A big cheese brand travels from fjord to factory on Tyneside.

22 mins England

View Taunton Cider Where the Cidermaker's Art Is Still Recognised
Taunton Cider  Where the Cidermaker's Art Is Still Recognised
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Taunton Cider Where the Cidermaker's Art Is Still Recognised 1975

Focus on the West Country village of Norton Fitzwarren, where apples, wassailing and pub skittles compliment each other perfectly.

20 mins United Kingdom Director. Charles Mapleston

View Technological Education in Britain
Technological Education in Britain
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Technological Education in Britain 1961

Come to Manchester for technology training in an industrial city built for the purpose.

39 mins United Kingdom

View These are our children
These are our children
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These are our children 1950

In times when being disabled meant segregation and public ignorance, this film helped to raise awareness and show that children deserve fun and purpose, whatever their ability.

12 mins United Kingdom

View Thorpeness
Thorpeness
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Thorpeness 1930

With a combination of Peter Pan islands, a House in the Clouds, a safe shallow lake and sandy beach, Thorpeness has been the idyllic holiday resort for more than a century.

7 mins United Kingdom

View Time of Change
Time of Change
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Time of Change 1967

A tale of two employees, their fathers miners, who started at the Anglo Celtic Watch Company (“The Tick-Tock”), Ystradgynlais, on leaving school.

21 mins Wales

View Tulip Time in South Lincolnshire
Tulip Time in South Lincolnshire
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Tulip Time in South Lincolnshire 1953

With a Tulip Queen and acres of brilliant bright flowers to see tourists clog the roads of Spalding in search of a perfect field of blooms.

10 mins United Kingdom

View Turn Out of the Cardiff Fire Brigade
Turn Out of the Cardiff Fire Brigade
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Turn Out of the Cardiff Fire Brigade 1924

The Fire Station in Westgate Street, Cardiff, prides itself on its 8 minute mobilisation - a record?

4 mins Wales

View Twyfords Limited
Twyfords Limited
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Twyfords Limited 1929

From mining china clay to flush testing: Twyfords have a handle on everything that is involved in the production of the humble sink and WC.

17 mins United Kingdom

View University College of North Wales, Bangor
University College of North Wales, Bangor
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University College of North Wales, Bangor 1977

Students work, play and graduate, the university hoping that they will leave its portals to be of service to their country, “under the blessing of heaven”.

16 mins United Kingdom

View We Chose Skegness
We Chose Skegness
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We Chose Skegness 1961

A pools winning family with over £8,000 to spend can have a holiday anywhere they like. In the end, they forgo the Costas for Skegness - but decide to do it in style.

25 mins United Kingdom Director. Gilbert Mastin

View What's The Hurry?
What's The Hurry?
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What's The Hurry? 1934

"Wise people are hastening to Walton-On-Thames". This inventive ad promotes the Surrey town as the ultimate Christmas shopping destination.

3 mins United Kingdom

View Winding Journey
Winding Journey
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Winding Journey 1950

Across the great hidden divide separating production from product as the almost entirely female headscarved workforce labour to make electric motors in 1950s Huddersfield.

20 mins United Kingdom

View Wolverhampton into the Seventies
Wolverhampton into the Seventies
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Wolverhampton into the Seventies 1970

Bricks and mortar makes way for concrete and reinforced steel as Wolverhampton sweeps the past aside in a modernist town planning utopia.

20 mins United Kingdom

View York
York
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York 1920

York before mass tourism with a bustling railway station and market, plus remarkable and rare film of children playing at the Yorkshire School for the Blind at King's Manor.

14 mins United Kingdom

View Your Move Next
Your Move Next
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Your Move Next 1981

This endearingly stilted glamorisation of Sheffield, debunking popular stereotypes, “like the inside of a chimney", paints a vivid picture of the city at the onset of the 1980s.

14 mins United Kingdom

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