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.
This film is part of Free
A Christmas Story
It's Christmas 1952 and after the presents, the decorations and the cake are made ready, all generations of the family gather for the big party
Amateur film 1952 3 mins Silent
From the collection of:
This nostalgic film starts with close-ups of hands writing cards, wrapping presents, decorating the house and the Christmas cake. A tin-plate toy bus meanders across the floor and jumps into its box for wrapping. It is marked 'To Richard'. Then the guests, both young and old, start arriving. Wearing party hats they pose by the dinner table, laughing, pulling faces and joking with the camera. Interestingly, all the Christmas cards seen on the mantlepiece are secular.
Peter Mills was quite a skilled cameraman, as the degree of technical sophistication in this amateur film from the early 1950s shows. From the end of that decade and into the 1960s, Mills worked as Peter Watkins' assistant cameraman on a number of productions - including 'The Forgotten Faces' and 'Dust Fever.' Peter Watkins is perhaps best known for his controversial drama-documentary film 'The War Game', which would go on to win the 1967 Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, despite being banned by the BBC who had originally commissioned the film.
Toys Will Be Toys
Animation & Artists Moving Image 1988 5 mins Location: South Shields
Barbie dolls in pink battle khaki killing machines in a Christmas animation that cocks a snook at the “Disney Doctrine”.
Boulter Family Films: Family and Friends Christmas Party, Becontree (1965)
Amateur film 1965 2 mins Silent Location: Becontree
Two-minutes glimpse of an East London Christmas part, with a small amount of present-opening and a whole lot of hat-wearing and raucous dancing.
The Traditions of a Surgeon at Christmas
Amateur film 1962 17 mins Silent Location: Cambridge
The filmic memoirs in Cambridgeshire of heart surgeon Christopher Parish and his family, beginning with Christmas traditions, and including a royal visit. The year is 1962.
Christmas Church Parade
Non-Fiction 1914 1 mins Silent
Recruits of Lord Kitchener's 'New Army' parade on Christmas morning.
The Iles - in the garden, at the seaside, at Christmas
Amateur film 1940 10 mins Silent Location: Heath
Life with the Iles family: Summer is for cycling, the seaside, tending to tortoises and meeting delightful collie pups. Christmas is for crackers and the gift of a perfect doll.
Non-Fiction 1929 1 mins Silent Location: Glasgow
Pedestrians hustle briskly through a snowy George Square in Glasgow, while others stop to gawk at a stricken carthorse.
Local Trader's Gazette
Advert 1930 9 mins Silent Location: East Sussex
This amazing discovery shows how cinema advertising used to look in Bygone Britain - a truly nostalgic gem of a film for lovers of Britain's past
Britain, Kingdom of the Seas
1981 29 mins Location: Devon
Conservationists stand guard as the National Trust and National Trust for Scotland keep a vigilant watch on the UK’s coastline
Last Chord: The Life Story of a Merchant Seaman
Amateur film 1947 12 mins Location: Kent
There's high drama in this short film from Sonny Hanson and R P Cue - which features a maritime tragedy and men of the Dungeness lifeboat service
Filmic Review: no. 1
Amateur film 1934 14 mins Silent Location: London
A Barnes Brothers spectacular which takes in London's pageants, Margate's crowds, Birchington's carnival and Land's End's rocky coastline
Amateur film 1935 13 mins Silent Location: Kent
Three summer holidays feature in Ernest Freelove's film - with beach frolics, miniature trains and Grandma's 1930s style mobility scooter
Ramsgate to Richmond
Amateur film 1967 12 mins Silent Location: Ramsgate
Join the jolly crew aboard this cabin cruiser as it journeys from Ramsgate to Richmond in John Clague's fascinating maritime epic
The Lost Highway
Promotional 2019 10 mins
A wandering warrior dreams of a new form of expression, in this promo for UNKLE’s album The Road: Part II / Lost Highway Pt. II directed by Warren Du Preez and Nick Thornton Jones.
Colour on the Thames
1935 16 mins
A rare glimpse of 1930s London in colour: the Thames has never looked lovelier.
What's Missing from this Picture?
Advert 1946 1 mins Silent
Life is looking up! The war is over and the “Corona” Man can visit his “Corona” families once more, door-to-door.
Fun at Rhyl
Advert 1962 0 mins Location: Rhyl
Cinema advertisement for Marine Lake & Ocean Beach, Rhyl, a popular destination for crowds set on a day's fun on free rides.
Local Cinema Advertisements - Blaenau Ffestiniog and Merthyr
Advert 1942 7 mins Silent Location: Blaenau Ffestiniog
Who could deny these advertising claims: "Attractive hair is the ambition of every woman", and "Your family will enjoy Lincoln potatoes"?
Shippam's Three Beans
Advert 1955 1 mins
Operatic chickens, shrimps and salmon sing-a-long with a paste pot chorus in this vibrantly animated advert for Shippam's
About the archive
Know this place?
Do you recognise a place, building or location in this film?
Help us populate the Britain on Film map by spotting and plotting the street or location you know. This is a BFI project and anyone can help.
Go to our Britain on Film crowdsourcing site and contribute to our mapping mission – to identify locations within our archive films.Add a location