This film is part of Free

African Visitors to the Tower of London

An African entourage makes a spectacular appearance in postwar London.

Documentary 1949 6 mins


A party of Northern Nigerian dignitaries in traditional dress visit the Tower of London, where they find themselves as much the focus of attention as their historic surroundings. Guided by a Yeoman of the Guard, they inspect the fortifications, cannons and ravens before being escorted to their waiting Rolls-Royce.

This short film was one of more than 200 produced by the Colonial Film Unit between 1939 and 1955. With the intention of "putting the production of films for backward races on a permanent footing”, these instructional films were significant propaganda tools for colonial administration. Harmonious and mutually profitable relationships between Africans and Britons were usually portrayed. This film sees the Emir of Bedde's entourage visit the Tower as part of an extended tour in 1949, which also took in an audience with King George VI during London's Colonial Month and visits to trade and agricultural fairs throughout Britain.