The Yorkshire Film Archive collects, preserves, and shows film made in, or about Yorkshire. Our collections are non-fiction, dating from the 1890s to the present day, and providing a rich and visually compelling record of all aspects of lives, cultures, landscape, industries, major events and everyday activities, many of which are available to watch, free of charge, on our website.
This film is part of Free
Beck Collection 2
Even at the height of the Second World War, children – not evacuated from bomb hit Sheffield – still enjoy a ride on a carousel and lend a helping hand on the wartime allotment.
Home movie 1942 2 mins Silent
From the collection of:
This is one of several films made by Sheffield hotel proprietor Cyril Beck during the war years. In this film Beck focuses on his two young boys, who, along with many other Sheffield children, were not evacuated. Here they enjoy a wartime fair and ‘help out’ on the allotment, with their very own wheelbarrows, as part of the ‘Dig for Victory' campaign.
Cyril Beck, from a family of hoteliers, ran the Howard Hotel opposite Sheffield Railway Station. Presumably the Beck family decided that it was better to keep their sons – Tony and Jerry (aged respectively 9 and 4 at the time) – at home during the war despite the risks from aerial bombing. On the night of 12th December 1940 the nearby Marples Hotel (on Fitzalan Square), received a direct hit killing an estimated 70 people (nearly ten times that number died in two nights of bombing). Yet many other Sheffield parents also kept their children at home, judging this the best for the whole family.
Dig for Victory
Government sponsored film 1942 8 mins
The wartime potato shortage is addressed in this marvellous film from 1942 - exhorting workers and school children to lend a hand on local farms by joining Land Clubs.
Amateur film 1944 5 mins Silent Location: Otford
World War II's Food Front is seen here in the fields of Kent as farmers labour to get the harvest in on time. By way of entertainment, a barrage balloon sinks majestically to earth.
Amateur film 1942 3 mins Silent Location: Waldron
The war seems far away in this pastoral film but suddenly there's a reminder when a flight of Hurricanes pass overhead. Then it's back to the work of feeding the nation.
Amateur film 1944 2 mins Silent Location: Colchester
Women workers were in the majority at Oliver's Orchard during the war but a couple of young men here were some unexpected guests as two German prisoners-of-war joined the force.
Amateur film 1940 12 mins Silent Location: Heanton Punchardon
Wartime Farmers aim for self-sufficiency in North Devon's Heanton
Documentary 1944 11 mins Location: Somerton
How Somerton, Oxfordshire benefits from membership of the Village Produce Association during WWII.
Documentary 1897 1 mins Silent Location: Sheffield
Sheffield gives the capital a run for its money with an impressive parade celebrating the monarch, a month before the Diamond Jubilee.
Factual TV 1988 5 mins Location: Sheffield
Sheffield professional sportsmen train determined disabled adults to compete at the Special Olympics in this heart-warming short film. (
Amateur film 1958 7 mins Silent Location: Sheffield
Children from Sheffield enjoy becoming amateur dentists for the day in this informative educational film from the late 1950s.
Sponsored film 1959 9 mins Silent Location: Sheffield
A Sheffield bus strike causes traffic congestion in this film that shows the significant local impact that a workplace dispute can have.
Current affairs 1988 11 mins Location: Leeds
This film sees Sheffield Council reform and modernise their approach to female leisure activities for their diverse and busy community.
Amateur film 1942 19 mins Silent Location: Sheffield
Military men and women from Sheffield put on a show from 1942-1947 in this patriotic compilation film.
Drama 2019 12 mins
The story of an Irish couple struggling to cope with their child's gender identity.
Drama 2019 15 mins
Leo had never imagined he would see his Father kissing another man... Until it happened.
Documentary 2019 6 mins
Meet the brains behind one of London’s hottest and most creative queer nights.
Drama 2019 12 mins
Is there really a monster in Madi's closet, or is it something else that she fears?
Documentary 2018 18 mins
After leaving his rural hometown to escape homophobia, Bjørn-Tore returns decades later to participate in its first Pride parade.
Travelogue 1953 21 mins Location: York
The Stationmaster at York guides us through a typical day, from dawn to dusk.
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