This film is part of Free

Bruce Robertson reel 1

Short home movie capturing the devastating aftermath of a V1 flying bomb in Mitcham and then domestic scenes in Morden and Mitcham.

Amateur film 1944 12 mins Silent

From the collection of:

Logo for London's Screen Archives


This film was shot by the father of Bruce Robertson and begins with scenes of war damage on Glebe Avenue in Mitcham after it was hit by a V1 flying bomb. The bomb just missed the family pickle factory on Lewis Road, which was opened by Robertson’s grandfather in 1925. The remainder of the film shows domestic scenes, including a new baby – possibly Bruce Robertson himself – and animals including chickens and cats, as well Robertson’s grandparent’s house at 81 The Drive, Morden.

Robertson recalls that his father saw the bomb landing. Although it missed the family factory, one wall was damaged and not rebuilt until the 1950s such was the shortage of building material after the war. The films also shows scenes of domestic life at the tail end of the war, with pets, bikes and tennis games all featuring – it’s particularly amusing to see the grown-ups, including grandad, all taking a valiant turn on a child’s tricycle. There are also shots from a beach holiday, brief clips from Chessington Zoo and snowy scenes shot in Morden during the extreme winter of 1946/47.