Northern Ireland Screen's Digital Film Archive is a free public access resource for teachers, students, historians and anyone who has an interest in moving images. Spanning from 1897 to the present day, the films in the Digital Film Archive cover all aspects of life in Northern Ireland and includes everything from dramas to documentaries, newsreels and features, animation to amateur footage.
This film is part of Free
Christmas in Belfast
Christmas in Belfast at the height of 'The Troubles'. Not the most wonderful time of year.
Government sponsored film 1977 2 mins
From the collection of:
Traditional holiday activities and images - Santa on his sleigh, the tree outside City Hall, a children's choir - are punctuated by reminders that not all is as it should be. British Army jeeps prowl the streets and shoppers make small talk as they have their bags searched at security checkpoints.
The film concludes with interviews with religious representatives of the Catholic and Protestant communities. Despite the difficulties that are apparent, they sound a note of optimism and envisage better times ahead. This government film is a public record, preserved and presented by the BFI National Archive on behalf of The National Archives, home to more than 1,000 years of British history.
Most Popular Free 2016
Documentary 1983 26 mins Location: Booth Wood
Life in the fast lane, as thousands roar past every day wondering why there is a farm in the middle of a motorway, and why anyone would live there.
Amateur film 1935 12 mins Silent Location: Glasgow
Hold on tight for a joyous ride around 1935 Glasgow's bustling road, rail and river transport network in this Scottish educational film.
Documentary 1956 32 mins Location: Soho
1950s Soho beats with far more energy than its 21st century counterpart in this vivid time capsule.
Swansea, Victoria - Pontardulais Railway, 1964 (June) Swansea, Victoria - Pontardulais Railway, 1964 (June)
Amateur film 1964 12 mins Location: Pontarddulais
“It would be difficult to find a more lovely train journey”, declares Swansea’s Librarian, the film-maker and narrator. Prepare to be beguiled, station by station.
Non-Fiction 1904 3 mins Silent Location: Walton-on-Thames
Midsummer haymaking larks
1973 2 mins
Terrifying public information film presenting the horrific consequences of playing in or near rivers, ponds and other water hazards.
Advert 6 mins Location: Belfast
Hangry animals demand better grub in this bizarre advert by E.T. Green
Advert 1960 0 mins Location: Belfast
This family favourite is guaranteed to have you singing all the way to the bread bin
Non-Fiction 1901 1 mins Location: Belfast
Seawards heads a great ship, the biggest of its day
Non-Fiction 1898 2 mins Silent Location: Belfast
A view down the High Street featuring the Albert Clock, a shot of Queen's Bridge and the docks
News 1981 20 mins Location: Belfast
Join Belfast’s first female Lord Mayor and reconsider how disabled people navigate the streets of Belfast.
News 1976 7 mins Location: Belfast
Witness Northern Ireland’s first telecommunications device for Deaf people
Short documentary 2021 5 mins
Film & TV Critic Hanna Flint introduces The Arbor and reflects on how Clio Barnard's debut feature fuses documentary and fictional elements in an innovative way.
Drama 2018 7 mins
Khwaaish or 'Desire' is an Indian short film that glimpses into the life of one man’s longing to find a same-sex companion, in a city that refuses to accept LGBTQIA+ people.
Animation & Artists Moving Image 2015 5 mins
Beautifully animated short film about a boy's feelings of love for another boy – his best friend.
Romance 2017 15 mins
A first-of-its-kind silent LGBTQ short film set in India, Sisak makes waves before the visuals of this film hit the shore.
Animation & Artists Moving Image 2017 12 mins
Lalit decides to come out to his parents at dinner. Seeking acceptance, he cooks his father’s favourite fish curry.
Animation & Artists Moving Image 2015 5 mins
A British Indian woman and her father discuss their opposing views on family and sexuality in this beautifully moving, visually striking 2D animated short film.
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