London’s Screen Archives enables Londoners see their past come alive on film. Managed by Film London, we are a unique network of historic film collections that cares for, collects and screens heritage film across the city. Together we preserve London’s rich film heritage from feature films to home movies, public information films, newsreels, and records of the capital’s many different industries.
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Inspection of Special Constables
Crowds applaud 900 Special Constables as they drill before a packed pavilion in Barking.
Non-Fiction 1916 1 mins Silent
From the collection of:
At the outbreak of war, Sir Edward Ward, who had served In India and the War Office and been appointed Chief Commandant of the Metropolitan Police Special Constabulary, called for more Special Constables to join the ranks, depleted by Army call-ups. Here, 900 such men are diligently inspected by Ward at a playing field in Barking, before they march in squares across the grass to the applause of watching crowds.
The Special Constables were volunteers, paid in expenses, who Ward organised into a more cohesive force during the war. They were asked to guard the water supply, bridges and public buildings from possible action by German agents.
1916 on Film
Non-Fiction 1916 1 mins
A humble scrub is all it takes to get these French troops in a lather.
Non-Fiction 1916 14 mins Location: Walney Island
The maiden flight of Britain's first successful rigid airship – just don’t call it a zeppelin…
Comedy 1916 12 mins
A tramp steals the clothes from a scarecrow, but when he realises two couples are using its pockets to pass messages, he sees an opportunity.
Comedy 1916 11 mins
Newlywed Tubby fancies another man's typewriter and ends up in hot water with his new wife
1916 8 mins
Preston North End play Liverpool (probably) in a regional football competition during WWI.
Interest film 1916 7 mins
Goat farming, salmon farming and copper mining all feature in this enlightening oddity.
Industry sponsored film 1979 6 mins Silent Location: Barking
It's standing room only on board the RT-Type bus as it makes its way through Barking for the last time, in this bittersweet short film from 1979.
Non-Fiction 1931 0 mins Location: Barking
Much excitement for the opening of Barking's new swimming pool - better known as the East End's Lido.
Non-Fiction 1926 1 mins Silent Location: Barking
Terrific scenes of comedy walking as hundreds policemen line-up for the annual British Police Walking Championship from Barking to Southend.
Non-Fiction 1925 1 mins Silent Location: Barking
Splendid shots of the king’s visit to the opening of a new power station in Barking, with terrific views of gleaming turbines and control panels.
Boulter Family Films: Town Show, Barking & Dagenham (1960s) Boulter Family Films: Town Show, Barking & Dagenham (1960s)
Amateur film 1960 0 mins Silent Location: Barking
Very brief shots from what appears to be the Barking & Dagenham Town Show in the mid-60s, showing some of the local beauty queens on floats.
Drama 2019 26 mins
Arkita believes herself to be be modern, liberal and independent. An unprecedented encounter with a transgender sex worker questions her beliefs.
National Blood Service: Chief Executive's up-date, November 2001 National Blood Service: Chief Executive's up-date, November 2001
Sponsored film 2001 19 mins
Martin Gorham presents a video update to his staff, outlining some of his department's past achievements and upcoming challenges.
Animation & Artists Moving Image 2020 10 mins
In a madcap musical, a 'cat'-stronaut travels the galaxy looking for the meaning of life and encounters a space pup eager to help.
2003 1 mins
A longer version of the famously icky anti-smoking promo in which cigarettes ooze fat.
Public Information Filler 2003 1 mins
“If you care, show it” - is the message to encourage voting in the Scottish elections, long before the galvanising independence referendum of 2014.
Short documentary 2021 4 mins
A South Asian gaze on representation, inequality and discrimination in UK film and TV, set against the backdrop of the casting room.