This film is part of Free

Mining Review 6th Year No. 5

An intriguing blast from soccer's past: Wrexham meet Beighton Miners Welfare in FA Cup First Round.

1953 9 mins


Action highlights of a 1952-53 FA cup first round match form the centrepiece of this fine edition of the cinemagazine Mining Review. It's an intriguing blast from soccer's past: the days when a miners welfare team (from Beighton, S. Yorks) could face a third division club (step forward, Wrexham FC). An zealously even-handed commentary stresses that despite Wrexham's 3-0 victory, Beighton put up a highly respectable defence. Not only that - Wrexham's goal-scorers are fellow coalminers!

In a characteristic Mining Review mix, the football story is bookended by a 'technical' opening item, and a 'social' closing piece, part of the series' ongoing sequence of pit 'Profiles'. The opener, from Lanarkshire, re-packages footage from an internal technical training film, 'Surface Mechanisation (Kingshill Colliery)', as the peppy and pleasurable 'Rope Trick'. The Profile, meanwhile, is of the NCB's East Midlands Area medical officer, based at Thorseby (later, incidentally, among the very last UK pits to close, in 2015). It's framed as a family story: the doctor and his brothers, all university graduates, are sons of a miner who's worked 43 years underground (i.e. since 1910!). It's a touching illustration of the social mobility, resulting from social reform, that marked the last century.