The South West Film and Television Archive (SWFTA) is the regional film archive for the South West of England. Established in 1993, SWFTA's core collection comprises of the combined programme libraries of Westward Television and TSW (Television South West). The archive also cares for a significant number of donated film collections, both amateur and professional, dating back to the early 1900s.
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Miniskirt - Passion and Power
News 1966 4 mins
From the collection of:
A woman models the iconic sixties’ miniskirt in the centre of Plymouth. Differing attitudes towards this daring wear as a bold fashion statement are caught on film. Miniskirts took the fashion world by storm in the swinging sixties and define the era. Short skirts were seen as items of dance or sports’ clothing or worn by the film actresses of the 50s in films such as ‘Flight to Mars’ or ‘Forbidden Planet’. Historically short skirts have been worn by soldiers and tribes.
Mary Quant is the most recognised name associated with the miniskirt like André Courrèges in France. Quant opened a boutique “Bazaar” on London's King’s Road, Chelsea in 1955 and encouraged experimentation with fashion. By the 60s many women expressed themselves politically and through new freedoms such as the way they dressed. Did Mary Quant invent the miniskirt? Mary had considerable influence in the mass appeal of the style of the miniskirt or minidress at the time. The popularity of the miniskirt endures to this day but remains as a contentious issue in many cultures.
Textiles on Film
Caefelin Laundry, Llangollen
Home movie 1937 20 mins Silent Location: Llangollen
Nellie Boote's laundry in Market Street in operation, the women dashing away with all manner of smoothing irons as clothes are sorted, mended, washed, ironed and sorted again.
Woven by Hand
Documentary 1970 11 mins Location: Macclesfield
Handloom weaving, and its place in the history of textile production.
Platt's Lap Converter
Promotional 1951 13 mins Location: Oldham
Forget the carding machine - you need a lap convertor. Puzzled? Find out more here.
Textile Factory in Redruth
News 1975 1 mins Silent Location: Redruth
Redruth Cottage Industry
Electricity - Power for Good
Promotional 1961 35 mins Location: Whitby
The NEEB sells an electrical future for modern homes and industries in the 1960s.
Documentary 1950 58 mins Location: Wycoller
The looms of Lancashire: how the upheaval of the Industrial Revolution created the thriving textile industry.
Current affairs 1961 5 mins Location: Plymouth
Cruising into the history books SS Liberté makes its final voyage stopping at Plymouth en route to Le Havre.
Model Clipper Sailor
Current affairs 1965 2 mins Location: Plymouth
Former shipwright turns his talents to model-making.
Current affairs 1977 7 mins Location: Plymouth
The skateboard phenomenon is taking off on Plymouth Hoe.
Current affairs 1970 3 mins Silent Location: Plymouth
Training centre for film and television engineers shows analogue before digital.
Current affairs 1984 1 mins Location: Plymouth
Reporter tests the theory of caviar heightening libido.
Current affairs 1963 5 mins Location: Plymouth
Royal Navy Bomb Disposal Unit based in Plymouth covers the South West as a service for unexploded munitions.
Hovis: Boy on the Bike
Advert 1974 1 mins Location: Shaftesbury
A classic slice of British advertising history, though that hill's not as Northern as it looks...
Workforce of Parkgate Iron and Steel Co., Rotherham (1901)
Non-Fiction 1901 3 mins Silent Location: Rotherham
Edwardian workers react to the camera at one of Rotherham's major employers.
Workforce of Ormerod's Mill, Great Moor Street, Bolton (1900)
Non-Fiction 1900 1 mins Silent Location: Great Moor St, Bolton
Eager youngsters burst out of the gates of a Victorian cotton mill.
The Henley Regatta
Sport 1901 1 mins Silent Location: Henley-on-Thames
It's the first weekend of July 1901, and high society are on the Thames
Advert 1898 1 mins Silent Location: St Pancras
An unusual farewell in this charming early film
Non-Fiction 1900 1 mins
The magic of a real solar eclipse filmed by a famous magician
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