This film is part of Free

Mountaineering by Motor Car - Climbing the Pack Horse Track of Cader Idris

The car manages the rough ground without the power of today's 4x4 vehicles. But if it had failed, the horses seen could have come to its rescue!

Amateur film 1934 2 mins Silent

From the collection of:

Logo for National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales


A car with good clearance but appearing to have nothing else in common with a modern 4x4 vehicle, fords a river and manages the rocky slopes and ground of Cader Idris without difficulty. So confident are the driver and his two passengers that they will not get stuck on the mountain, they get out the picnic hamper and relax. Interestingly, the first shot in this film shows what was doomed to become yesterday's transport passing behind the car: a horse-drawn sledge, pulling logs.

Shot by John W Meredith, a cine enthusiast who worked as a mechanical and motor engineer for the firm Thompson Brothers [TB] at Bradley Engineering Works, Bilston, Staffordshire. He was interested, therefore, in how well cars might function under pressure and, in addition to this footage, he also filmed motor car trials at Bwlch-y-Groes, a mountain pass. He made a number of short dramas on camping trips he took with fellow TB employees to Penygeulan farm, Llanymawddwy, culminating, in 1935, with a film entitled 'Gwylliaid Cochion Mawddwy/The Bandits of Mawddwy', which retold a local legend of lawlessness and mayhem and involved the whole community.