The North East Film Archive is one of a network of regional film archives established to collect, preserve and show film made in, or about the North East of England. Our collections are non-fiction, and date from the early 1900s to the present day, providing a rich record of life in the region over the 20th century. Many of our films are available to watch, free of charge, on our website.
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M.V. Ceres Built by Furness Shipbuilding Co. Ltd, Haverton Hill
The Tyne river front is at its bustling peak in this record of sea trials for the Ceres container ship.
Industry sponsored film 1951 14 mins Silent
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All ship shape for its sea trials, the MV Ceres sets off on a grim December morning, headed for the North Sea. The crew endure violent gales during tests, before returning to the Tyne for a formal handover of the ship. This is a richly fascinating record of the still thriving industrial life on the River Tyne in the early 1950s, now largely vanished. The film includes shots of the towering river front ‘hammerhead’ crane, built for North Eastern Marine Engineering in 1909.
This film was probably commissioned from Turners production house by North East Marine Engineering (NEM). Although the ship was built at Haverton Hill on the Tees, the ship’s turbine engines and boilers were constructed and installed at NEM on Tyneside. This explains the early establishing shots of the NEM works and landmark crane at Hadrian Riverside, Wallsend, after close-ups of the ship’s on-deck machinery. Of only 42 giant cantilever cranes built worldwide since 1905, this was the earliest example in England, and was Grade II* listed until removed. Some have noted the structural resemblance to sculptor Antony Gormley’s contemporary monument ‘Angel of the North’, located near Gateshead.
Shipbuilding on Film
Industry sponsored film 1957 7 mins Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
The famous Swan Hunter shipyards on the Tyne grease the slipway for another stirring launch in the prosperous 1950s.
Building and Launch of the "Crepath" at Barnstaple Building and Launch of the "Crepath" at Barnstaple
Non-Fiction 1918 5 mins Silent Location: Barnstaple
Barnstaple's experimental concrete-hulled ship gets a visit from a jolly Italian admiral.
Industry sponsored film 1940 34 mins Location: Royal Albert Dock
There’s breathtaking footage of the London’s docks at their bustling peak in this informative film celebrating the work of the Port Of London Authority.
1935 25 mins Location: Barrow-In-Furness
Paul Rotha’s brilliant film of the building and launch of SS Orion from the shipyards of Barrow-in-Furness.
Non-Fiction 1912 2 mins Silent Location: Southampton
Two of the earliest surviving editions of the Topical Budget newsreel, released in the aftermath of the Titanic disaster.
1936 2 mins Silent
The iconic Cunard White Star liner leaves the shipyard of her birth and ventures seawards for the first time.
Promotional 1966 18 mins Location: Bamburgh Castle
A Perkins Engines sponsored film on the development of British lifeboats and the history of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.
Non-Fiction 1930 10 mins Silent Location: Tynemouth
A windfall of faces and fancy dress at Tynemouth Carnival for the cameras of cinema showman Dixon Scott.
Amateur film 1960 2 mins Silent Location: Tynemouth
Focused on beauty in swimwear at the Tynemouth outdoor pool in the early 1960s.
Home movie 1959 8 mins Silent Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
A farewell at Newcastle Quayside launches a salty travelogue of sorts.
ACA Goes Down River for Special Launching of Tynemouth Lifeboat ACA Goes Down River for Special Launching of Tynemouth Lifeboat
Amateur film 1947 9 mins Silent Location: Newcastle upon Tyne
Downriver with a movie camera for a special launch of the Tynemouth lifeboat.
Amateur film 1963 19 mins Silent Location: Holy Island
The toe-dipping delights and tranquillity of the Northumbrian Riviera and beyond.
Documentary 2019 16 mins
Three years after their father passed, a family of four women come together through a series of phone calls spanning over three months.
Animation & Artists Moving Image 2017 4 mins
A comedy-drama animation about two best friends growing up in the same world but experiencing it completely differently.
Drama 2018 8 mins
Samona Olanipekun explores the concepts of home, identity and belonging, from the starting point of the theme of globalisation.
Drama 2017 16 mins
Compelling story of a complex relationship between an imperious father and his son.
Documentary 2020 28 mins
Three African American fathers unravel the incomparable partnership of forgiveness and community.
Music video 2019 8 mins
A conceptual film following musical artist Jords’ quest to serendipity. The Tree of Life’ is the cornerstone of the film as he battles to triumph through grief.
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