National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales preserves and celebrates the sound and moving image heritage of Wales, making it accessible to a wide range of users for enjoyment and learning. Its film collection reflects every aspect of the nation’s social, cultural and working life across the 20th century, giving a fascinating insight into Welsh filmmaking, both amateur and professional.
This film is part of Free
Two young men and a dog venture into the mud of Caban Coch reservoir. Two ponies commune with a motorist on a stretch of moorland road.
From the collection of:
The heat of the 1976 summer lowers the levels of Caban Coch Reservoir in the Elan Valley and the submerged garden walls of Nantgwyllt mansion are revealed, as they were also in 1937 and 1947. Brothers Chris and Clive Powell, who had recently moved to Blaencwm farm, Llanwrthwl, and their fearless dog, Spark, brave the mud and explore the area where the house once stood. It was home to poet Percy Bysshe Shelley and his young wife Harriet Westbrook for a few short months in 1812.
Caban Coch was the first of the 4 Elan Valley dams, work starting in 1894 to provide water for Birmingham. Shelley (1792-1822) was engaged for a short time to Harriet Grove, a relative of his uncle Thomas Grove who lived at Cwm Elan (another mansion that would be drowned as a result of the dam-building programme). However, when 19-year old Shelley visited Cwm Elan in 1811, he was in love with 16-year old Harriet Westbrook of London, with whom he soon eloped. They set up home at Nantgwyllt which they hoped to buy but their plans fell through. Before long, Shelley abandoned his young wife in favour of Mary Godwin and Harriet drowned herself in London’s Serpentine lake in 1816. Shelley drowned in Italy a few years later.
Cine Wanderings (Southerndown, Elan Valley dams, St Fagans Castle) Cine Wanderings (Southerndown, Elan Valley dams, St Fagans Castle)
Amateur film 1948 9 mins Silent Location: Southerndown
Wanderings amongst the rocks of Southerndown beach, around the dams of the Elan Valley and through the gardens of an Elizabethan mansion.
Home movie 1956 7 mins Silent Location: Llandovery/Llanymddyfri
From a cricket match in Llandovery to a love match at the Elan Valley Hotel, with shots of a dam and a hunting party thrown in.
Charity appeal 1939 10 mins
Long thought lost, this Powell-directed promotional short for a veteran’s charity was only rediscovered in 2003.
Drama 2023 2 mins
A group of young Black boys run into a building. One of them is about to do the unimaginable.
Romance 2023 2 mins
A queercore romance - a visceral and immersive exploration of the power of the mosh pit and finding love in the most unlikely of places.
Documentary 1941 6 mins
A poignant, stirring letter from a recently deceased pilot to his mother is read by John Gielgud.
Comedy 2023 2 mins
En-route to her hen weekend, bride-to-be Faye kills the vibe with a bombshell confession.
Documentary 2023 2 mins
An insight into Daytimers, the South Asian DJ collective that are breaking new ground in Britain.