This film is part of Free

Peace Celebrations at Haslingden July 19th 1919

Charming, fun and heartwarming portrait of a Lancashire town coming together to celebrate Peace Day.

Non-Fiction 1919 13 mins Silent


Across Britain the country came together to celebrate Peace Day, but few portraits of the events could be as charming as this one, filmed in the Lancashire town of Haslingden. From the delightful giggle fits during the opening titles to the exhausted infant at the end, there's an unpolished and playful quality to the way these scenes were filmed that lets them reach across the years.

Eight months after the armistice and three weeks after the Treaty of Versailles was signed, the decision to co-ordinate a day to celebrate peace was not without its critics. As the Cenotaph (or a temporary version of it) was unveiled in London, elsewhere there were riots and protests about the lack of opportunities and help for returning soldiers. If that sentiment was felt in Haslingden, it's not apparent here, as the citizens pose and perform for a cameraman with a playful spirit. Look out for the backwards scenes and an appearance, of sorts, of Charlie Chaplin.