This film is part of Free

Review 26th Year No. 3

A makeover in Batley, a super-dock in Immingham - and 70s kitsch abounds.

Cinemagazine 1972 10 mins


Batley is the star of lead item 'The Solway Site', about a local spot's makeover following intensive opencast mining there. Then it's toys-for-boys time as 'Mining on Show' visits an exhibition of mega-mining equipment at London's Olympia centre. Finally, 'Project Immingham' explores said Humberside cargo terminal, closing this issue of the National Coal Board's newsreel with a little cinematic flourish.

In its 26th Year, Mining Review was renamed simply Review. This was the third issue released under the new branding, which coincided with the NCB Film Unit entering a period of gradual decline. The coverage of the building and operations of Immingham's 'super dock' (filmed at skewed angles and edited with pep), has a certain grandeur. But all three stories have their share of 1970s kitsch: the opening bars of music for the first item suggest what follows might be a Blaxploitation thriller rather than a report on local land reclamation... Incidentally the NCB Unit produced longer versions of the Olympia and Immingham items for release as stand-alone 16mm films. Both stories are windows on a long-lost world where UK energy policy is concerned: a world in which Britain exported both mining technology and coal itself. Look upon such works, ye mighty, and despair: coal now comes into the UK via Immingham, rather than out of it...