This film is part of Free

River Tees

The River Tees inspires poets and artists in a fascinating 1960s television travelogue.

Documentary 1962 42 mins

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For charismatic presenter Mike Neville the River Tees flows through a landscape of extraordinary beauty, with its awesome combination of rural idyll and industrial heartlands. This poetic 1960s television travelogue with powerful images captures the wild romance of the Tees that inspired poet Walter Scott and paintings by Turner, but also depicts the boundless ICI chemical works and Paton and Baldwins extraordinarily vast woollen factory at Darlington.

Between 1962 and 1963 Tyne Tees Television broadcast superb documentaries on the rivers and coastline of the North East in a series called Your Heritage. This programme was the final part of a trilogy on the regional rivers, beautifully scripted by Phil McDonnell. All you need for all you knit! declared an advertisement during the 1950s heyday of Patons and Baldwins. In December 1947 woollen manufacture on an extraordinary scale started at a site on Lingfield Lane in Darlington, with a factory floor finally covering 1.7 million square feet. In 1949 the modern P&B woollen mills were hailed by the News Chronicle daily as a wonder factory and by the Evening Despatch as the largest in the Empire.