The Yorkshire Film Archive collects, preserves, and shows film made in, or about Yorkshire. Our collections are non-fiction, dating from the 1890s to the present day, and providing a rich and visually compelling record of all aspects of lives, cultures, landscape, industries, major events and everyday activities, many of which are available to watch, free of charge, on our website.
This film is part of Free
Romance of Leather
This document of the tannery industry in Beverley in the 1930s gives a vivid picture of leather making, with wonderful shots of this labour intensive and highly skilled trade.
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A beautifully filmed profile of tannery workers in their pre-war working clothing and factory environment, exhibiting the lost skills of producing leather in Beverley. Each stage of the labour intensive process, from raw material to finished goods, is reverently demonstrated at a genteel pace and explained by the narrator in the re-assuring tones, very John Betjamin like, typical of the period.
Local filmmakers Debenham’s & Co., as always, do a professional job of filming an industry which has a history in Beverley going back to medieval times. It isn’t known which company is featured in the film, but the largest at the time was Richard Hodgson and Sons Ltd in Flemingate, founded in 1812, which employed generations of Beverley families. The tanning industry was finally brought to an end in Beverley in 1986 with the closure of Melrose Tanners based in Keldgate. But leather still has its many uses, although a little less romance, and is still made just up the road from Beverley in Driffield.
Amateur film 1975 7 mins Silent Location: Beverley
An atmospheric film of a dry dock, the welding of the hull, primitively held by timber supports, before the ship plunges sideways into a river.
Historical Pageant Procession, Beverley through the Ages; July 10th 1 Historical Pageant Procession, Beverley through the Ages; July 10th 1
Documentary 1937 24 mins Silent Location: Beverley
An elaborate vision of Beverley, in Yorkshire's East Riding, from ancient times through to the 1930s.
Non-Fiction 1942 3 mins Silent Location: Beverley
New young recruits are seen here showing their colours at the height of the war, marching through the town of Beverley, preparing for the battles ahead.
Non-Fiction 1943 7 mins Silent Location: Beverley
A chance to judge the mood of a typical English town, four years into a deadlocked war, as we witness the bearing of service men and women marching through the streets of Chapeltown.
1941 4 mins Silent Location: Beverley
The Battle of Britain may be over but the war over the skies continues, and so the people of Beverly crowd the Market Square and dig deep to buy one of Britain’s greatest war assets.
Training film/TV programme 1942 10 mins Silent Location: Beverley
A fascinating glimpse into the training of the Home Guard –learning how to hide from enemy invaders – showing that they were far from being the farcical shambles of Dad’s Army.
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.