This film is part of Free

Simply Metric

Wouldn't budge an inch for a centimetre? This guide to the new-fangled system of metrication may change your mind.

Public Information Filler 1973 14 mins


Oh the joy of 10! Hot on the heels of sterling's decimalisation in 1971, this short information film from 1973 uses its powers of persuasion– and some help from an animated amoeba – to explain the benefits of metrication to a reluctant British public. Everyday situations – from a couple buying new carpets for their new home to sport and travel – show how easy and unthreateningly familiar metric measures can be.

Despite numerous attempts since the making of this film to persuade the British public to adopt European style weights and measures, full metrication has never been universally achieved. British pubs continue to serve their beer in pints, while petrol is always sold in litres; at the supermarket, milk can be purchased in either imperial or metric measures. This government film is a public record, preserved and presented by the BFI National Archive on behalf of The National Archives, home to more than 1,000 years of British history.