This film is part of Free

Stock Car Racing at Neath Abbey Stadium

The ruins of Neath Abbey overlook races that include fire, floodlights and pile-ups. Safer by far are the dodgems and the pedalo which follow.

Amateur film 1954 6 mins Silent

From the collection of:

Logo for National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales


Extensive footage of stock car racing, shot by a Neath plumber. The picture on the title card – a woman holding chrysanthemums to her face – obviously not indicative of the content but a good example of how women are used as decorative additions to male sporting events! Two boxers are present at the races: wholesome Dai Dower, in camel coat, who shakes the hand of a winning driver, and Freddie Mills, in mackintosh with cigarette, who looks every inch the gangster he became.

David William Dower (1933-2016) was a miner from Abercynon [see the 1955 British Paramount News item ‘Dai Dower Takes Mining Course’, held by NSSAW]. He boxed for Britain in the 1952 Summer Olympics and became British and British Empire Flyweight Champion in 1954, and European Flyweight Champion in 1955. He fought for but failed to win a world title in 1957. He made a post-boxing life for himself in Freddie Mills’ old stamping ground, Bournemouth, teaching sport at a school and the university there. Frederick Percival Mills (1919-1965) worked as a milkman in his home town before becoming World Light Heavyweight Champion 1948-50. His post-boxing life included film acting and nightclub ownership in London.