This film is part of Free

Thatching, the unchanging craft

Reknowned for the chocolate box image of quaint thatched cottages - there is always a need for experienced thatchers in East Anglia.

School programme and Educational film 1964 11 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for East Anglian Film Archive


The craft of thatching is the subject of this educational film following the full process from reed harvesting in the Cambridgeshire Fens through to the finished roof on a house in a nearby village. Whilst some of the tools may have changed slightly over the years, it is still a very specialised craft - passed on from father to son.

This film is the work of Hugh Brandon-Cox, artist, explorer and writer who spent much of his life in East Anglia, where he was inspired by the "wide skies". Whilst living in Cambridge working as a nature correspondent for a national magazine, he bought a 16mm cine camera and developed a talent for making films about nature and the environment. The commission for this film for the Educational Foundation for the Visual Arts followed on adding to his many successes and talents.