This film is part of Free

The Building and Launch of the Mocamedes

On the waterfront at Sunderland's Bartram & Sons with the men and boys who build ships.

Industry sponsored film 1947 28 mins Silent

From the collection of:

Logo for North East Film Archive


The men who gave their lives to shipbuilding jostle with bold apprentices who look to a bright post-war future at Bartram & Sons in Sunderland. This beautiful industrial film and workers' portrait details the stages in construction and launch of the Mocamedes in 1946, and lingers over the interior design of cabins. It also captures a human side to this proud shipyard on Wearside.

A lifetime of work has weathered the faces of veteran shipbuilders pictured in this first industrial film commission for Newcastle firm, Turners. Bartram & Sons had endured tough times, closing in the Depression-era years when ‘rabbits were frolicking unmolested in the yard’. But during World War Two, this Sunderland yard had its most productive years. Robert Bartram, one of the last Sunderland family shipbuilders, remained in charge of Bartram’s from 1922 until the yard was bought by Austin and Pickersgill in November 1968, finally closing in 1978.