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The Visit of Their Majesties King George VI and Queen Elizabeth to John Barran’s Factory

In this fascinating film, made just over 6 months before the start of World War 2, George VI inspects a military uniform factory in Leeds.

Sponsored film 1939 4 mins Silent

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Logo for Yorkshire Film Archive


This film records the visit of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth to John Barran and Sons clothing manufacturers in Leeds. At the start of the film, we see the King and Queen touring the factory floor and inspecting the textiles. At the end of the film, the Queen signs a visitor’s book, shortly before the royals exit frame.

This film was made by Turners of Newcastle, a company that made over 2,000 films during its long existence (1930s-1990s). Sir John Barran (1821-1905) was a well-known clothing manufacturer and politician. John Barran and Sons were tasked with making large amounts of military uniforms for British service personnel during the war years. King George VI (1895-1952) ruled the United Kingdom from 1936-1952. His daughter, Elizabeth II, succeeded him after his death. George VI’s Queen consort, Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon (1900-2002), survived her husband by 50 years.