This film is part of Free

Turn Out of the Keighley Fire Brigade (1902)

Turn Out of the Keighley Fire Brigade (1902)

Their brass helmets gleaming, Edwardian firefighters in the West Yorkshire town demonstrate aspects of their job.

Non-Fiction 1902 4 mins Silent

Overview

Much of this film takes place in a railway sidings with no fire in sight, suggesting a practice drill - although this has the advantage (from the filmmakers' point of view) of allowing a very clear visual presentation of the various stages in the firemen's work. The second part shows the rescue of victims from a building's second floor via a canvas escape chute, down which they slide head first.

Horse-drawn fire engines such as the ones depicted here would remain in operation for just a few more years - the advantages of new motorised transport were particularly obvious in a field where speed was of the essence.