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Union Castle liner and seaside scenes

All aboard the Warwick Castle as she departs from Southampton in this jolly film from Mr Light which also features beach goers playing leapfrog

Amateur film 1930 6 mins Silent

From the collection of:

Logo for Wessex Film and Sound Archive


Mr Light's remarkable film starts with scenes by a railway line in Hampshire and dogs out for a walk with their owners. Then we see two women board the Union Castle liner, Warwick Castle, at Southampton. After much waving the liner moves away from the quay and sets sail for Cape Town. We then move to, possibly, Hayling Island, where a group of friends frolic on the beach - enjoying a game of leapfrog, which is later filmed in slow-motion. The film ends at a pub and an outdoor meal.

The Union Castle liner, Warwick Castle, seen in this film departing for Cape Town, made her maiden voyage on the 30th of January 1930. Union Castle operated a weekly mail run on the Southampton to Cape Town route and this service lasted until September 1977. Unfortunately, on the 14th November 1942, Warwick Castle, now converted to a troopship, was torpedoed and sunk by U413 about 200 miles off Cape Espichel, Portugal. Of the 462 people onboard, 96 were drowned. It is interesting to speculate whether or not the passengers seen climbing the open gangway onto the ship were travelling in Tourist Class, as the adjacent covered gangway looks like it might have been reserved for First Class passengers only.