This film is part of Free

Village and Country Scenes 1934-1938

Pretty 1930s scenes of Essex and Suffolk villages and countryside

Amateur film 1934 6 mins Silent

From the collection of:

Logo for East Anglian Film Archive


With an eye for the timeless and pictureque, Alec Paull of Colchester filmed these 1930s scenes on his travels by bike around Essex and the Suffolk border. The few cars, bikes and buses appear amongst snow-covered homes and gardens, and leafy country lanes where lambs and ponies graze amongst the spring blossom. Scenes of the topiary at Bridge End Garden, ancient houses at Kersey and Thaxted, and the river through Dedham Vale, 'Constable Country'.

Alec Paull lived in Colchester, Essex where his parents ran two bicycle shops. His film captures Bridge End Garden in Saffron Walden which fell into neglect in later years. Created in the 1840s, the garden is designed as a series of 'rooms' with different style and function, with raised platforms for visitors to look over the topiary gardens. This Victorian garden, now owned by the Town Council, has been restored during a project completed 2008, so once more visitors can lose themselves in the maze.