London’s Screen Archives enables Londoners see their past come alive on film. Managed by Film London, we are a unique network of historic film collections that cares for, collects and screens heritage film across the city. Together we preserve London’s rich film heritage from feature films to home movies, public information films, newsreels, and records of the capital’s many different industries.
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Watts Family Films: Karen’s Christening, Epsom (1973)
Much champagne is spilled as the Watts family celebrate the christening of baby Karen with a large family gathering.
From the collection of:
Lovely film of a family party in 1973, celebrating the christening of baby Karen. The christening takes place at St Joseph’s Catholic Church in Epsom, but then cuts to the Watts family home nearby in Hookfield. There is lots of bottle opening – one has a thin neck several feet long - and snacks include vine leaves, reflecting a multicultural gathering. Wonderful also to compare the older people in suits with the younger generation’s bright clothes and long hair.
The family party is a delightful watch, featuring lots of laughter, cake, champagne and gesticulating. Many of the guests were born in Egypt of Maltese heritage – Daisy Watts, the baby’s mother, was born in Alexandria – and this would have been a multicultural occasion, with conversations in Italian but peppered with French, Arabic, Greek and occasionally English if the vocabulary was desired. The film was shot by Salvo Camenzuli, Daisy’s father.