This film is part of Free
Wexford Railway Station (1902)
A flurry of activity at Wexford Railway Station as passengers alight an Edwardian steam train.
A beautiful shot of a locomotive billowing smoke begins this very evocative film. As the train pulls in to the Wexford terminus the camera is positioned behind the ticket barrier to record smartly-dressed passengers disembarking along the length of the platform. The final shot is taken from outside White's Hotel, where we know that Belgian-born cameraman Louis de Clercq stayed in Wexford.
In its subject but also in its composition, this film, like several others in the Mitchell and Kenyon collection, clearly evokes what is considered the very first cinematograph film, the Lumiere Brothers' L'Arrivée d'un train à la Ciotat (The Arrival of a Train, France, 1895). The train service was run by Dublin, Wicklow & Wexford Railway Company. Wexford Station opened in 1874 and still has a single platform. The largely well-to-do passengers seen here contrast sharply with the more humbly-dressed townspeople seen in another film shot by De Clercq during his Wexford visit, Life in Wexford. De Clerq's own diary tells us that he stayed in Wexford on 18 and 19 January 1902. The images in both Wexford films attest to the truth in his complaint about the 'very poor light' for filming. De Clercq ultimately chose to stay in Ireland, working for a new filmmaking venture set up by journalist and printer James T. Jameson.