Film ID:
NEFA 14584



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This early actuality film of local topical news items features highlights from the Berwick Infirmary Cup football final between Eyemouth Rangers and Belford, played at the Stanks on June 29th 1929, and scenes from the Berwick May Fair in 1928. The film also includes an evocative 'phantom ride' through Walkergate Lane, a back street in a poor area of Berwick, during May Fair celebrations. In the final scene, fish merchants gather at an auction on the Berwick quayside, including a member of the Holmes family, fish merchants in Berwick since the 1800s. The film of the Berwick Infirmary Cup was due to be screened that same week at the Berwick Playhouse.

Title: Berwick Infirmary Cup Final 1929

The Eyemouth Rangers team of football players line up in front of the goal for a group portrait. Crowds stand behind the goalpost net. The players move forward towards and past the camera. The opposing team, Belford, then poses in front of the goal. Schoolboys follow the team as they move forwards and past the camera. Many schoolboys in uniform are in the crowd behind the net.

The toss of the coin takes place on the pitch, several small schoolboys loitering close by the players.

The match is in progress. In the background, crowds of spectators are standing beside the Elizabethan walls and sitting on high embankments that surround the pitch. Dust rises from the dry pitch as the men play. A goalkeeper takes a goal kick.

There is a close shot of a section of the crowd. The men and women all wear hats. Some men shout out, other spectators are smiling. One man raises his hat to camera. The camera pans across other sections of the crowd.

The film returns to the match in progress, the high infirmary walls in the background and several soldiers in uniform in the crowd at the edge of the shot. There are shots of the action taken from behind a goal. High angle views of the match follow.

A close up of a section of the standing crowd records two mothers in cloche hats, with small children and prams. There are a number of soldiers in uniform to the rear of the women. One woman spectator turns and chats to a soldier.

The film returns to ground level shots of the football match, with a goal kick, penalty and goal scored by Eyemouth rangers striker. A close up of the crowd cheering jubilantly follows.

A man in suit and hat poses with a winner’s cup, possibly Councillor W. J. Dixon, the donor of the cup.

Title: Snapshots in Berwick 1928

Title: The Opening of the Fair. His Lordship the Mayor, Councillor Harry Stuart and Corporation

The Mayor in ceremonial robes with councillors and other dignitaries, many in top hats, descend the steps at Berwick Town Hall on Marygate. Three police officers are positioned at the bottom of the steps. A band of uniformed police form an honorary guard, heading the procession of Mayor and civic dignitaries along Marygate. A backward tracking shot records the march through the Berwick streets. The street is crowded with people, and groups of small children walk and run with the procession. Fair stalls appear beside the road in the background. The children, along with other spectators in the crowd, look towards the camera.

Title: Loyal burgesses, etc:
There are extended tracking shots along the spectators lining the road for the procession, that provide portraits of the cross section of people in the crowds, some posing, smiling or glaring at the camera. Various shops along Berwick High Street stand to the rear of the spectators. Shot from behind spectators, the police honour guard lead the Mayor, mace bearer and assorted dignitaries down a narrow street between the crowd and a stone building.

The next film sequence consists of a forward travelling shot, known as a 'phantom ride,' down the narrow cobbled streets of Marygate and Walkergate Lane towards Wallace Green Church. Local men, women and children are strolling, standing on doorsteps, and gathered in small groups along Walkergate Lane. Two young boys run along the street and face the camera to get in shot. A young mother runs onto the road, lifts up her small son to the camera, determined to be in shot. Pedestrians in the street give way.

Title: The Merry “Merry-go-rounders”

Children and adults enjoy themselves on a merry-go-round of racing motor cars and rodeo horses set up at Berwick May Fair on the Parade. The ride moves faster and faster. A group of people watch the ride and some of the men wave and mug for the camera, one man comically tying a ribbon he is handed into a noose around his neck. The camera pans across to the small crowd watching from the opposite side of the merry-go-round.

Title: Peeps at the Fish Quay

A group of men, women and children attend an auction of fish on Berwick upon Tweed quayside. Boxes of fish stand on the floor. Workers in aprons stand with the crowd. Berwick Old Bridge and Royal Border Bridge stand in the background. In the foreground, a man in sailor’s hat talks to a vicar, who removes his hat on seeing the camera. His companion then removes his hat. Group portrait shots of the crowd. Close-up of the auctioneer taking bids, surrounded by a crowd of men who smile towards camera. One of the men selling fish will be a member of the Holmes family, a long standing fish merchants business in Berwick.