Film ID:
NEFA 21134

CARNIVAL PARADE IN SOUTH SHIELDS; BERTRAM MILLS CIRCUS PARADE; YOUTH PARADE; SHIPWRECK, ADELFOTIS II; TOWN MOOR FAIR; BLAYDON RACES

1959-1963

Visitor Tabs

Description

This home movie is a compilation of a number events in and around South Shields, a day out at the 'Hoppings' fair on Newcastle's Town Moor, the Blaydon Races Centenary celebration in 1962, including the parade, a trip to Whitby and a North Yorkshire fox hunt. The touring Bertram Mills Circus parades through South Shields and there's a large Sunday Schools' gathering in South Shields town centre. A cargo ship, the Adelfotis II, is shipwrecked on Herd Sands, South Shields in January 1963.

The film opens with general views of spectacular flower beds, including colourful tulips and daffodils, in a public park [possibly South or North Marine Park in South Shields]. A small toddler poses for the camera next to a pink and white display of flowers. A solitary swan glides by on a lake.

Next, carnival floats show off their displays on the streets of South Shields. One of the first is of a carnival queen riding on a Bedford flatbed truck. The next float follows a sci-fi theme where a man in a space suit rides on a silver rocket. The next float shows a group of 'school girls' in St Trinian's garb riding, incongruously, in a truck marked 'Sand and Gravel Merchants'. Two women in Chinese costume smile at the crowds from a float featuring the head of a dragon. Next a drum majorette in Scottish costume twirls a mace at the head of a marching group of girls in a juvenile jazz band, all similarly dressed. Another parade float passes by in the parade carrying small children dressed in bonnets. One of them shakes a 'Spastic Children' collection tin. Another majorette dressed in white leads a juvenile jazz band. A small truck transports some older women with collection tins. Next, there's a convoy of motor scooters. A notice on the front of one of the machines reads 'The Coasters - South Shields Lambretta Club'. A lorry behind the main convoy has a notice over it's radiator grill '500,000 Accident Free Miles'. On the back of the lorry a display promotes 'the Coasters' club. More shots of scooters and various floats follow.

Bertram Mills Circus parades through the streets of South Shields. Near the head of the parade a 'Sultan' and his assistant lead a donkey. Immediately behind can be seen a large 'cannon', perhaps for a human cannonball act. A group of large cartoon-like heads march past. Next, elephants appear on the suburban streets lead by their handlers. Behind them a truck carries performing dogs. A parade of horses dressed in decorative plumes goes by, followed by what appears to be a wild west show with small ponies, led by girls in Western style costumes. The parade continues with a cage of tigers, more elephants, then a float with a man balancing on a very tall step ladder. He waves to the crowds and in the process nearly falls off the ladder. A couple in Spanish, or traditional Mexican, costume continue the parade, followed by more elephants and their handlers.

The next sequence is of a church parade, which pauses at a street corner carrying at it's head a large banner. The parade is a gathering of Sunday School children, parents and organisers, all dressed in their Sunday best. This is most likely the Good Friday Procession of Witness. The parade starts and they turn the corner into another street. A travelling shot records large crowds entering the market place in South Shields. The parade features Brownies, a Salvation Army brass band, a Boys Brigade[?] band, a Girl Guides troop, some older Brownies and other participants carrying Sunday School banners. There are shots of parents and children walking hand in hand. A huge gathering takes place in the market square around the Town Hall. The crowds listen to speakers delivering their speeches from the steps of the old town hall. Further shots follow of parading groups in the main town centre [possibly King Street, South Shields]. One of the Sunday School groups holds aloft their banner which reads 'Baring Street Primitive Methodist Sunday School'. General views of the crowds in the street, most smartly dressed.

In another street in South Shields a parade includes Girl Guides[?], the Boys Brigade[?] and sea cadets[?] or sea scouts[?]. The various groups gather in the market square. Girls in dark uniform [Royal Navy?], one carrying a Union Jack, march between the lines of parade participants. General views then follow of the various groups leaving the market square.

The film cuts to shots of rough seas. A ship is stranded on Herd Sands, South Shields. Three men on the rocks nearby pull on a rope connected to the ship. The sea buffets the ship, gigantic waves breaking over its hulk. Men carry coils of rope in boxes to the rocks near the ship. A closer view follows of the ship battered by gales, then a burst of sunshine gives a clearer view. Crowds gather to look at the shipwreck on the beach. More shots follow of violent seas, a shot of the bow section shows the ship's name, Adelfotis II. Various shots follow of the ship. Two women stop to look at the stranded ship from the beach.

Title: Town Moor Fair

This section of the film compilation begins with a little girl in a bonnet playing with a small rag doll. A boxer warms up by hitting a punch ball outside a boxing booth at the Hoppings. The film cuts to views of a ferris wheel and roundabout. General views follow of side show attractions including one advertising the 'World's Ugliest Woman'. A roundabout has small boats for the individual passengers. Other rides include an undulating walkway, where those who want to test there balance and ability to stay upright can enjoy the challenge, a centrifuge ride, where people are pressed against the inside of a cage as it rotates at speed. The film cuts to a shot of a classic Chair O' Plane ride.

Title: Blaydon Races. 'We went to Blaydon Races 'twas on the 9th of June, eighteen hundred and sixty two on a summer's afternoon'

A police car leads a band from the Coldstream Guards along the road. Immediately in front, two policemen ride on horseback, followed by Royal Navy personnel, then the army. Next a display of horse drawn carriages, followed by more floats including Balmbra's can-can girls, a parade of veteran cars and a novelty float where a 'jockey' appears to be riding a giant Newcastle Exhibition bottle. A man in a gorilla costume taunts the crowds. More colourful floats go past followed by a military band, a highland pipe band. then a group of sea cadets[?]. More floats pass by including one with women in Victorian costume, one advertising 'Sunblest' bread. A brass band follows, then a horse drawn float advertising the fact that 'Guinness is good for you'. Next in the parade, small horse drawn traps and decorated pit ponies go by. Older women in Victorian costume stand on another float: one holds a hand written notice which reads; 'Old Granny Hardy - The Midwife'. A troop of Morris Men dance on the back of a flat bed truck labeled 'Festival Folk Dancers'. The next float has a more modern form of dancing, the Twist, and another float pronounces 'The Blaydon Belles Bring Back the Bell'.

The next section opens with a travelling shot taken from a train as it pulls into Whitby station. A boat sails into the harbour. A man onshore throws a rope to it. Another fisherman mends a lobster pot on one of the boats. On another boat men sort a haul of crabs. Crates of crabs are unloaded from a boat by a small crane onto the quayside.

The film cuts to a shot of Whitby's rooftops and also shots of the famous 199 steps leading to the abbey. General views follow of the swing bridge and the estuary of the river Esk. General views follow of fishing boats in the harbour, the East Cliff showing St Mary's church and the abbey, and boats marooned on mud flats waiting for the next tide.

The next section shows the gathering of a fox hunt in Goathland, North Yorkshire. Hunters and hounds gather on a green. A thin layer of snow covers buildings. Villagers gather outside the Goathland Hotel to watch the event. A woman chats with one of the huntsmen on his horse while the pack of hounds mills around nearby. A child poses for a photograph next to one of the mounted huntsmen. Crowds mingle amongst the horses and hounds. The hunt starts to move off down a narrow road. The film cuts to a shot of the hunt out on the moors near Fylingdales early warning station, the classic 'golf ball' constructions clearly seen on the horizon. A close-up follows of members of the hunt as they make their way across the moor. The riders head down a narrow moorland road. The hunt leaves the road and continues over the moor.

The film cuts to a shot of Whitby Abbey, panning right to left taking in the full grandeur of the building. A shot through an archway shows St Mary's Church in the distance. Further shots record the arches and pillars which support the whole structure.