Film ID:
YFA 982

CLARION RAMBLERS

1945-1954

Visitor Tabs

Description

A film documenting the Sheffield Clarion Ramblers on their walks between 1945 and 1954, mostly in the nearby Peak District.  Among the many events seen in the film are ramblers helping to rescue sheep during the winter of 1947, the ceremony for handing over the deeds of the pathway to the summit of Lose Hill in 1945 to G.H.B Ward, who also make several speeches at other walks.  There are also excerpts from the Clarion Ramblers journal and well dressing in Youlgreave.

Title - Huntingtower Films presents (with a picture of the Huntingtower at Chatsworth House)
Derbyshire and the Clarion Ramblers
Birchfield 1947

In heavy snow a woman emerges from a gate and four people, two men and two women, walk jauntily arm in arm along a path in a snow covered park, with a woman running to catch up behind. The woman knocks on the door of a large building and several people emerge to look at the camera.

Intertitle - Winter Sports

On top of a snowy hill, a man gingerly goes down on skies, at first falling over. Other skiers follow.

Intertitle - Ramblers lend a hand

A group of people walk through a path with snow piled eight feet high on either side. A group of ramblers are walking through snow covered fields to a house covered in icicles. They carry on walking through the snow, dipping their walking sticks into the sbnow to find buried sheep, at one point digging out a sheep trapped in deep snow and lifting it clear. They try to revive the sheep, and eventually carry it off and put it with the rest of the sheep, clear of the heavy snow.

Intertitle - On the slopes of Win Hill

A tractor is pulling a machine that is gathering up the cut harvest of wheat and making them into bales. A man behind places then onto a wooden platform, and these are then are discharged onto the ground once they are full. A boy is following from behind.

Intertitle - Burbage

An elderly man dressed in old walking clothes is out walking on the moors with a walking stick. Three other people, not in walking clothing, look out onto the moors and a stream, flowing down onto a river and a waterfall, towards Stanage Edge.

Intertitle - Gliding at Hucklow

Some people are attaching wings and other parts onto a glider, called 'Jacob's Ladder'. The glider is pushed into position and a man standing on a truck waves it off with semaphore signals using round boards. The glider is catapulted into the air and is then shown landing.

Intertitle - Ilam Hall YHA

Ilam Hall YHA is shown across a field, and then a plaque commemorating the Cross Shaft, which is shown in close up.

Intertitle - Thorpe Cloud Station

A train pulled by a steam engine pulls out of Thorpe Cloud Station and there is a view over the village of Thorpe located in Derbyshire. Two pages are shown of 'The Rambler's Association Rest House Directory and Bus Guide' from 1954, with an advert for 'Black's' at Greenock. Someone turns the page to show a list of accommodation. A group of people arrive at Green Farm in Thorpe.

Intertitle - Thorpe Cloud

The countryside around Thorpe Cloud is shown.

Intertitle - Dovedale

A valley in Dovedale is shown from on high, and then two boys skipping over some stones that cross a river before another steep valley is shown. A group of walkers are resting on some rocks, and two women cross a wooden footbridge over a river. A woman looks into the entrance of a large cave and continues walking along a path next to a river. She is joined by a man with a walking stick. They stop and rest by the side of the river. Cows graze beside the river, and some people cross an old stone footbridge. A man stops next to the river to put on his socks. The group walk over through a village. There is a close up of the Sheffield Clarion Ramblers booklet for 1954-5, price 2/-. Someone turns the pages to show the entries for August and September of 1954.

A group of walkers with backpacks gather at a Sheffield Midland Railway Station. A train pulls away (pulled by steam loco 44964), with some ramblers in shorts running down the stairs after it. People look out of the windows as it pulls away. The countryside is shown from the train as it speeds along. The train arrives at a station and all the ramblers get off. They all gather together at a location in the countryside. Three of them set off down a hill. They examine some markings on a stone.

Intertitle - Despite vigilance by C.P.R.E. and others - this occurs

A group of people are outside a building and a factory with a smoking chimney is shown down in a valley. There is a motorcycle scrambling race, with the bikers crossing streams on their bikes.

Intertitle - Weekly collection for footpath preservation

A man collects money in his cap from a large group of ramblers sat on a hillside.

Intertitle - Pioneers' Reminiscences

An elderly man gives a talk to the ramblers sat on the grass.

Intertitle - Jack Jordan one of the foundation members

Another elderly man gives a talk to the ramblers. There is a close up of a 'Clarion Ramblers' booklet, price 1/-4 with someone pointing out one of the entries. A man and a woman head up a hillside path, and the first speaker chats to a group of ramblers. The plaque for 'Lost Hill' is shown close up.

Intertitle - Mrs Wells, an old stalwart, leads the ramble

Mrs Wells leads the ramblers, including some children, up a hill.

Intertitle - The presentation of the summit of Lose Hill to G.H.B. Ward . . . Ward's Piece, handed over by him to the nation for ever.

A man makes a speech to the assembled crowd of walkers through a microphone, followed by another speaker. The camera pans across the large group, seated and standing. The first speaker returns to the microphone and reads from some sheets of paper and punches his arm into the air before finishing. Everyone applauds. Another man makes a speech.

Intertitle - View finder presented by Harry Bragg

Two men are shown together. The film switches to another two men on top of a hill looking over a map of the area inscribed on a circular stone built platform, with one of them indicating where an arrow points to.

Intertitle - Cave Dale Rally 1946, speaker Hugh Dalton

Across a narrow valley a very large group of ramblers sit on the grass whilst a man makes a speech from a microphone. Again, the camera pans around to show the many people gathered. Behind the speaker a flag pole has the Union Jack flying above it. There are other speakers. The front cover of 'Sheffield Clarion Ramblers' is shown from 1950-51, Jubilee Issue, price 2/-, again showing some of the entries, from August and September, 1950.

Intertitle - Padley Chapel

A group of ramblers are assembled by some old buildings, with one of them giving a talk. They make their way down a country lane.

Intertitle - At the Barrel Inn

On a wet and blustery day, the walkers are congregated outside a building and walk down to a derelict farm house. One of them poses for the camera. He then makes another speech and they again head off along a footpath down a hill.

Intertitle - Evening Lose Hill

The walkers clamber over a wall and walk across a Lose Hill. Some of them stand or sit on a rock at the top. Two women start off on their own before returning. They sit on the grass looking down on the valley below. A boy has a drink out of a bottle. They cross over an old stone footbridge across a stream and settle on the other side where there are more speeches using a loudspeaker system. The speakers include a woman walker, who receives applause, followed by a male speaker.

Intertitle - Derbyshire, home of well dressing. Well dressing, a thank offering for water from them. Tissington and Youlgreave - two villages famous for the art. Visitors come from near and far.

People are gathered on a railway platform and board a train for Tissington. They disembark on arrival, and some of the local big houses are shown. They walk through the village and admire the wells. There is a street sign showing Youlgreave 2 1/2 miles, Winster and Ashbourne on the A524, with 'well Dressing' beneath it. Another similar sign is shown.

Intertitle - Youlgreave

Two women are walking along the street away from the church at Youlgreave. More parts of the village are shown.

Intertitle - The village schoolmaster Mr Lees responsible for much good work

Mr Lees enters the school.

Intertitle - The Subject 1954

A close up of a well is shown depicting a Biblical scene.

Intertitle - In out buildings such as these, parties of workers . . .

A group of people enter an old dilapidated outbuilding, and pose for the camera outside.

Intertitle - . . . Press flowers and flower petals into clay to form the pictures . . .

A man is pressing flowers onto a well dressing, with a watching crowd and helped by some children. Two children carry bouquets, and a well dressing sign is shown.

Intertitle - . . . Sometimes working all night to be ready for the blessing.

A well dressing sign is being made. Outside a Salvation Army band leads an ecclesiastical parade, followed by children, watched by a crowd lining the streets. They stop by a well dressing and the band play before there is a service performed in the street. The parade then goes off again and stops at another well to perform another service.

Intertitle - the beauty of the colours

Several well dressings are shown depicting various New Testament stories. Some women are drinking tea, and people are milling around.

The End

Background

Brief notes in Sheffield Local Studies Library suggest that the film was made by an unnamed member of the Clarion Ramblers

Sheffield Clarion Ramblers was founded in 1900 when G.H.B. Ward led a group of 14 on a ramble around the Kinder Scout Plateau. Jack Jordan, also seen in the film, was another of the founding members. The Clarion Ramblers became one of the leading clubs in the area and the Clarion Handbooks, edited by Ward, are invaluable sources of information. G.H.B. Ward (1876-1957) was a leading campaigner for the rambling movement and in addition to the Clarion Ramblers he also founded the Hallamshire Footpath Preservation Society and the Sheffield Ramblers' Federation and was instrumental in the formation of the Sheffield Association for the Protection of Local Scenery (later the Sheffield and Peak District Branch of the C.P.R.E.)

Birchfield, Hope was built for Edward Firth. In the 1920s it was let as the Win Hill Holiday Home and it was sold as a hotel in 1932. By the Second World War it had become a hostel for the Workers' Travel Association and from the 1950s until 1981 it was owned by the Wood Street Mission, Manchester.

Gliding - Camphill Farm near Great Hucklow has been the home of the Derbyshire and Lancashire Gliding Club since 1935. Gliders were originally launched by volunteers running down the hill with ropes but they were later launched by winch

Ilam Hall - most of the Hall was demolished in the 1920s before Sir Robert McDougall bought the estate and donated it to the National Trust in 1934. Since then the remaining part of the Hall has been used as a youth hostel and the grounds have been open to the public

Thorpe Cloud Station was on the LNWR line from Ashbourne to Buxton. The line catered for ramblers and tourists with special excursions and although it closed for passengers on 1 November 1954 the ramblers' specials and excursions continued until 1963.

Lose Hill - 54.5 acres were bought by the Sheffield & District Federation of the Ramblers' Association in appreciation of G.H.B. Ward's lifelong service to rambling. 'Ward's Piece' was presented to Ward in a ceremony at the summit of Lose Hill on 8 April 1945 and the deeds were then passed by him to the National Trust.

The Lose Hill view finder was financed by Harry Bragg and opened on 29 August 1948 by the Lord Mayor of Sheffield, Alderman W. E. Yorke.

Cave Dale - ramblers from Sheffield and Manchester met for their 20th annual rally on Sunday, 30 June 1946

John Jordan - known as Jack - was one of the fourteen men and women who answered the clarion call from G.H.B. Ward, a twenty-two-year-old engineering fitter from Sheffield, to join him on a ramble around Kinder Scout on Sunday 2 September 1900 - the day which was to see the formation of the legendary Sheffield Clarion Ramblers' Club.