Film ID: NEFA 19876 Video of NEFA 19876 Visit to HM King and Queen to Gateshead COUNTY BOROUGH OF GATESHEAD VISIT OF THEIR MAJESTIES THE KING AND QUEEN 22 FEBRUARY 1939 1939 Visitor TabsDescription A promotional film made for the County Borough of Gateshead by Montagu Pictures of Newcastle of a visit to Gateshead by King George VI and Queen Elizabeth on Wednesday 22 February 1939. The film shows the royal couple arriving by train at Gateshead Station, visiting a children’s hospital in Gateshead before moving on to open the Northern Eastern Trading Estates at Team Valley. [Black and White] Title: County Borough of Gateshead. Visit of their Majesties the King and Queen. 22 February 1939. Title: Arrival at Gateshead Station. The film opens on various dignitaries standing on a railway platform. A steam train pulls into the platform; King George VI and Queen Elizabeth get off the train and meet the waiting guests. Title: Children’s Hospital at Gateshead. [Colour] The Mayor and Mayoress of Gateshead in gown and chains arrive at the hospital. A large crowd waves at the royal party arrives at the hospital by motorcade. The King and Queen get out of their car and walk into the building followed by other dignitaries. [Black and White, part of sequence out of focus] Inside the hospital a crowd of people clap as the King and Queen enter. They are introduced to members of the hospital staff. The camera pans across a ward showing children laying in their hospital beds; beside them stands a nurse. Several younger children sit up in metal cots watched over by a woman in a white uniform. The royal party are lead around the ward by a man in a suite. The Queen speaks with a young girl and picks up the book she is reading. The royal party leave the hospital by car. [Colour] A large sign reads 'North Eastern Trading Estate Ltd – Team Valley Estates'. The Mayor and Mayoress of Gateshead stand on a raise platform. A parade of soldiers stands to attention as the King and Queen get out of their car. The Queen is lead onto the platform to stand by a large white bow. She chats with the Mayoress of Gateshead while they wait for the King to climb onto the platform. The King and Queen are asked to pull one end of the white bow which doe not separate when pulled. The Queen chats with a man on a set of steps leading from the platform. A large crowd stand behind a barrier beside a covered red carpet. The royal party arrives by car. A number of policemen on horseback travel with the motorcade. The King and Queen walk along the covered red carpet towards a small factory unit. A woman uses a Singer sewing machine to sew a leather strip around the edge of a metal ARP helmet. The royal party come out of the factory unit. A crowd of onlooker behind a barrier smile are wave. The King and Queen come out of a building and get into a car. A crowd of women workers in light green uniforms cheer and wave. The King and Queen are driven away. They arrive outside another building, step out of the car onto a red carpet and proceed to walk inside. The film ends on a view of the North Eastern Trading Estate Ltd sign at the entrance to the estate followed by the royal standard flying from a mast. Title: The End Credit: Photographed & Production Arthur G. Greaves F.R.P.S. Assisted by Victoria Wilkinson, Sergt. S. Heathcote. Context On 22nd February 1939, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth formally opened the Team Valley Trading Estates in Gateshead. The royal couple spent three hours on site and unveiled a commemorative plaque at St Georges House, with a crowd of 500 watching the ceremony. In June 1937 the new king had been one of the visitors to the British Industrial Fair at Earl’s Court in London who had gazed at the industrial city of tomorrow contained in a 50ft² model of miniature factories, roads, railways, and gardens that made up the future Team Valley – billed as the finest trading estate in Europe. Team Valley was one of the best-known outcomes of the early Special Areas Act 1934, a palliative measure introduced first by Ramsay MacDonald’s Labour government, which encouraged the establishment of trading estates and light industries in areas hit hardest by the Depression of the 1930s. By 1934 unemployment ran at 57% in Gateshead, and nearby Jarrow suffered the collapse and closure of Palmers Shipbuilding, with workers forced back on the dole, a cyclical event in the volatile shipping industry. Prospects on Tyneside looked gloomy. In 1936 North Eastern Trading Estates was set up to build new business parks, with Tyneside entrepreneur Colonel K.C. Appleyard as chairman. Team Valley was selected as the first site. On October 2nd Professor William Graham Holford was appointed as Consulting Architect for the planning of the estate and factory designs, getting his way with everything from the concrete railway viaduct (now demolished) down to the details of lettering and variety of brick. No architect had subjected a British industrial estate to such strict design discipline before, and probably none has done so since. Adverts at the time compared a well-designed factory to a well-tailored suit. Team Valley, once an area of marsh, rubbish dumps, and smallholdings, was to be based on the modern urban planning of a suburb such as Welwyn Garden City, distinct from the ‘smog, roar, dust and fumes of the city’ and the contentious industrial landscapes of the north. Appleyard promoted Team Valley as a ‘modern miracle’ and ‘an ideal city within 700 acres of pasture land’. He reported that ‘the once winding river Team is straightened and controlled’ and that ‘nine pit heaps, those ugly landmarks of our district, have been demolished’. By July 1939 110 factories employing 3,700 people had opened in Team Valley. Amongst the original companies who are still at Team Valley were Hunters the Bakers, Primula Cheese (now Kavli) and De la Rue, which started life producing straw hats and playing cards almost two centuries ago, and now prints the banknotes for banks from Barbados to Belize (2015). This film was produced for Gateshead Council by Arthur G. Greaves ARPS who was chairman of Montagu Pictures, an amateur Newcastle film production unit, which won international and national awards. He also joined the committee of Tyneside Film Society. He won the Scottish Amateur Film Festival Victor Savill Cup for the most outstanding film with his film 'The Day Thou Gavest' in 1937. He was also an F.R.P.S. and a member of the Newcastle & District Amateur Cinematographers (ACA) cine club in the early days. The gifted amateurs working with Greaves also captured the dank and murky day of the event on black and white film, which we also hold in collections at NEFA. The Visit of Their Majesties King George VI and Queen Elizabeth to the Team Valley Trading Estate The Newcastle & District ACA has been making cine stories and capturing the north east on film for nearly a century. It is the sole survivor of the five original ACA organisations in Britain, first set up in 1927, and incredibly, the cine club celebrated its 90th anniversary in 2017. In 2014 a large collection of the club’s treasure trove of amateur movies arrived at North East Film Archive, dating back to 1928 with a unique film of the wildly festive crowd welcoming King George V and Queen Mary at the opening of Newcastle’s iconic New Tyne Bridge.