Film ID: NEFA 13606 Video of 13606DoingOurBit1935 DOING OUR BIT 1935 Visitor TabsDescription An appeal film for assistance with a number of projects aimed at the unemployed and their families in the Middlesbrough and Cleveland areas. The film is introduced by Lord Zetland and features a visit to Middlesbrough by Prince George. The film then shows various work and recreational projects organised for the unemployed, which include an exhibition of crafts made by Cleveland unemployed; teaching of new crafts; building of greenhouses by the unemployed; training of boys as waiters; boxing matches and other entertainments; a local comedian, renovation and conversion of an old barn by the unemployed; and boys' camps. [Please note that the picture runs too fast but this was how the original film was produced.] Credit: The Cleveland Central Council of Social Service presents Title: Doing Our Bit Credit: Photography with the Compliments of Capt. Hewitson of the Volcanic Film Society. Middlesbrough. Credit: Commentary with the Compliments of B&N Films Limited. Recording with the Compliments of Cantophone Sound Services. Title: The Most Hon. The Marquis of Zetland P.C., G.C.S.I., G.C.I.E. The film opens with the Marquis of Zetland sitting at a desk. Talking directly to camera, he describes the efforts being made by voluntary organisations to cope with the “evils of unemployment” in the Middlesbrough and Cleveland areas. He continues to describe how the previous year the Postal Service League had found employment for six hundred unemployed locals, four hundred women, in domestic, hotel and farm services. The Marquis concludes by saying that the work being done to “rescue the victims of theses years of industrial depression” was more than charity, but a service to the country. Prince George gets out of a car and is escorted into a house belonging to the Middlesbrough Settlement. In the backyard the Prince is introduced by a woman to a line of men. They are all wearing war medals. The Prince exits the building onto the street and is greeted by a crowd, held back by police. The royal car drives away through a crowd of waving locals. At the Great Yorkshire Show crowds of people walk by stands for organisations such as 'Ransomes, Sims & Jefferies of Ipswich'. A crowd of people are standing beside a wooden garden seat beneath a sign that reads “Cleveland Unemployed”. In a forge, a group of men work with metal to build ornamental gates and other hand forged ironwork. A man takes a piece of ornamental gate from the forge and begins hammering it on an anvil. Outside two men hold up two large iron gates against a white cloth backdrop. The gate is inspected firstly by a well-dressed woman. Then by a man identified as Dr Stainsthorpe, Chairman of the Guisborough Council for Special Service. Three men hold up an iron weather vein, fire scrape and other iron workings. Three men are gardening next to a large greenhouse. Another man inside the greenhouse picks a fruit or vegetable. Outside a man picks flowers from a vine. Inside a wooden hut a group of men sit and smoke while another man sits at a piano. A group of twelve young men in suits are directed by a station porter out of St Pancras railway station in London. One of the young men, now in a waiters uniform, takes the order of a woman in a fur coat, identified as the honourable Mrs Bower. He then serves her food. Outside, the group of twelve men are all dressed in waiter’s uniforms. They bow and smile happily to the camera. In a boxing ring in a field between Cleveland House and the Branch school, Grangetown two young boys aged around ten huddle around an older man. The two boys fight as an audience of boys and men sit and watch. A group of men stand in the ring as one of them gives a speech to the crowd. There are scenes from a number of other boxing matches with older competitors. A man on crutches gives out paper slips to men in the crowd. A blacked up man described as “our local comedian” gets into the ring and performs a strange acrobatic display. He then takes part in a mock boxing match with one of the boxers seen earlier. Outside a stone building a group of men are painting window frames or making a new path. They break for a smoke. In a fenced yard they play a game of quoits on a pitch they built themselves. Lady Zetland walks with a man in a vicars collar and stands in the doorway of an old tithe barn. A group of men are standing against the barn wall. One man sands a wooden cabinet while another holds the spokes of a wooden wheel and another a wooden chair. Under a covered area of an old cinema a group of men in aprons make large vats of soup. A sign reads “Grangetown Council of Social Service”. The men work to keep the fire going and stir the soup. A group of young boys sit in a circle outside a large wooden hut singing. One of the boys is playing a mouth organ. Another plays an accordion. Three men garden on a hillside, identified as Heartbreak Hill. They lead a horse and cart full of hay into the field. A man smoking a pipe tends to some vegetables that are growing in a small walled enclosure. Two goats skip past beehives. Two men stand next to one of the hives. A coup with chickens stand in an enclosed area on the hill. The next sequence records activities at a boys camp. A group of excited boys carrying suitcases march, and then run up a hill. In the next shot, the boys are shirtless and washing themselves at tables laid out in front of the camp huts. A man rings a large bell outside the "cookhouse" hut. The boys enter the cookhouse and shortly after. The group of boys then rush into the dining hall shack where an older man in knickerbocker trousers is standing. Young boys with rolls of clothing or bedding walk are inspected by three camp leaders. Young men march in formation out of a field and through the camp. They perform a uniformed exercise routine in front of the huts, led by two men in shorts. The boys play leapfrog, followed by a vigorous game of tug-o-war. The film end with a number of boys doing the high jump followed by the long jump. Title: Lord Zetland, Cleveland House, Grangetown, Yorks. Title: Or there is a collection box outside the Cinema. Title: The End. Context 1930s work camps in the Cleveland Hills Digging a way out of the 1930s Depression in the Cleveland Hills. This is a fascinating and disturbing public appeal film on 1930s Depression era soup kitchens, communal work and youth camps in Middlesbrough and the Cleveland Hills, with regimes of unpaid labour and physical exercise (boxing, quoits and calisthenics). The ironstone miners’ work settlement on Heartbreak Hill near Boosbeck was set up by local Ormesby gentry, James and Ruth Pennyman, with assistance from folk revivalist and right-wing activist Rolf Gardiner. Despite the mismatched film speed and sound, and the local ‘blackface’ comedian, still a popular routine in the 1930s, this film has great contemporary resonance. In East Cleveland unemployment had hit a staggering 91 percent. The Cleveland Unemployed Miners Association scheme pictured was a politically ambiguous experiment, initiated by the militaristic Major James Pennyman and managed by Rolf Gardiner, who introduced international student groups to the camps. Their agenda was countered by the socialist, artistic ambitions of Ruth Pennyman. Left-wing composer Michael Tippett and Bauhaus-trained British artist and designer, Wilf Franks, were notable volunteers.