ELLAND CARNIVALS OF YESTER YEARS (1926-1927) film no: 981
This is a film of the Elland Carnivals in summer 1926 and 1927. It was made by BFL Films for an “exclusive release” to be screened at the local cinema following the event, hoping to draw in crowds who couldn’t wait to see their big moment on the silver screen.
Titles: 'This film has been passed by the British Board of Film Censors U Cert.' 'An exclusive film release' 'BFL Elland Carnival of Yester Years (U) CERT' 'Elland St John Ambulance Brigade and the Men's Own Brotherhood - Demonstration and Carnival Saturday, July 19th 1926'
The film begins showing a banner draped across Elland Town Hall, proclaiming 'Success to Our Carnival.' Other bunting also decorates the streets. The Town Hall is surrounded with people, many looking at the camera as it moves along the crowds. Many of the children have fancy hats on. One person talks with a man in uniform, possibly from the St John Ambulance. A horse drawn carriage passes through the crowd with a man on board waving a stick over the crowd with a bag attached for donations. More horse drawn carriages are followed by a car and a trolley bus. A procession then follows with people dressed up in historical and comical costumes and decorated trucks, one with the slogan 'Eat More Sweets'. These are followed by a marching brass band. Another band is dressed in clown costumes playing instruments made to look like fruit and vegetables, followed by children and others in fancy dress, including a group of men in various costumes with blackened faces, one clearly dressed as a miner (the miners were on national strike at the time). On one truck a scene from Oliver Twist is enacted, followed by several empty horse drawn carts.
After further film of the crowd the parade precedes with a Boys Brigade band and behind them another brass band wearing funny hats with false noses and glasses. There is more of the procession, including clowns and acrobats performing as they go along, and many highly decorated vehicles, commercial and non- commercial, followed by a scout's band. In a field some children dressed in white do ring-a-ring-a-roses and then, on an outdoor wooden stage, they crown one of the girls with a flowered garland. A close up of a small boy is followed by the crowned girl curtsying to the camera.
Intertitle: 'Elland Carnival, July, 1927, taken exclusively for this Theatre.' More film of the carnival, beginning with the boys brigade band followed by dignitaries in a car and in horse drawn carriages. The scouts are followed by small children in fancy dress costume. A clown pushes a pram crammed with dolls and with an umbrella and with 'VIROL' written on the front. He is followed by several fire brigade trucks also collecting from the onlookers. There then comes the clown brass band. One clown, with a blacked face, pushes a makeshift cart with board stating, 'Home-Breaker Bros the Bailifes (sic) of Note'. He is followed by trucks promoting everything from toffee to electricity. One truck with 'Albion Today' inscribed on the side is filled with a group of men all wearing ceremonial chains around their necks. Another truck has a small car on it with a banner stating 'Poor Man's Friend, Little Dick, Rich Man's Robber', followed by coal merchants.
A three wheeled motorcycle is being pulled by a car and occupied by a man and a woman wearing goggles. Many and various local traders follow, together with more comical brass bands. After marching scouts, and more film of the crowd, three children are eating ice cream. The Boys Brigade walks in front of open cars and horse drawn carriages carrying dignitaries. The pantomime horse clownishly falls over, with an inscription on its side, 'One of the Nuts of Elland Comic Prize Band'. The man with the pram reappears, this time peddling it. Some women in fancy dress are followed by more shots of the crowd. Several men walk out of the front of a building, possibly a restaurant. Then some men on horseback are seen among a crowd.