Film ID:
NEFA 21688



Visitor Tabs


An amateur film produced by Wilfred Bunting recording the processions of colourful floats, many representing local companies and organisations, costumed children and juvenile jazz bands parading through the town of Newton Aycliffe in County Durham as part of The Great Aycliffe Town Carnival during the years 1974, 1975, 1977 and 1979.

The film opens on an advertising poster attached to a wooden fence that reads ‘Newton Aycliffe Festival ’74. Stupendous Carnival Parade’.

On Isherwood Close in Newton Aycliffe, a man in a leather jacket, a woman and small boy stand in the street. The woman begins to adjust the boys clothing. Hand in hand, they cross the road and make their way towards St Cuthbert’s Way where a crowd has gathered.

Along Central Avenue past the Parish Church of St Clare’s, a procession of decorated floats, costumed children and juvenile jazz bands, including the Newton Aycliffe Grenadiers, make their way around the roundabout turning right into Stephenson Way. At the head of the procession come five young women wearing white tops with red mini-skirts, twirling batons.

Many varied and colourful floats travel past including one in the shape of an American paddle steamer built by members of the GEC [The General Electrical Company] Sports and Social Club. Another float is a seaside scene with lighthouse and rowing boat and a banner underneath reading ‘Those Were the Days’. Another float contains a number of cars made up to look like police cars. Men in fake police uniforms look down. A banner on the float reads ‘The Fuzz Special’.

Title: Newton Aycliffe Parade 1975.

General views of a float in the shape of George Stephenson’s Locomotion No.1. A man smoking a pipe stands on the footplate while four women in colourful costumes climb aboard. A passenger carriage built as part of the float stands at the back. The women climb inside. The float drives out of a car park onto a road. A banner across the front of the float reads ‘150 Years of Steam’. The man on the footplate waves a white handkerchief as the women look out from the carriage.

Two police officers on horseback lead this year’s procession around the roundabout past Parish Church of St Clare’s and into Stephenson Way. A Scottish bagpipe marching band walk behind the officers. A yellow Ford Cortina travels past, its occupants waving. A small group of young women in white tops and red mini-skirts come next followed by a procession of decorated floats, juvenile jazz bands and costumed children similar to those seen in the previous year.

On a field area beside one of the floats, a man plays with a small boy watched by a woman. She walks away across the field looking back at the camera.

Back on the roundabout, a procession of costumed children marches past. A juvenile jazz band comes around the roundabout followed by the float containing the replica of Locomotion No.1. It is driving slowly with those on board waving at the crowds as they pass. The banner underneath the float reads ‘GEC Sports and Social Club’.

General views showing juvenile jazz bands such as the Milehouse Monarchs from Stockton-On-Tees and decorated floats travelling around the roundabout. Again, a number of the floats have been made by members of staff for local companies including MJN Colston and Flymo.

The film changes to show the Newton Aycliffe Grenadiers juvenile jazz band marching around the roundabout followed by a decorated float to commemorate the Silver Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II in 1977. A large crown sits in the centre of the float while costumed characters representing England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland wave at the crowd.  A Magic Roundabout float travels past next, followed by the Melody Makers juvenile jazz band from Ashington

More views show decorated floats including several produced to celebrate the Silver Jubilee by staff at British Rail Engineering Ltd at Shildon and MJN Colston. Juvenile jazz bands also pass by including the Richmond Hill Toppers and the North Kenton Magpies. A number of other themed floats pass including one for ‘The Wizard of Oz’. Two floats pass with members of Jacques Dancing School on board with ‘Winter Wonderland’ and ‘Y Viva Espania’ themes. Members of staff on the Union Carbide float advertise its support of Unicef.

The film changes to show a woman holding a baby in her arms.

From Central Avenue across the road from the Parish Church of St Clare’s, a brass band marches past followed by three young women sitting in the back of a float decorated with flowers.

General views of more decorated floats travelling onto the roundabout including one saying ‘Sport for All’, another with a banner which reads ‘Busty Terrace Presents the Muppet Show’ with characters from the show in the back waving at the crowds.

 The Winlaton Vulcanaires Jazzband march past behind their banner as spectators watch. More floats travel past as well as costumed children. Some of the floats have futuristic themes with one showing a man and woman dressed as Darth Vader and Princess Leia from the film Star Wars. Another float contains a number of women dressed in silvery costumes waving at the crowds standing beside a model of a rocket. The caption underneath the float reads ‘Out of this World’. Another float in the shape of a Viking longboat with a road sign on the front saying ‘Aycliffe’.

With the floats now moved on, a young boy on the other side of the road makes faces at the camera. Normal traffic begins to move along Central Way. A woman takes the boy's hand and they walk away. The time on a clock tower reads 2.07pm.

From an upstairs window, a man plays football with two boys and a girl in a back garden. A second young girl rides along the garden path on a bicycle. One of the boys falls over and the man come over and begins to rub his right leg. He gets up and the game of football begins again. The young girl walks over to the man who hugs her. The film ends with the man picking her up while the two boys continue to play football on the grass.