Film ID:
YFA 4896



Visitor Tabs


Made by C.H. Wood, this is a film commemorating the Golden Jubilee of Hepworth and Grandage of Bradford, manufacturers of the Hepolite piston.  The film shows a wartime visit to the St John factory by Winston Churchill and other ministers, the building of a new office block at the factory and its opening by Stirling Moss in the mid-1950s, and finally an employee trip to Blackpool.

Title – Golden Jubilee 1907-1957  Hepolite

The film begins showing the front cover of a Hepolite Bulletin with a picture of some stainless steel products.  The page is turned over to show a photograph of Elijah Hepworth, Senior, founder of the company, and then an early photo of the company.

Intertitle – The visit of the Prime Minister to the St John works.  The party included  . . .

There is a list of guests with photos of the first three: “Winston Churchill, the Rt. Hon. Sir Archibald Sinclair, K.T., CMG, MP, JP, LL.D Secretary of State for Air, Ernest Bevin PC, MP,, Minister for Labour and National Service, . . . and many other distinguished guests.”  This is followed by film of the party visiting the factory during the Second World War.  Churchill leads the group as they assemble in an office before walking around the factory floor.  Churchill goes over and stands next to a woman working on a machine as she carries on with her job.  Many of the company’s products, including pistons and piston rings, have been lined up on a table for inspection.  They then make their way outside where sandbags have been piled high.

Intertitle – September 1955.  Commencement of building operations at St John’s.

There is large area of ground waiting for work to begin, and the beginnings of the construction are shown beginning with a man digging a trench.

Intertitle – Eight and a half acres of dross hills had to be levelled.

A digger from the builders Higgs & Hill Ltd. loads earth onto a truck, while men dig trenches for pipes.

Intertitle – Adverse weather conditions did not altogether stop work.

Construction of the steel frame is shown in the snow.

Intertitle – A major undertaking was the construction of the tunnel under Neville Road.

A man stands on a plank going over a hole, signalling to the crane driver as he lowers a bucket into the hole to collect waste at the front of the old works.  Elsewhere bricklayers are shown building a large wall.  A man carries a sheet of corrugated iron up a ladder for the roof, which is shown half finished.

Intertitle – Finished components are transferred to the new stores.

Wooden crates are being loaded from a roller belt onto the back of a Hepolite lorry, which is shown leaving the old factory gates and arriving at the site of the new factory.  The crates are unloaded onto a fork lift truck and taken into the new warehouse.

Intertitle – 17th July, 1957.  Official opening of the new office building by Stirling Moss and other guests of honour.

A crowd has assembled at the entrance to the new building, awaiting the arrival of Stirling Moss.   Uniformed attendants (looking like SS officers) stand in the full car park.  The crowd gathers around, smiling and waving to the camera, as dignitaries arrive.  Some, including two West Indian ladies, stand on a wall watching.

Intertitle – The Company’s guests gather in front of the new office building.

The Lord Mayor and Stirling Moss arrive.

Intertitle – Mr G Collin Hepworth, Chairman and Joint Managing Director, introduces Stirling Moss.

Mr Hepworth makes speech and gives Stirling Moss a pair of scissors as he speaks into the microphone, making jokes.

Intertitle – “Sorry . . . not tall enough”.

He then makes a speech and cuts the ribbon.

Intertitle – “Hold it for the press.”

He stands for a while ready to cut while photographs are taken.  The dignitaries then go into the building and do a tour of the outside, across from the ‘Ideal Bakery’.

Intertitle – The guests are entertained to luncheon.

The guests make their way into a marquee which has been impressively done out ready for the banquet.  The luncheon menu is shown.

Intertitle – An early departure.

The Lord Mayor gets into his official car and is driven off.

Intertitle – After luncheon, parties were conducted on tours of the works and offices.

The other guests, including Stirling Moss, continue their tour, with the men in front and the women walking separately behind.

Intertitle – Let’s clear up before Mrs Tony comes.

Some broken glass is swept up and Stirling Moss is presented with a box.

Intertitle – Stirling Moss leaves for a medical check prior to winning the European Grand Prix at Aintree

Stirling Moss shakes hands, gets into his car and drives off.  The filmmaker then shows the brochure and menu for the Jubilee dinner and dance.

Intertitle – Blackpool Invasion 18th May, 1957.  3,600 people, 8 special trains and private buses home.

The front cover of the souvenir programme reads, ‘Hepolite goes to Blackpool’.  A train arrives in Blackpool station where there is a banner for the Golden Jubilee Outing.  Everyone gets off the train, and some stand in the front of the loco which has a special plaque for the occasion.

Intertitle – The Mayor of Blackpool welcomes the Directors’ party at the Central Station.

The Mayor shakes hands with Mr Hepworth.  Together they walk along the platform and into a waiting car.  Workers get into a bus, and visit the beach, across the road from the Montmartre Theatre.  A group of women pose for the camera on a blustery day.

Intertitle – “Ahem!”

The women are then seen seemingly coming out of the Gents public lavatories.

Intertitle – The Directors are taken for a ride.

The Directors, with their wives and the Mayor, board a special tram and head off as some of them have a laugh.

Intertitle – The Hepolite Tea Dance was held in the Winter Gardens.

People are shown arriving at the Winter Gardens.

Intertitle – The press arrive at South Shore.

Press photographers arrive outside in a horse drawn carriage.  Some of them go on the Big Dipper.

Intertitle – The Wanderers.

A group of men and women walk along wearing silly hats.  Others are shown going on some of the rides.

Intertitle – No navigators required.

Some women go on a boat ride along a narrow waterway.  Other rides are shown, and some go on Noah’s Ark.

Intertitle – To be continued at our next Jubilee celebrations in 1982.