Film ID:
NEFA 8762



Visitor Tabs


Billingham Film Unit cine-magazine featuring three news items: VIPs and ICI board members attend a screening of the ICI cine-magazine production "Just Billingham" at the Gaumont Theatre in London's Wardour Street. A second feature looks at ICI workers using Durham County Council's Mass Radiography Unit for health checks. The final part looks at the work of the Anhydrite Mine. Anhydrite was mined in the Billingham area from 1928, located in the Casebourne division of the works.

Title and Credits: Just Billingham No. 15 October 1947 Commentary spoken by John Snagge

Title: "Just Billingham" Goes to Town

This film showcases the "Just Billingham" film series’ screening in Gaumont Theatre, Film House, Wardour Street, London, with shots of the cinema frontage and sign depicting "Wardour Street". Well known visitors and ICI headquarters’ staff arrive at the theatre entrance. This includes Mr Warden, Billingham’s Labour Manager, Mr Lloyd Roberts, Chief Labour Officer and Mr George Issacs, Minister of Labour, along with board members of ICI who are dressed smartly in suits and bowler hats.

Lord McGovern introduces the program and pays tribute to the factory at Billingham, congratulating ICI on wartime production. Shots of Big Ben clock accompany the speech. Overhead shots of the Billingham factory and smoking chimneys play out the feature.

Title: Looking into Things: X-Rays on the Job

Workers enter a building signposted as the ‘Durham County Council Mass Radiography Unit’. There are shots of ICI workers going through the X-Ray Clinic. Men get undressed, are weighed and x-rayed. The film includes shots of the medical staff and the x-ray itself. Finally a doctor examines x-ray results with an assistant. Film is accompanied by narration explaining how the majority of the staff are keen to undergo x-ray to check their health and well being.

Title: Winning Anhydrite Film

This feature shows the workings of the Anhydrite Mine, Billingham. The mineral calcium sulphate is in transit in containers transported by rotary machine to the anhydrite mine. Workers are coming on shift. Men get changed into work clothes for which they have separate lockers. They descend in a cage at the pit head to a mine shaft 800ft below the works. There are general views of the mechanisation process in the mine. A senior underground foreman oversees the transference of anhydrite from a train of loaded wagon skips and into the skips which are raised to the surface. Loaded tubs are weighed and the output is measured in a long procession.

The film shows the work of team who deal with explosives: the storage, setting up and safety process. A man gets a drill from the drill store for the blasting process at the working face. Two men are depicted in low-lit tunnels gathering gelignite, charging holes electrically and detonating rock. A montage of shots illustrate the final stages of the process. A voiceover comments on the bravery of the miners.