Film ID:
NEFA 18564



Visitor Tabs


An amateur film made by the Northumberland County Fire Brigade of the official opening ceremony for the brigade’s new headquarters at Loansdean, Morpeth in 1968. The film includes footage of speeches at the formal ceremony and firemen taking part in various demonstrations.

The film begins with an aerial photograph of the new Northumberland County Fire Brigade headquarters building.

Title: Brigade HQ Morpeth

Title: Official Opening Ceremony, 1968

General views of a man standing behind a lectern speaking to a seated crowd. A second man [believed to be Merlyn Rees] then gives a speech. A plaque is unveiled on the wall behind Mr Rees and the crowd begin to clap. He is then presented with a fountain pen set by a Fire Officer.

Looking down onto the headquarters parade ground a number of firemen stand to attention in front of their fire engines. In the foreground a large van is laying on its side. A Fire Officer walks towards the camera, stops and salutes. He then turns around and walks away. The fire crews rush into their respective fire engines.

A fire engine drives onto the parade ground. Four firemen rush to the overturned van and rescue a dummy from inside. Using winches attached to two engines, they right the van. The van is then attached to a third engine and towed away.

In the middle of the parade ground a fireman lights a fire. Four firemen wearing old fashioned uniforms rush onto the parade ground pulling an historic manual fire tender. A modern fire engine drives onto the parade ground. Three of the firemen pump the manual tender while a fourth fireman holds the hose and puts out the fire. Both engines and their crews leave the parade ground.

Eight firemen carrying extended wooden ladders walk towards a fire tower. Two of the firemen attached their ladder to the tower and begin to climb. They are passed two additional ladders which they attach to an opening on the tower above them and begin to climb higher. All eight firemen are seen on their ladders attached to the tower at various levels. Attached to the ladder with a belt, they all lean out before beginning to climb back down.

A fire engine arrives carrying a longer ladder on wheels. A fire burns on the third floor of the tower. A fireman goes inside and rescues a dummy, while another fire crew fights the fire with hoses from the ground.

A hydraulic platform engine drives onto to the parade ground and pulls up beside the fire tower as the wheeled ladder is moved away. The platform is extended to the top of the fire tower with two fireman standing in the small cabin. An RAF rescue helicopter comes into view from behind the tower. Two men are winched onboard from the roof of the tower. The helicopter moves to hover over the parade ground and the two men are lowered onto the ground by the helicopter winch.

Thirteen firemen and two fire officers stand to attention in a line beside a small truck. Attached to the truck is a display. One of the fire officers lights the edge of the display, which lights up the word "Finale" in sparks.

General views of blue, red and clear water being sprayed into the air from the roof of a building overlooking the parade ground.

Three fire engines drive onto the parade ground and the crews stand beside their vehicles. The film ends with the crews being inspected by a number of dignitaries who also chat and shake hands with a some of the firemen.

Title: The End.