Film ID:
NEFA 22050



Visitor Tabs


This film by amateur filmmaker John Percival Staddon looks at places and events mainly around the Sunderland and South Shields area. The film begins in Sunderland with Billy Smarts circus parading through the town followed by a study of traffic in the town centre. A visit to a local attraction at the coast is Marsden Rock at South Shields. A brief visit to the night lights in Manchester, then to the North East coast at Seaburn. Next, south to Aysgarth Falls in North Yorkshire is followed by celebrations at a church in Houghton le Spring. Transport finishes the programme with the final remnants of the tram service in Sunderland and rare footage of the 'Halfpenny' Ferry on the river Wear.

Title: Overdale Presents

Title: Places & Faces

Title: The Circus Comes to Town

Billy Smarts circus parades along a Sunderland Street. Floats, performers and crowds take over the streets in an entertainment spectacle. Brass Bands, majorettes, horses and riders, camels, elephants go past the camera. In the background famous Sunderland stores such as Woodhouse’s furniture store can be seen.

Title: How Time Flies

A view of the clockface on the old Sunderland Town Hall along Fawcett Street.

Title: A Bird’s Eye View of the Traffic in Fawcett Street

A view of traffic taken at from the roof of a nearby building looking down onto a crossroads with a pedestrian zebra crossing.

Title: How the Motorist Sees the Pedestrian

A hive of activity as people cross over the road via the zebra crossing filmed in slow motion.

Title: (…) and This is how Traffic Appears to the Pedestrian

Traffic on the road below is speeded up.

Title: This Is How it Really Is

People and traffic move quickly over the crossing.

Title: City Lights in Manchester

Filmed at night views of neon advertising and shop signs in Manchester.

The first sign is for the News Theatre advertising 'comedy’ and ‘cartoons’. The next sign is colourful in the style of a sunrise, advertising ‘Bovril’. Next an sign show the location of a YMCA hostel followed by a sign advertising ‘Player’s Please’ [Players being a brand of cigarettes]

Next a sign showing the location of a ‘ABC Television’ building followed by ‘ The Gondola Coffee House Snacks and Grills’. A bread advert reads ‘Mothers Pride – with Freshness Baked Inside’. A wider view shows a street lit with a large number of neon signs including those for ‘Timpsons Shoes’ and ‘Hepworths’ (men’s tailors).

Title: A Visit to Marsden Rocks

General view of the top of Marsden rock covered with seabirds [filmed in slow motion]. From the beach views of birds perched on the rock face followed by a view of the sea with waves rolling on to the beach. Gulls and other seabirds in flight above and around the rock, again in slow motion.

A young girl plays with a piece of driftwood on the beach near to the rock, followed by a view of children playing on the beach and in the waves along the shoreline.

Children and adults walk through the arch in the rock followed by views of children playing . Out at sea view of a tanker followed by the cliff lift at Marsden.

Title: Spring Tide at Seaburn

Waves crash onto the lower promenade on the sea front. Children try to beat the waves as the water comes crashing over the steel fencing.

Title: …and at Overdale.

At the filmmaker’s home, a woman walks into the garden to admire the roses coming into full bloom.

Title: Aysgarth Falls

A trip to lower Wensleydale in North Yorkshire and one of its famous beauty spots. The film opens with a view of a bridge then general views of the famous triple flight of waterfalls, shaped over time by the River Ure.

General views follow of parts of the river. A family sits on the rocks at the edge of the falls followed by views show the waterfalls from varying angles.

Title: St Michael’s Church – Houghton Le Spring

General views show the church from the road. A closer view shows the clock on the church tower.

Title: Houghton Feast Sunday. Choir Boys of St Michael’s Church Singing on the Tower.

Choir boys, clergy and a small congregation sing at the top of the church tower.

Title: Houghton Feast Illuminations

The film opens on a Heath-Robinson/Rowland Emett type of novelty clock, the Guinness Festival Clock. People gather to watch figures move as the clock strikes.

General views follow of the fairground with various rides, carousels, swings and merry-go-rounds. Other attractions show illuminated stalls and some of the rides at night. One sign reads MUDC 1854-1954.

Title: The Last Trams At Sunderland

General views around Sunderland town centre streets, as the last trams in service at the time navigate their routes. Many of them advertise local stores including Binn’s department store. Some of them advertise Vernon’s Football pools. (A weekly competition based on results from all football matches played around the country on Saturday).

Title: The Halfpenny Ferry At Sunderland

The Sir Walter Raine ferry begins to cross the river and stops at the other side of the river. Passengers disembark, then the ferry makes the return journey. The next sequence shows the ferry making another journey across the river, this time with a view from on board. General views show an array of shipping activity on the Wear. The journey ends then starts again as one of the crew casts off. Some of the few passengers on board look back at the camera as the ferry moves off.

Ther film ends on a slow sunset looking towards Wearmouth bridge and finally fading out ends the film.

Title: Not A Glamorous Ferry You May Think, But What Can You Expect For A Halfpenny.

A halfpenny piece is stuck to the title card.

Title: The End