Film ID:
YFA 3805

PRINTERS' INK

1962

Visitor Tabs

Description

Produced by F.P. Waddington, this film captures all the daily practices and working methods of Waddington printers, which produce the Todmorden News & Advertiser. Providing the viewer with a tremendous amount of depth into the newspaper industry, the filmmaker covers reporters researching and writing articles, editors proofing material, the printing process, and even some insight into the distribution of the Todmorden News & Advertiser.

The film opens with a shot of two men in a shop looking at a newspaper. A voice details the purposes of the documentary: to illustrate the inner workings of the local newspaper.

Title - 'B & D' Present.

Title - Printers ink.

Title - A documentary showing a period in the life of a newspaper.

Title - Camera: F.P. Waddington. Lighting and sound: Norman D. Brown.

Title - Produced by F.P. Waddington for the Todmorden News & Advertiser.

A car parks on a street, and a man wearing glasses and a long winter coat enters a police station. The voice over explains this is Mr John Graham, chief reporter of the Todmorden News and Advertiser. Inside the police station, the reporter talks to a constable who flicks through records. The voice over then gives a brief insight into the working relationship between the press and police.

A man wearing a smart suit and trilby enters an office. The voice over asserts that this is Mr Sam Tonkis, editor of the news and advertiser, and the filmmaker captures various shots of him going about his work. The filmmaker cuts to show the editorial team discussing the upcoming edition.

In Todmorden magistrate's court, reporter John Graham takes notes on the legal proceedings, and the voice over states that this hearing concerns a motoring offence. After the sentencing, the reporter chats to the chief of police; both men smoke cigarettes.

Mr Harvey - vicar of Cross stone - sits at a desk writing letters, he then leaves the Cross stone vicarage, which according to the voice over, had many associations with the Bronte sisters. Cutting away from the Vicarage, the filmmaker captures the exterior of Waddington and Sons printers' office. Then the vicar enters the office and drops some letters off. A young woman by the name of Sheila Howell, a junior reporter, types up some notes on a typewriter.

In the next sequence, the voice over jovially rhapsodises about the lighter side of the newspaper industry, and this is illustrated by people playing table tennis and having a drink at a pub. The filmmaker shows a shot of Alka-Seltzer's being dropped into a glass, then cuts to show reporter John Graham at his desk.

The Mayor, John Graham G.P., is dressed in ceremonial regalia by aides; he also wears the chain of office. The Mayor addresses those present at the council meeting, and the voice over explains that this includes 18 council members - all of whom represent the six wards of the borough - six Aldermen, technical officials and the reporters who make notes on the debate.

Cutting to Centrevale Park, junior reporter Sheila Howell covers a football match taking place on the field, and in the background Todmorden parish church can be seen in the distance. In a room that resembles some sort of library, Mr and Mrs Waddington are presented with flowers, which the voice over says is to commemorate their fiftieth wedding anniversary, they then pose for a photographer.

A traffic accident is simulated by means of a dramatization, which involves a motor bike crashing into a car. A man is then captured calling an ambulance, and the victims of the crash are tended to by paramedics and taken away to hospital. A police car then turns up at the accidents site, and a constable then talks to a witness and a reporter, who takes notes on the incident. The voice over describes the action as it happens, and again reiterates the close relationship between police and press.

The filmmaker captures a wall with various road safety posters stuck to it. Junior reporter Sheila Howell then meets two off duty constables, who show her a children's cycling safety session; involving children riding round cones to test their proficiency and understanding of highway signs. Then the children gather round to hear the results of the examination.

In a dark room, reporter Mr John Graham takes a developed photo of the traffic accident and places it in an envelope. Next, the following sequence shows the initial printing process, whereby metal is melted down for the line type machines. The metal is then cast into the correct formation of characters using a linotype machine, and the casts are then hand rolled with ink rollers onto sheets of paper; the voice over divulges more details concerning this process. The editor and secretary proof read the prints, before the next shot shows Mr Hodgson - of the bus committee - discussing with Mr Waddington - general owner - an advert that was placed in the paper.

The filmmaker then shows the designing of the page templates, which are constructed using lots of lines of metal cast type. The pages are then placed on what the voice over describes as a Cosser reel fed printing machine, capable of making 5000 printed pages an hour. With the page templates in place, the printing machine begins to produce the papers, which are then sent up to the editor for final inspection.

The issue is approved, and the machine begins to mass produce the papers, under the supervision of two workers wearing overalls. Two girls then roll the papers preparing them for delivery, before the filmmaker cuts to a montage of the paper producing process; a multitude of shots shows the printing machines from various angles, and this is set to a classical soundtrack. The papers are then wrapped, put in to a van, and delivered to a newsagent.

Title - The director and producer are indebted to the newspaper staff, accident prevention council, West Riding county ambulance service and the Mayor and the Town council of Todmorden for their kind co-operation and tolerance; also to their many friends who helped them in this venture.