Film ID:
YFA 695

RACHEL DISCOVERS ENGLAND

1935-1937

Visitor Tabs

Description

This is a film made by Charles Chislett focusing on his young daughter Rachel over a two period, from her learning to walk and past her second birthday. It shows her playing at home with another girl about her same age and on a family holiday in Devon. It is a companion to another Chislett film, 'Rachel Discovers the Sea', made about the same time.

(B&W) Title - Rachel Discovers England
Chapter 1 - The progress of Rachel (from hardly anything, onwards)

Rachel, aged about 10 months, sits on a blanket on the grass in the back garden with the pet dog, a fox terrier (snowy), followed by Rachel sitting in a wood among the fallen leaves in Autumn. Then Rachel is at home using the settee to help her get up and walk, with her teddy bear looking on. She crawls around the floor with snowy following. Back in the garden Rachel sits on a toy dog on wheels, propelling herself along next to the pram. Grace gives her a push, and then helps her to walk. Rachel kneels up at the window with snowy looking through the window. The surrounding gardens are covered in snow. Rachel again goes on her dog on wheels. Grace again helps her to walk and then pulls her along on a, larger, donkey on wheels. Rachel plays with snowy and then with another little girl, possibly her cousin. Now able to walk, though occasionally falling over, Rachel toddles around the garden, before sitting among the spring flowers with snowy.

(Col. - turned pink) Now a bit older, Rachel again plays with her cousin in the garden. The two of them each pull a little trolley along. The two girls are held by their mothers, and then they walk around the flower beds holding toy spades.

(B&W) Grace walks with the two girls next to a field of horses. The two girls play on a see-saw, along with Rachel's grandfather, and then play among the autumn leaves. Next Rachel is playing on the beach at Blackpool in autumn, next to a pier, and then running along the sea front. The film switches to winter, with the garden covered in snow. Rachel comes out into the heavy snow with Grace. They drive out to the countryside and look at the snow covered fields, with sheep and new born lambs. Later in the year Rachel is again in her garden with her cousin, and her new born baby brother John, being held by a maid. Chislett sits in a deckchair smoking as the two girls run about and play. Rachel climbs over a fence, and then the two girls are in their swimsuits watering the flowers in the garden with a hose and watering can. John joins them, trying to use a golf club. Charles Chislett chases the girls with the hose.

On another occasion, Rachel pushed her toy pram around the garden. Rachel blows out two candles on her birthday cake.

Intertitle - Chapter 3. Rachel aged two and a bit, discovers Devon, and a number of other things

Rachel sits on a tree for the camera, and is then seated on the knee of an elderly woman with a book. She then gets out of her cot and gets some more books before getting a piggy back ride on the back of her father. Rachel brushes her teeth and watches her father shave. They go out in the family car, and Rachel wanders around the grounds of the large house in which they are staying. Rachel stands by a lake with a walking stick, watching the swans. Rachel walks around a farm, with piglets, a foal and baby ducks. They visit Wells and the Cathedral. A group of boys stand looking at the ducklings in the moat.

Next they visit the coast, and we see the road sign for Porlock Hill, with wild horse in the nearby fields. A bus passes. Rachel wanders near the rocks on the coast with a bucket and spade, examining the seaweed and watching the waves rolling in. Fishermen haul in a net, watched by a long line of people from a nearby bridge. Next they visit Clovelly, looking down the steep hill. They stop at a cafe where Rachel has a glass of milk and an ice cream wafer with her mother. Inside their holiday accommodation Rachel plays on a slide. They then say their farewells at the hotel and drive through the Devon countryside. A dog plays with a cat in a garden with Rachel and a tortoise.

Next they visit a zoo, with Rachel looking at the large cats, giraffes, monkeys and other animals.

(Col. - turned pink) Rachel wanders in the grounds of their holiday accommodation overlooking the sea. On the beach Rachel plays in the pools of water with a bucket and spade and toy boat. Again driving through the countryside, they find the road blocked by a flock of sheep. Rachel walks along by a stream and is then again back on the beach. They visit a small village on the coast where boys are fishing in the sea. Rachel has a go in a rowing boat and then gets taken for a donkey ride. A postman walks along a country lane with a donkey. Rachel and Grace again walk down to the coast and Rachel plays on the beach. The film finishes with Rachel playing with the blind at their holiday accommodation.