Film ID:
YFA 4806

RAIL TRIP TO LONDON AND PARIS 1958

1958

Visitor Tabs

Description

Students from the Blenheim Boys School in Leeds take a trip to London via train to see the sights. Following this, they take a ferry to Paris. The film includes footage of the famous sites of both cities.

Outside York train station, a large group of schoolboys stand in school picture formation. Their luggage is at their feet. On the platform there is another posed picture, but appears to be a smaller group. The film appears to follow just one class group throughout. Interiors of the train show the boys in a reserved carriage, drinking from cartons of milk, and looking out the window. The view changes from an industrial landscape with chimney stacks and wagons to open countryside.

In London the boys stare at a plaque on the side of a house to which the camera pans up. The plaque commemorates William Bligh (1754-1817), Commander of the famous 'Bounty' ship, who once lived in the house. The boys continue down the street, still in school uniform - with hats and their cameras - and are show to enter the Imperial War Museum. They pose informally outside the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben, on Westminster Bridge and beneath the Downing Street sign. The door to 10 Downing Street is also shown, with two policemen on guard. The group progresses to Buckingham Palace, and films the Horse Guards, Queen's Guards (who doesn't smile, but does look at the camera) and a pair of jolly Policemen on duty outside the Palace. They also visit Trafalgar Square and shots are included of one of the lion statues in the square.

Internal shots of the boys as they are larking about, playing cards, reading magazines, drinking cartons of milk while on the train. On the ferry, there are shots of the gangway and ship's funnel, and radar. The boys are sitting on the deck by the railing, playing about and pulling faces while the other passengers doze on deckchairs. One woman passenger struggles against the wind to keep her skirts under control. Disembarking from the ferry, the group takes the train through the countryside, no interior shots of train, but the French countryside shown is through the train's window.

There is a sign for the Rue du Montcel, Ecole Prudence followed by footage of imposing house and gardens. The group of boys and a teacher walk down sunny street while they enjoy ice creams.

Now in Paris, and there is a shot of the Eiffel Tower. One of boys looks down on the gardens and various vistas of Paris from the Tower platform/balcony. The film includes various Paris sights: Notre Dame, and the Bastille ruins in Square Henri-Galli.

On a French motorway -shots of 1950s cars in motion and Purfina garage (European chain during 1950s), are followed by interiors of boys on the bus. The boys are sitting outside under tree, having a picnic lunch.

Shots of French street cafes and artists of varying styles, one painting Dome of the Sacre-Coeur(?), another painting a row of houses/shops, another painting in a more modern style, and a man painting portraits. There is also a shot of a man in a striking bicorne hat (a la Napoleon). This is followed by people entering Sacre-Coeur, and of the busy gardens in front of it. Lots of people are sitting out on chairs, enjoying the weather. Piecemeal shots of the Arc de Triomphe (no shot of entire thing) and 1950s cars on the road in front. The boys, out of uniform and dressed in shorts and shirts, are viewing the Arc de Triomphe from across the road. The boys looking at the tomb of the unknown soldier, inscription, 'ici repose un soldiat Francais mort pour la patrie 1914-1918'

PARIS SIGHTS - the Avenue de Champs-Elysees - with a woman modelling or posing

Visiting Versailles, the boys appear to be worn out by all their sightseeing. They drag their feet and collapse on the grass.

There are shots of Chez Leon, a French caf?, with family group outside it - as opposed to schoolboys. The film closes with the school group returning home on the train, eating chocolate and playing cards.