Film ID:
YFA 5462



Visitor Tabs


This is a film made to commemorate the granting of a Charter of Incorporation to the Borough of Rotherham in 1861.  The film provides a history of the town, and an update of local services, with interviews with the Town Planning Officer and the Director of Education.

The film begins with a man on stage singing a song about Rotherham, possibly the Mayor, in front of an audience of children and adults.  The film switches to show aspects of Rotherham with a commentary providing a historical overview of the town.

Title – Rotherham Borough Council Presents: Rotherham Forged with Pride

The commentary provides more on the history before moving to the council chambers where the Mayor is making his inaugural speech.  He talks about celebrating their centenary and the current proposals for local authority re-organisation.  There is a service of re-dedication with the bishop of Sheffield giving a speech on the charter of corporation.  There is commentary on the fifteenth century Thomas Rotherham.

Several locations are shown, such as the Bridge Church, and other local churches for other denominations.  The history continues in medieval times, explaining the Royal Charter by King John, and then on to the 18th century furnace builder Samual Walker, and Clifton House. It is explained that Walker’s business made money from canons and building bridges, including Southwalk Bridge.  There is more history of local industry and the railway.  While someone gives an oration, there is film of a steel works in operation, including Steel, Peach and Tosser.  Then on to Beatson Clark glassworks, with the current owner speaking to the camera as we see glass bottles being made.

The history continues, describing the poverty, with views of terraced housing and some scenes from the folk play produced for the centenary celebrations, including a scene on the campaign for women’s vote.  There is a description of some of the reforms and new housing developments in the late nineteenth century, showing more terraced houses, and an interview with an elderly couple about the conditions of their old houses. Then there is an interview with a Mr Davies, the Town Planning Officer on new development in council housing, showing the new council estates. This is followed by more views of other council developments, such as an old people’s home, the bus station, and other changes to the town centre, including the new market with its new restaurant.

The film moves on to show local schools, starting with Rockingham County Primary School, and then to a classroom at the new Canklow Primary School, where pupils are working in the school library and doing arts and crafts.  The Director of Education, Mr L G Taylor explains recent education developments in Rotherham. A teacher conducts a music lesson, followed by a school swimming class, and a class doing free dance.  In a large park area there is a cricket match and a girl’s hockey match.  As the different facilities are listed there is also some athletic practice.  Other recreational sports are shown: golf, tennis, and bowls.

The film moves on to show students working in a laboratory at Rotherham College.  Returning to Mr Taylor, he states the desire to expand adult education in the humanities.  Then on to a centre for “handicapped” children, being aided in rehabilitation.  The film switches to show some of the items on display in the museum in Clifton Park, including Rockingham ware.  Then on to the library, where many posters are shown advertising local talks next to the photocopying machine.  There is some film of industrial sites around Rotherham and a clip from the film of the visit of the Prince of Wales in 1923.  This is followed by views of recent new feeder roads, including the M1 flyover.  The film finishes with the Mayor addressing the camera about the impending new wider local authority that is being created.

End Credits
Consultants – Freda Crowder, Dorothy Greene, and Alderman Stanley Crowther
Research and Script – George Page
Suite: ‘where two rivers meet’, composed by John Franklin, played by Carlton Main Frickley Colliery Band.
Photography – Paul Simmon, Graham Brown
Sound – Ken Mellor
A Paul Simmon Production, Halifax, England.