Film ID:
NEFA 19934



Visitor Tabs


A film made by amateur filmmaker Betty Cook of the annual medieval fair taking place in Sedgefield on the 22 May 1976. The film shows festivities taking place on the town green with many people in costume. There are views of various activists and stalls including a medieval barbecue, craft stalls and a man being dunked into a pool of water. The film also includes a juvenile jazz band performing as well a race between three pantomime horses.

The film opens on a notice attached to a fence facing the road. It reads: 'Don't Miss the Sedgefield Mediaeval Fayre, May 22nd, Village Green, 11am to 4pm'.

Next a shot of the church clock tower, and a commemorative cross where people are beginning to gather. A steam traction engine goes past pulling a trailer. A man in a medieval gilet style fur coat gets out of his car. He walks towards a sideshow which is being put together on a grass verge nearby.

The final touches are made to another sideshow under construction, which uses a medieval castle theme in its design.

Two girls walk towards the camera along a pavement in the village wearing old fashioned bonnets and floral printed dresses.

More crowds gather outside the Cameron's pub, the Hope Inn.

A juvenile jazz band dressed in purple and yellow play drums. A young majorette goes through her paces with her baton. Two older majorettes face each other going through a static marching routine. They perform tricks with their batons, throwing them to each other. They stop as the drumming ceases.

The film cuts to show activities on the village green as the crowds increase. Two 'cannon' are pulled toward the camera by men in costume. They position them in preparation for a display.

General views show the crowds looking on waiting for events to begin. A close up shows a set of stocks behind which is a flat frame similar to a theatre prop, with the painting of a medieval castle door.

The film cuts to a young woman dressed as a princess or possibly as Maid Marion from the Robin Hood legend. Back at the stocks a young boy releases himself from the mechanism.

The camera picks out an older man in a purple tunic, the camera zooms in for a closer shot.

A long shot shows a coffee and gift shop advertising a medieval barbecue. A close up of a window shows a small notice advertising the medieval fair.

On the village green an open stall advertises itself as 'Ye Potterie Stall'. Close ups show a range of ceramic items for sale including small frogs, jugs and mugs.

On another stall women in medieval garb check their watches. Another man in exotic medieval costume shakes the wire basket of a chip fryer.

A brief close up show aprons or other textiles decorated with coats of arms. A woman in costume wanders through the crowd near the stalls. Another girl in costume wears a garter round her knee.

At a sideshow a man sits on a platform held upright by two ropes at either end. The ropes go over a flat, similar to a theatre prop which represents an old bridge over a river. Suddenly the ropes are released and he falls into a pool of water just in front of the platform.

A view of a group of men talking, shows the back view of a vest he wears over his roll neck jumper. The vest is decorated with a stylised representation of an eagle. A brief shot follows of a woman preparing to sing or speak on stage.

A pantomime horse walks by, attached to its back is a notice which reads: 'The Ceddesfeld Streaker' and another notice which reads 'Last Years Winner'.  Another, bright red pantomime horse joins this horse followed by another. A young girl in costume walks amongst them, then she prepares the horses for a race. they all line up , then they all run off together into the crowd.

General views show a girl and woman in the crowd, both in period costume. The woman appears to give something to children in the crowd.

A close-up follows of three Cavalier King Charles spaniels. The man in fur gilet seen earlier makes another appearance as he walks away from the camera.

St George's flag flies from the church tower. The clock shows the time of 4.55pm.

The film ends with views of stalls from the days events being dismantled. The camera pans right to left across the village green as pieces of litter are blown across the grass in the wind.