Film ID:
NEFA 21921



Visitor Tabs


A home movie of a family believed to from the Spennymoor area of County Durham begins with a woman and small girl walking through sand dunes looking at a colony of Terns. This is followed by a school sports day in which boys take part in various sporting and gymnastic events on the lawn of a large house. The final part of the film made after the 18th February 1941 following the worst blizzard conditions since 1888 shows the effects of heavy snow around the Spennymoor area including people walking past huge banks of snow and men working to clear the streets.

The film opens on views of sand dunes with low hills in the distance. In the sky a large number of birds fly about, possibly a colony of Terns. A woman and young girl appear in the dunes, the girl looking down on a nest in the sand. The film cuts to a view of eggs in nests. More views follow of the birds flying overhead as well as a small airplane.

The woman and girl are walk along the sand near the mouth of a tidal river. The film changes to a man standing beside a rowing boat, he helps the girl and woman aboard. Across the water in the near distance is a small village.

The film cuts to show flowers and greenery growing along a riverbank and cows grazing in a field.

The film changes to show a parade of young schoolboys wearing dark school blazers and caps with white shorts walking along a path beside a large garden lawn. A large house stands at the top of the lawn.

A number of students, now all in white, jump a low bar held by two other boys. They are being watched by other students sitting nearby .A boy walks forward holding a sheet of paper, the film quickly cuts to number of other students taking part in a race that begins at the far end of the field. They sprint past watching students along a marked track. The sequence is filmed two more times.

A general view of a large country house with lawn cuts to show a group of students performing a gymnastics display on the grass. They form a pyramid and wall out of their bodies, the boy at the top of the pyramid holding up a Union Jack.

Standing in a line, the boys each bowl a ball, the film cuts to them attempting to walk along a line of boxes. A man stands nearby watching as they all eventually lose their balance and fall off. Out on the grass a group of boys begin to play a ball game. This is followed by the group performing a number of gymnastic displays against a set of parallel bars.

A woman juggles a pair of bowling pins followed by a group of boys running around a track marked out on the grass. A synchronised routine on bicycles follows watched by crowds of family members sitting around the edge of the sports field. The boys then take part in a wheelbarrow race involving real wheelbarrows followed by views of another race in which a boy is filmed running along a track, turning, running back and placing something inside a birds cage.

They sequence comes to an end with the boys taking part in a synchronised dance routine and more gymnastics watched over by a number of men. The film cuts to the boys standing a line in front of their parents, a woman stand in front of them probably making a speech.

The film cuts to show a snowy landscape of trees, bushes and a bird table. A woman in a fur coat walks cautiously along a path through the snow followed by views of a house in the snowy landscape. A man walking along the pathway towards a garden gate cuts to show a road hidden under several inches of snow.

General views show a road and a row of houses covered in snow. A small boys walks along a path with the banks of snow piled high on both sides. He makes a snowball and throws it.

General views show pedestrians making their way along the snow covered paths and roads. A man digs snow off the road in front of his house.

Along a street in Spennymoor a group of men work together to shovel snow off the road. The film cuts to a number of people walking along a different road in the town that is now cleared of snow.

General views show men clearing snow from various road and street, the filmcuts to a man on horseback standing beside a lorry on Spennymoor High Street. The lorry is full of snow. In the near distance Spennymoor Town Hall. General views follow of pedestrians and traffic moving along the High Street past banks of snow that are as high as many of the people passing them.

Along a snow covered country lane a man, woman and child walk carefully. A view of a house in the snow is followed by a woman shovelling snow from a path. A man has difficulty climbing a large bank of snow in a field, he slips in above his legs and has to crawl part of the way.

General views of men working to clear the snow from a road is followed by views of people walking along the road past banks of snow which rise to head height.
The film cuts to show a series of terraced houses built around a square, a public house is at the far end with a red sign. General views follow of St John the Evangelist's Church at Kirk Merrington near Spennymoor and the surrounding countryside in snow.  

Three children have a snowball fight which is followed by views of a house in the landscape covered in snow. Down a small bank in the garden the three children slide down on a sled waving at the camera as they pass. They pull the sled back up the hill and go back down again. A woman appears at an upstairs window in the house and a small boys sits in the snow by the sled.

The film cuts to a stone bridge crossing a river with views of bare trees along the riverside and in a wood. A woman and two children stand beside the entrance of Auckland Castle in Bishop Auckland where the film ends.