Film ID:
NEFA 21324



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The Lambton Film Group made this amateur film about adults who join a course in filmmaking at Lambton Castle Adult Education College, including a man who is endlessly late for everything. Contains footage of the students filming courses taking place at the college including cookery, dance and archery classes. The students are tutored by veteran amateur filmmaker George Cummin, a member of Newcastle & District Amateur Cinematographers Association (ACA).

Title: Lambton Film Group Presents

Title: …They Came to a Castle …

Credit: Devised & Produced by Lambton Film Group

J. Allison

U.M. Bell

K.L. Brown

W. Dobson

D. Elders

H. Elliott

G. England

D.E. Ferguson

R.W. Gladders

N. Maughfling

J.W. Phillipson

M.J. Phillipson

T.L. Robinson

M.E. Summerbell

Under the general supervision of George Cummin

A secretary types away in an office. Another woman brings in a cup of tea and places it on her magazine, a copy of ‘Films and Filming’. She offers a piece of cake, which the secretary tries.

Title: “This is very nice. Who made it?”

The woman gives her an application for the adult education classes at Lambton Castle, having attended the cookery class there.

Title: “I did. I went on one of the weekend courses at Lambton Castle.”

The typist takes another slice of cake. She looks at the pamphlet as she has her tea. She glances at her magazine. Close-ups of the “Films and Filming” cover and the Lambton Castle Weekend Courses pamphlet, which includes a film course (second in the series), which takes place between 25th and 27th May. She glances at the office calendar, takes the form and pops it in her typewriter and applies for the course.

A man is leaning against a roadside fence, waiting for a bus. An affable man turns up and greets him, reading the label on his small case: “Arthur Shaw, Lambton Castle” Shaw spots the bus approaching.

Title: “I’m going on a Film course. Here – read all about it.”

He leaves the man his pamphlet about the film course at Lambton Castle. The man waves him off as Arthur gets on the bus. The man wanders off, reading the pamphlet, bumps into a telephone box and decides to call Lambton Castle and apply for the film course. A secretary answers at the college, checks her list of students and adds him to the list.

Title: “Yes, we can take you for the Film Course. The College bus leaves Chester-le-Street at six-o’clock.”

The man checks his watch and runs off to catch the bus. The college minibus is waiting for students at Chester-le-Street. The driver checks a church clock. Ten minutes till he’s due to leave. He shows George Cummin the list of students – one student missing (Mr. W. Simpson). They wait a little longer, then drive off. The man hops off the 56 bus at Chester-le-Street in a hurry. He checks whether the minibus is waiting outside the Bridge Street Hotel on Picktree Lane. But he’s missed his connection.

Travelling shot from the minibus along the route and driveway of Lambton Castle Residential College, the secretary who applied to be a student sitting in the passenger seat. The minibus pulls up at the college and the students enter reception and register. The secretary is shown to her room.

The man who missed the bus finally arrives at the college.

All the students are now having tea together and are given an introduction.

Title: “-and, as usual, class timetables and so on are shown on the notice board. I hope, then, that you will all enjoy your studies at Lambton.”

The delayed student arrives just as all other students are leaving their introductory talk. He greets Arthur Shaw and heads to the dining room. The secretary and other students check the college noticeboard. The delayed student, however, tucks into a meal.

In the college lounge, a man is playing the piano, a fellow student seated beside him. The other students are relaxing, reading and chatting. The delayed student arrives later in the lounge, peers at the secretary’s reading matter. She shows him ‘Amateur Movies and How to Make Them’ by Alex Strasser, a 1937 book. He rests on her armchair whilst chatting.

Title: “Films? Me too. I’m Bill Simpson.”

More film students arrive for a chat.

Next morning, Bill Simpson checks the notice board and sees that he should have been in the lecture room earlier. He wanders out of the castle, looking across the grounds towards a bridge. He walks around the castle and down a path into the grounds. The other students have arrived at the lecture room already.

Title: “Well, on our last course we found a subject – “Activities at Lambton” – and wrote the script, so now we must decide who is to do the filming – “

George Cummin is addressing the class (one student smoking). Bill Simpson wanders into the classroom late. George Cummin starts to assign production roles to the students. He sees the secretary is taking shorthand notes and assigns her a role as a continuity girl. Arthur Shaw has been assigned the role of director and now begins to talk through the ideas for a shooting script, and the classes at the college they will film.

The Self-Expression class is the first on the schedule. The secretary studies the script. The camera is set up. The course leader addresses her class beside a tape recorder. A male student takes a seat next to the tape recorder machine. The secretary checks off the shot from her shooting plan.

The next course to be filmed is ‘Informal Dance’ in the main hall. Men and women waltz around the room together, some women partnering each other. A man next to a turntable console takes a bow. He then puts on another record. The student production crew film the dancers from behind lights rigged to a frame. The director calls ‘cut’. A man grabs the secretary for a dance after the film wraps.

On the next morning, the crew are filming the cookery class, George Cummin observing. A female chef is demonstrating in front of the class of women. The novice film crew discuss the shots. Meanwhile, Bill Simpson is engrossed in the secretary’s book in the library. Back in the cookery class, the cameraman is filming the demonstration. Bill Simpson, ever late, sneaks into the classroom, accidently knocking over the chef’s cake tin full of flour mix. The chef is angry. The cameraman continues to take a shot of the cookery students.

Next, the crew are outside filming. Close-ups follow of an exposure meter and aperture adjustment on a lens. A painting class, led by a man in a beret with an easel, takes place on a castle balcony. Portrait shot of the cameraman. General views of the film crew shooting film and the castle. Another shot of the lens aperture being adjusted follows.

The film crew are now in the grounds of the castle shooting an archery class. Brief shot of the target. After the shoot, the secretary consults her shooting script and notes the schedule is complete. Bill Simpson now turns up and has a go with the bow and arrow. The student film crew return to the castle with their equipment. Bill Simpson continues to try to hit the target outside, and fails.

The time is five minutes past five. The secretary is signing up for the next film course at the notice board. Bill Simpson arrives, borrows her pen and signs up too. Suddenly, the secretary realises the minibus leaves for Chester-le-Street at 5pm. They both dash out, only to see the minibus pulling off on its return journey. They begin the long walk home together.

Title: The End