Film ID:
NEFA 21604

A VILLAGE IN NORTHUMBRIA

1971

Visitor Tabs

Description

This film by South Shields amateur filmmaker Lilian Wincote is about the village of Ovingham in Northumberland and includes it's famous Goose Fair, which has ancient origins. The film also gives an impression of village life.

Title: A Village In Northumbria

The film begins with a view of the river Tyne.

Title: Ovingham on Tyne

A general view of the river from a grassy bank. Cars pass over the single lane Ovingham bridge. The film cuts to the front of the White Swan pub in the village. Views follow of the window of a general store, advertising Ross's and Bird Eye frozen food. Shots of villagers chatting on the pavement and generally going about their business.

The film cuts to St Mary's church and it's 12th century tower, then to a man making roof repairs on a stone built house. A farmer drives a tractor out of a farmyard towing a piece of agricultural machinery. The film cuts to the information board of St Mary's listing daily and weekly services. The film cuts again to show the old church tower in close up. A close up of a tablet mounted on a wall in the interior of the church that commemorates Thomas Bewick the famous naturalist, artist and engraver. Both he and his wife are buried in the church grounds.

Title: Bewick of Cherryburn

General views follow of a number of stills showing wildlife engravings and rural scenes by the artist. 

Views follow of a tethered goat on the old village green, then items of washing on a clothes line. A woman walks across a stone footbridge, a 17th century construction leading from the village green to the west of the village. A close up shows the arches and stonework of the bridge with the Tyne flowing below. A brief shot of a stone chimney belonging to redundant bleach and dye works follows, with wild flowers on the riverbank.

The film cuts to a marching group of morris men or sword dancers possibly the Newcastle Kingsmen sword dancers at Ovingham goose fair. A man in the parade carries a placard which advertises the goose fair(?). Mike Neville is the mystery celebrity, (the mystery celebrity  a tradition in the village) who opens the fair.  Behind, others in the parade are in fancy dress. Some of the Kingsmen perform a dance as the parade moves along. More dancing from the Kingsmen with music from Northumbrian pipes.

Title: Bewick Book Fair

A display of books (published by Frank Graham?) of local history topics is spread across a table. Film cuts to someone baking using a bowl to mix ingredients for a 'singing hinny' a Northumberland type of griddle cake, which are then baked on an iron skillet(?). Two women sample the end result. Other women pour tea at a stall. Hot dogs are cooked in bulk! More dancing from the Kingsmen, who hold swords up which are locked together in a star pattern.

The film cuts to examples of crafts on display including wrought ironwork and ceramics. A man sings and plays guitar. A game of skittles follows, others use fishing rods to hook onto bottles, some throw coins into an artificial pond. More traditional dancing follows and children play in fancy dress.

The film cuts to the stone footbridge seen earlier. Two women and a young girl walk away from the camera down a track. This is followed by a brief shot of the tethered goat and of a cows in a field. The film ends with a general view of the river.

Title: 'The End