Film ID:
NEFA 10140



Visitor Tabs


The filmed element of an edition of the Tyne Tees Television current affairs programme Your World This Week asks whether amusement arcades and bingo halls are attracting the wrong kind of people to the village of Seahouses on the Northumberland coast.

The programme opens with general views of the harbour and fishing boats moored there. Since before World War Two, says reporter Mike Pounder, Seahouses has been a popular destination for tourists, but the village has had more recently attracted vandals.

There are views showing the exterior of a number of amusement arcades and bingo halls in the town. According to the Chief Constable of Northumberland Constabulary, it is the village’s own fault for providing facilities such as the amusement arcades that attract troublemakers.  

Interview with a local Presbyterian minister, the Reverend Davies, who blames these amusement arcades for attracting ‘a certain class of people’. He does not believe these arcades have contributed to any the moral decline of the village, rather they have ‘diluted the quality of life’.

On the quayside, interview with Skipper Tom Dawson of ‘The Provident’ who says that vandals have damaged some of his lobster pots. He even saw one vandal set a fire underneath the fuel tank on the dockside.

Interview with William Brewer, local councilor and Justice of the Peace, who totally disagrees with the comments of the Chief Constable. He sees the comments as a way for him to shift responsibility of policing onto Seahouses itself.

Interior shots of ‘Pieces of 8’ amusement arcade show various arcade games and one-armed bandit machines. Interview with the owner of the establishment, Mr Jack Britain, who says that this establishment has been open more than two years and hasn’t seen any bother. He comments that troublemakers are not served by him or any other traders in the village.

A general view out onto Main Street looking along Seafield Road from the doorway of a cottage, which is to be demolished to make way for a new amusement and bingo hall. Interview with local resident Mr Aitchison who has submitted a petition against the building of a new bingo hall. His main concerns are danger from traffic, noise pollution and it being built on a site designated for residential housing. He says Seahouses is a pretty little fishing village and he wants to keep it that way.

The Reverend Davies is not happy about the way some planning decisions are taken. He believes the local parish council and the views of local people are being ignored with regards to the building of this new amusement arcade.

The film cuts back to William Brewer who disagrees with the comments of the Reverend. Belford Rural District Council gives both the parish council and local people every opportunity to be involved in planning applications.

General view of the Northumberland County Council building in Newcastle upon Tyne where any final decision on building applications are made. Interview with County Planning Officer John Ross who says he understands the misgivings of local people on the dangers of facilities such as amusements and bingo halls attracting ‘irresponsible individuals’. He has sought to get agreements where possible with local people, and has to make the right balance of development.

Back at Seahouses, various general views follow along Main Street near the roundabout at Seafield Road, including Neptune’s Self Service Café and Dolphin Club Restaurant. Workmen on the proposed site of the new bingo hall and amusement arcade work to clear the cottages. In voiceover, John Ross comments that unlike other seaside villages such as Beadnell, Seahouses has established itself as a tourist destination and so facilities are needed. However, he believes a balance has been maintained. The film ends back on the harbour with views of men working there and a trawler on the water.