Film: 432

Social History | 1950 | Sound | B/W


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Social services in Peckham, South London. James Allen's Girls School 1950's

The opening and closing sequences are played against a background of choir music.
You are taken through the various services that the school provides with the two schoolgirls being shown exactly how they work and giving them the opportunity to participate in some of them.
The nursery class for children 3-5yrs are seen enjoying outdoor play, followed by milk and biscuits.
Attention drawn to clothes pegs with animal motifs to make them easily recognisable to the young pre-school children.
Janice is shown the young boys class (Eagles) for 7 – 11yrs.
Jennifer sees the girls equivalent (Squirrels).
A Dining room for staff and students laid out for meals.
The small Chapel has hassocks sewn by students.
Youth Club for 14 – 18yrs with many different activities from Table Tennis to Drama.
Trained Instructors preside 4 nights a week.
Membership is 6d a week.
The two girls are then taken on home visits 1. Kitty Barnes a cripple/disabled lady, in a new block of flats/ newhousing estate who needs a member of the Settlement to help her to bed every night.
2. Mr Pickett who lives in a basement with his wife who works all day. He is seen lying in bed and the girls light his cigarette for him.
Back at the Settlement meals are being prepared for the Meals on Wheels service that is prepared for the infirm and housebound.
9m42s Van being loaded with the meals. Sign on van reads Meals on Wheels, Borough of Deptford. Presented by J.Stone and Co.(Deptford) Ltd.
Those more able-bodied queue for a good square meal for 10d.
After lunch there is a Mothers Club and on Tuesdays a Young Mothers Club with a Keep Fit class.
The Sunshine Club renowned for their singing has a Mr Dunning as pianist who is reputed to have taught the Duke of Norfolk the piano.
Upstairs the over 75s enjoy TV (old model and very flickery) a gift from the Father of schoolgirl who had stayed at the Settlement.
The film closes with the old people leaving, easily recognisable to friends and family.
The two schoolgirls say goodbye.
This film was first shown at the Royal Festival Hall on May 9th 1956 in the presence of HRH Princess Margaret to mark the Diamond Jubilee of the Union of Girls Schools for Social Service.

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