Film: 6404

London | 1930 | Silent | B/W


The bright lights of London 1930's

Intertitle: 'These are the everyday spectacles of a metropolis - '
Intertitle: 'And the pageantry of night'.
Traffic lights go from red & amber to green (the words STOP and GO on the top and bottom lights). A triple street lamp. Traffic lights change. The street lamp.
Animated neon signs - a Gordon's gin bottle, and the head of a cock crowing. Piccadilly Circus lights, cars and buses passing; one sign says 'MONTE CA..', another 'FRANCO ANIMATE', with a swinging pendulum.
Pedestrians milling on pavement; illuminated neon signs say 'MONTE CARLO', 'FRANCO ANIMATED' and 'NONSTOP VARIETY'; a theatre or cinema has '..LTER HUSTON'.
Animated neon signs (VARIETY etc.); a double decker bus approaches, advert for Craven 'A' on side; followed by 121 bus with ad for Schweppes Cyder.
Huge theatre or cinema audience applauding.
Bus passes buildings with neon signs: 'HAIRDRESSING SALOONS' and '1/- TO 5/-' (with obscure graphic).
Statue silhouetted against night sky.
Moving text lights say ''..PORTED IN DISTRICTS IS NOW'.
Big Ben tower silhouetted against night sky. Silhouetted statue of man with sword.
Silhouetted Westminster building. Silhouetted equestrian statue.
Intertitle: 'The day begins'.
A black cat sniffs at two wide-necked bottles of milk left on some stairs.
Men in caps unload empty bins from lorry; at rear is billboard - looks like 'MR DRAGECOM' and something about opening early.
Police sergeant standing in archway flanked by large gas lamp brackets - building could be County Hall. A building raises roller shutters; gas lamp standard at L. A shopkeeper opens his door, viewed from inside; on wall is plaque saying 'NATIONAL PROVINCIAL BANK'; a man strides past in the street; a distant sign says 'MOWLEM'; man buffs brass plaques with a rag.
A milkman's handcart - '. . . DAIRIES BEST MILK'; milkman approaches with wire crate, puts it down, unhooks a large milk can, picks up a bottle, and walks off L; a child beside railings.
A woman in an apron, carrying a bucket, comes out of a building, kneels, and starts scrubbing the steps. An older woman, in an apron, sweeps the top of some steps, behind iron railings.
Intertitle: 'The parade of London river begins with the incoming tide'.
Flowing river water. Two men in cloth caps pull on a rope aboard a sailing boat. A two-masted sailing boat, and a smaller sailing boat, on the river, steamers in the distance. A man working half way up a tall mast, the large sail at R. Gulls rising from the river. The Union Flag flying at a mast head. Bow of ship DELATOYA comes in from L, filling screen. Tug 'WELLINGTON', towing lighters, passes R to L.
The bow of a fast-moving yacht, its anchor at centre; factory buildings in distance. A ship passes under a bridge, its funnel lowered. Tug passes L to R, towing lighters; three men on board, two in trilby-type hats; dockyard buildings and cranes behind.
Intertitle: 'The hurly-burly of the markets'.
Fish porters, two in caps, two in porters' flat hats; a porter approaches carrying a crate on his head. Intertitle: 'Billingsgate'.
Close-up of a fish porter turning, with crate carried on flat hat; filthy tunic. A man helps a porter lift a crate onto his head, he walks off; the man does the same for s second porter. Two shots of porter lifting box onto his head. Looking upwards as three laden porters walk past.
Intertitle: 'Covent Garden'. Numerous men carrying boxes and baskets on barrows to and fro, a large pile of boxes at centre rear. At Covent Garden, a porter carries three boxes on his head, L to R. A porter turns, with a heavy round basket on his shoulder. At left, a man packs apples in cardboard boxes; at R a man picks up a straw-filled box, in which are glimpsed what may be bananas. A man bending, selecting flowers from a wooden box, sitting on three other boxes on the ground. A hand lays a bunch of flowers in a tray with others.
Intertitle: 'In the city - the grand parade of business'.
A dark-coloured underground train emerges from below a building. Commuters' legs walking L to R; a bicycle passes R to L behind them. Commuters approach a bridge from R; a BOUTS BROS van passes L to R. Hundreds of commuters leave platform at rail terminus, walking towards us - fancy iron roof beams. Commuters in street walking towards us; most men are in trilbies; one young man in uniform; girl in cloche hat; several women hatless.
View towards National Gallery from St Martin's, buses passing. Trafalgar Square, looking towards Norway House, Nelson's Column at R; six omnibuses with open stairs drive away from us. Many high-sided cars driving away from us in street. Motor and pedestrian traffic on bridge (London Bridge, I think), seen from above. Looking down on commuters entering tube station. From below, commuters descending escalators.
Women clocking in. A large office, with concentric banks of desks. Rows of women working tabulating machines. Close-up of woman's hands pressing tabulating machine keys. Cylindrical rollers on a small machine apparently counting piles of (?) paper money. A candlestick telephone holder. Man speaking into it replaces the ear piece; outside his window is a statue; buses can be seen passing.
The busy floor of the Stock Exchange. Jobbers or brokers milling and gesticulating.
Mid-height view of a street market. Two young girls circle each other round a lamp post.
An auctioneer with a gavel, people in front of him.
A street huckster in waistcoat and necktie, apparently extolling the virtues of a pair of socks. Respectable-looking man smiles as he writes on a piece of paper.
Man apparently assessing the quality of some cloth, as others look on. A fat man in glasses smiles as he is offered some paper money, and makes a pencil note.
Intertitle: 'The pageant of fashion'.
People passing a smart store-front. Model walks down catwalk in black dress, with large feather fan. Seated woman at table, talking, behind flowers. Three women, two in hats, as one adjusts her coat; a man in a top hat talks to them.
A chauffeur-driven limousine; in back, a woman in a tiara - Queen Mary? - smiles as she looks out. A canopied walkway as a woman in a long dress approaches, another carrying her train; a man in what looks like an academic gown or judicial robes.
Intertitle: 'The pageant of work'.
A building site, with scaffolding; a man shovelling; a man comes in from L and tips up a wooden wheelbarrow; man in cloth cap walks towards us. Men attaching shackles and cables to a large object (about the size of a lorry trailer). Men milling on a station concourse, below a clock showing 4:12. On scaffolding half way up a building, a man apparently sandblasting the wall. A roofer climbs a ladder with a stack of tiles on his head. Masons at work on the roof, in braces and cloth caps. A fireman climbs through an upper-storey window with a hose; smoke billows from the window he enters. Operating theatre staff at work, clad all in white. A chef takes the lid off a large joint, and begins to carve it. A pavement artist at work, as people pass. A woman stops typing, stands to look out of the window, where another woman and a man join her. Massed crowds in the street - track past a statue with people hanging on to its pedestal.
Intertitle: 'But London has pageants all its own - '.
Street hung with flags and garlands. A float on a lorry (GR on a cab door) promoting AIR MAIL; a policeman walks beside it. Intertitle: 'The Lord Mayor's Show'.
Policeman accompanies film camera car, cameraman filming from standing position on roof. Lord Mayor's coach passes law courts in the Strand. Top-hatted coachman, with flowers. Lord Mayor in procession with mace-bearers. Two trumpeters on horseback.
Intertitle: 'The Trooping of the Colour'. A watching policeman, from behind. Guardsmen march past L to R. Cavalrymen parade L to R, from behind crowd. View down the Mall towards Admiralty Arch; police on horseback.
Intertitle: 'The opening of the Law Courts'. Man in cloth cap, with newspaper under his arm. Slow procession of judges. Equestrian statue of crowned man with raised sword. The clock of Big Ben, showing 2:55.
Intertitle: 'The Opening of Parliament'. Two lines of Guardsmen present arms, as mounted party passes. The state coach passes L to R. Small children watch from behind barrier fence. State coach passes Noel Bros shop and (St Stephen's?) Tavern, towards gates of Palace of Westminster. State coach approaches. Closer view - crowned queen visible inside; coach passes and enters palace.

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