London | 1930 | Silent | B/W
mixture of Thames and London scenes
1. Title card 'Henley Regatta 1896. Present day users of punts will observe with interest the number of rowing boats in use at that time.' Sketch of couple in punt at bottom. She in hat and with parasol, he in boater and rowing. Followed by actual footage of a number of punts on the water with men in shirtsleeves, bow ties, and boaters. Women in full dress ensemble and hat. As a punt passes the camera, we can see one of the men standing. Another passes by being punted by a man in shirtsleeves, waistcoat, and cap. His male passenger is seated in suit and boater. 1920s - Shot from riverside where men in blazers and white trousers view the scenes on the water. Many other spectators, including a number of women, are sitting in deck chairs facing the river. A two-tier building can be seen in the background on the other side of the river. It would appear from the ladies' fashion that this clip is from the late 1920s. Scene from behind group of men, women, and children. Shot shows boats being rowed on water by two men. Probably double sculls race, again from 1920s. Still of two men aboard early Edwardian motor car.
2. 1940s - Cut to card 'The Thames, centre of English life and English History'. Camera on vessel travelling down the Thames. Houses on bank and moored vessels can be seen. Shot of ornate bridge, probably the one by Hampton Court. Another card 'Hampton Court, Tudor Palace of Henry VIII.' Clear shot of outside of Hampton Court Palace before some boating houses next to the Thames with small craft moored. Sunbury Lock - an interesting interlude. Shot of lock as craft moves towards it. Young man on bank of lock pulls mooring rope of craft. Another shot of lock and cascading water. Same young man and an older male in naval peaked cap operating winding mechanisms of lock. Another shot of water around lock before shot of older man opening the lock by turning a wheel. As the lock walls open, we see a small launch moored on the backside. Close-ups of the hanging tree foliage touching the water's edge. We see another moored launch and bankside house.
'Staines Bridge - built in 1834.' Vessel moves towards Staines Bridge as vehicles can be seen driving across the top. The vessel passes under the bridge before camera is focussing on two swans on the water.
'Magna Charter Island, Birthplace of English Liberty.' Passing shot of church and its weather vane can be seen. 'Windsor Castle - A Royal residence since William the Conqueror.' Shot of one of the turrets of the castle as the vessel passes by. Next, we see a rowing team on the water followed by people boarding punts at the water's edge. Shot of Windsor Castle in the background as the vessel moves off down the Thames past a sailing craft with a man and a woman aboard. Some more swans on the water before 'Maidenhead Bridge - erected 1772.' Panning shot of ornate house and bridge before vessel passes underneath. 'Boulter's Lock- venue of countless yachts and boats.' Drift towards lock under small pedestrian bridge. 'Henley - the mecca of boaters.' Church towers the skyline in the background as the vessel moves towards boat house on one side and breakwaters on the other. A rowing vessel can be seen in the water. Panning shot of riverbank and another bridge before 'Oxford and our journey's end'. Punts on river and moored barges at edge. Shot of bridge from bankside as two people cycle along path. (02.55)
3. 1930s New clip of film 'Old Father Thames' across head and shoulders of man. Musical short. Vessel passes palace on bankside. Next is a steamer passing by. Long shot of factory at water's edge. Large chimney stack dominates skyline, as two tugs travel on the water. Vessel passes tug pulling two barges. A steamer ship called Balteano passes by. Long shot of a number of vessels on the water. Craft passes barge being rowed by two lightermen. Another steamship passes by before we see Tower Bridge on the horizon. Shot of columned buildings on the other side. Shot of bridge in distance as vessel pulls away before entering dock area with its jibs and loaded barges. Another building shown on the bankside and some rowing boats on the water. Shot from under a bridge before long shot down the river with the Tower of London in the background. Another long shot of a bridge across the Thames and then palatial-style buildings.
New clip 'London Bridge is Falling Down.' Another musical short. Crowds of people walking across London Bridge. Shot of people leaning and looking over bridge. We see a large ship moored below before a close-up of people crossing the bridge. Men and women alike, in suits, bowler hats, raincoats, carrying umbrellas. Shot from other side of bridge, then horse guards disappearing down arch.
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