Film: 8045

Social History | 1960 | Sound | Colour


Cardiff , Wales and the Empire Swimming Pool. Fashionable 1960's women go for a day's pampering at the Turkish bath and beauty treatments such as massage. They have tea and biscuits wrapped in towels, beehives never out of place throughout. Leisure, health.

Shots of Cardiff City Hall, Cardiff Civic Centre with clock tower and park, traffic, couple sitting on bench, bus passes, blossoms on tree, Alexandra Gardens, couple taking photographs, spring flowers, magnolias. Cardiff Castle, built by Bute family, people walking across drawbridge. Cardiff College of Music and Drama. Traffic driving past castle. Castle grounds, trees. Train pulling in to Cardiff Central station, railway.
Shot of sea, small church, fishing boats. Large ship at Cardiff docks, Haparangi, lots of ships, boats. Aircraft, aeroplane lands on runway at Cardiff Airport, control tower, aeroplane propellers.
Aerial shot of street, buses, parked cars, pedestrians, cyclist, woman with pushchair. Buses and cars in Wood Street. Wales Empire Pool, building, doors, traffic passing. Men walking past building. Car parking in street, close up of number on registration plate.
A woman with a blonde beehive hairstyle and another woman get out of the car and go into the pool building, wearing high heels and coats, a group of men are waiting outside the pool. The women enter the foyer and walk up to the reception desk. Men wearing suits stand at the bottom of the stairs, talking. Virginia and her friend go up the stairs, carrying bags, they stop and look at the wall with names of councillors engraved, then walk along the corridor with tiled floor, to a kiosk and buy chocolate. They go through a door with a sign saying Turkish Baths and Ladies Day. An attendant gives them towels, they sit down and are then shown to the individual changing rooms with lamps. Virginia's friend removes her scarf, shoes (stilettos), and puts them in a wooden locker. The attendant shows another woman into a changing cubicle. Virginia is wearing a red towel, she locks the wardrobe (locker) and puts the key with elastic strap over her wrist. The women come out of the changing cubicles and Ira stands on a weighing scales. Women all with towels wrapped around them sit in a lounge with armchairs, vase of flowers. The attendant shows them to the shower cubicles, Ira drinks water from a drinking fountain, a woman is wearing a shower cap. Showers, pipes. Ira is laying on a wooden bench, women on deckchairs in sauna, close ups of their faces looking happy and relaxed, 1960s make up. Woman on bench being soaped by masseuse. Massage, jet shower, women trying not to laugh. Plunge bath, tiled pool, attendant wraps towels around the women. Ira stands on scales again. Virginia steps into Aerotone therapeutic bath, jacuzzi, bubbles, attendant turns controls. Ira takes a foam bath, smiling.
Women standing in front of bathroom mirrors, brushing and combing hair, putting on make up, face powder, lipstick. Sugar from sugar bowl being spooned into tea, women sit in lounge and attendant carries tray of tea and biscuits. Women still wearing towels, one is smoking a cigarette. Women sleeping on couches in cubicles.
Swimming pool with lanes, someone diving in. Seats in viewing area.
Virginia and Ira are dressed again, they walk through a door, fire extinguisher on the wall. Man in swimming trunks, Ian Black, champion swimmer, dives into pool and swims front crawl. Women in viewing area watch him swim. Swimming pool with lots of children playing, wearing swimming hats and caps, rubber rings, the pool is crowded. Children dive into pool. Tiles on floor and walls. Family in swimming costumes walk to pool, past door to Mens toilets. Shot of swimming pool.
The women leave the pool building, get into the car and drive off.

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