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53 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Happy Days
This DVD is simply wonderful. For anyone who grew up in the fifties it will bring a lump to your throat as you spot all the old Humber Hawks and Ford Populars. There's not much of the railways in it despite the title but solid gold just the same. If you want a laugh, take a look at, "Cyclists Special" and listen to the commentary. It nearly did for me!!! Coast of Clyde...
Published on 5 Dec 2006 by JMD1

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Travelogue
I do not dislike this DVD but do not think it is up to much. It is a travelogue of different parts of Britain. The only relationship it has to trains is the odd glimpse of one in the background. Is it worth buying? - only if you want short travel documentaries of the fifties which have nothing to do with trains.
Published 13 months ago by Stephen Cryan


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53 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Happy Days, 5 Dec 2006
By 
JMD1 (Bute, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
This DVD is simply wonderful. For anyone who grew up in the fifties it will bring a lump to your throat as you spot all the old Humber Hawks and Ford Populars. There's not much of the railways in it despite the title but solid gold just the same. If you want a laugh, take a look at, "Cyclists Special" and listen to the commentary. It nearly did for me!!! Coast of Clyde means a great deal to me as I live exactly where the film was made. Sadly the old steamers are gone now but the beauty of the place still remains. "Glasgow Belongs to Me" dwelt rather too much on Rangers-Celtic thing but showed nonetheless, the grandeur of this wonderful city. Were things as happy and safe as these films tend to make us think? Probably not but just the same, being able to look back to the time of my happy childhood is a great privilege. I recommend this DVD without hesitation.
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42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Holidays as they used to be, 24 April 2006
By 
Amazon Customer (Bournemouth UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
An historical look at holidays in the 1950s before foreign travel was the norm and travelogue commentaries of an earlier age this release is also about nostalgia, and when it is as good as this why not.

The best film by far is "A letter for Wales" which like most of the more successful is presented through the eyes of an individual, in this case a Welshman posting a letter at Paddington Station for the Mail Train and reminiscing whilst he does so about his earlier life in Wales. The commentary does not date the use of black and white in Paddington Station and colour for the rest works extremely well, and there is a fine score composed by Grace Williams.

Also excellent is "The Coasts of Clyde" where a laconic Scots American travels by steamer around the islands from where his Grandmother immigrated to America. Again the commentary does not date, and most interestingly has a well recorded score by Humphrey Searle, charming and melodic and very different from his challenging symphonies I remember from many years ago.

Three other films stand out, "Capital Visit" the story of a school two day visit to London narrated through the eyes of the eleven year old children (includes Airport footage with wonderful propeller airliners before the advent of the Comet heralded the jet age), "Glasgow Belongs to Me" a loving look at the city and its people, and "Holiday" a reminder of the traditional family seaside holiday in the days before foreign travel.

All the music seems specially commissioned and conducted by the ubiquitous Muir Mattheson, and includes compositions by Vaughan-Williams, Doreen Carwithen (wife of William Alwyn whose music is only just being discovered), Elizabeth Lutyens (unfortunately the recorded sound is very poor), Spike Hughes and Grace Williams.

If you want a look at some aspects of 1950s leisure or are just nostalgic this is for you.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A treasure trove - and not just for railway buffs., 17 Feb 2011
By 
This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
I've bought 5 of the series so far, as well as Night Mail and Black Five (also by BFI), and they are equally delightful to watch again and again.

If you're old enough to remember the the earlier periods captured here you'll be thrilled to relive those magical days of steam and early diesel and electrics when there still appeared to be much enthusiasm for our railways from both govt and public alike. If you were too young, as I was, then these clever, well-made films are about as close as you can get to travelling back in time and witnessing it for yourself.

Although the films are primarily about railways, they're not really 'train-spotter' films, they capture mant everyday elements of a much broader social history of Britain in the mid-20th century, and feature everything from ladies' solo shopping trips to London, factory works' outings, holidays all round Britain, to the transportation of cattle from farms to the city restaurants.

They don't make films like these any more, and much is the pity. The BFI should be commended for releasing them. A real treasure trove.
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38 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nostalgia, 25 Jan 2006
By 
David A. Tuff "davethecine" (Bristol UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
The DVD contains a selection of superb films made by the British Transport Commission in the late 1940s and the 1950s to encourage the public to holiday in Britain.
Many were produced by one of the best documentary producers of his time, Edgar Anstey and the music is also by some of the best British composers of the time including Ralph Vaughan Williams.
Overall a wonderful nostalgic look at the Britain of yesterday, A treat not to be missed!
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete Delight, 24 Jan 2009
By 
Dr. David Griffiths (Perth, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
Yes P Carey, I'm afraid it is you. I'm fully with the majority here and no I don't drive a Morris Minor. These films are a delightful wallow in nostalgia and a charming eulogy for a long-gone way of life in a more innocent age. OK so some of the commentaries are a bit cheesy for modern ears but so what? These are period pieces for heaven's sake. Anyone who cheats on their spouse in 2009 is hardly going to sound like the characters in Brief Encounter!! I take the point about remastering but the mere fact that these wonderful films survived at all is good enough for me. A few minor blemishes don't detract from the overall pleasure.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 30 Jun 2014
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This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
Top notch
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3.0 out of 5 stars Travelogue, 5 Aug 2013
By 
Stephen Cryan "smcryan" (San Sebastian, Spain) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
I do not dislike this DVD but do not think it is up to much. It is a travelogue of different parts of Britain. The only relationship it has to trains is the odd glimpse of one in the background. Is it worth buying? - only if you want short travel documentaries of the fifties which have nothing to do with trains.
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4.0 out of 5 stars As things were., 19 Mar 2013
By 
Malcolm R. Toms (Stafford, England.) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
So evocative, just wonderful i love these old films from another era, the music can jar a little at times but it's a part of that era.
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16 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Golden Era, 25 Feb 2006
By 
cumbrian (CARLISLE, Cumbria United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
What a joy from beginning to end - BTC film production at its height and always a delight to see Teignmouth and the Dawlish Sea wall in all its glory - not that changed in 53 years (!) among the gems of 50's travel throughout Britain.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A taste of better times gone by, 2 Nov 2011
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This review is from: The British Transport Films Collection Volume 2 - See Britain By Train [DVD] (DVD)
Someone reviewed these discs and complained about there being hardly any railway, especially steam railway, content.
That's as may be but the films featured are a marvellous snap-shot of times gone by - you'd hardly credit that they were made in this country, they could have been made a million years ago!
Watching these films made me very nostalgic and provided a useful benchmark in determining how, in comparison to today, (I think,) life has diminished in this country.
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