British Transport Films Collection Vol. 10 - London on the Move (2-DVD set)
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British Transport Films Volume 10 - London on the Move
Following the nationalisation of transport in 1948, the British Transport Commission set up its own in-house film production unit. Launched on 1st May 1949, and led for 25 years by Edgar Anstey a founding father of the British documentary movement it became one of the largest industrial film units in Britain.
British Transport Films Volume 10 London on the Move, marks a most welcome return for the BFI's celebrated and best-selling DVD series, and marks a shift in focus onto travel in the nation's capital.
Bringing together a number of fascinating and informative films themed around London Transport, this extensive 2-DVD set explores travel on the trams, buses and tube trains which have carried millions of visitors and residents alike around London every year.
- All that Mighty Heart (1963)
- Our Canteens (1951)
- One for One (1964)
- Cine Gazette No.14: Do You Remember? (1955)
- The Nine Road (1975)
- London on the Move (1970)
- Under Night Streets (1958)
- Power Signal Lineman (1953)
- Omnibus 150 (1979)
- Cine Gazette No. 10 (1951)
- Moving London (1983)
- AFC: Automatic Fare Collection and You (1969)
- Overhaul (1957)
Moving Millions (1947, 16 mins): A Central Office of Information film made by the Crown Film Unit illustrating the scope of London Transport activities at their most extensive including bus, underground, trams and trollybuses.
Fully illustrated booklet with an introduction by Patrick Russell and extensive film notes and credits
UK / 1951-1983 / black & white, and colour / 201 minutes / DVD9 x 2 / Ratio 1.33:1
Top customer reviews
These British Transport (BTF) Films cover the timeline running from 1951 to 1983, and follow the often complex task of keeping the capital's various forms of transport on the move. Some films provide an insightful look at the organisation & co-ordination behind the scenes, shedding light on what is often taken for granted, yet is far more complicated than a ignorant layman like myself ever imagined. Some films do possess a colourful, travelogue feel & are often a charming but informative way to unwind.
The remastered picture quality on the fourteen films (including the bonus feature) is generally good, there are no subtitles. Also included is an illustrated 12-page booklet with an introduction from Patrick Russell, along with full details of the films and credits. When including the bonus film, the collection has a running time of over three-and-a-half hours. The two discs & booklet are stored in a single-size DVD case. I have included a list of the titles along with a few details below....
*ALL THAT MIGHTY HEART (1963/colour/24 mins)....A dawn through to dusk look at the various passengers using the capital's rail & bus services, including a visit to the zoo, along with an evening visit to the theatre.
*OUR CANTEENS (1951,B/W,12 mins)....In this staff training film we also see the canteen ladies preparing & serving up hearty nosh for the transport staff.
*ONE FOR ONE (1964,B/W,24 mins)....A detailed account of the meticulous overhaul & inspection of London Transport's bus engines carried out by the workforce at Chiswick Works.
*THE NINE ROAD (1976/colour/20 mins)....A look at bus number 9 on one of the busiest bus routes in the capital, following the bus crews, organisation & maintenance teams through the long working day, as the bus travels along it's route between Liverpool Street and Mortlake.
*CINE GAZETTE No.14: DO YOU REMEMBER? (1955,B/W,9 mins)....A look at the sorting & returning of lost property on the capital's transport system.
*LONDON ON THE MOVE (1970/colour/14 mins)....A look at the increasingly complicated task of keeping London's transport system running efficiently in 1970, and the increased investment in automation & CCTV.
*UNDER NIGHT STREETS (1958,B/W,19 mins)....The nocturnal maintenance work carried out by the 1100-strong workforce on London's underground lines.
*POWER SIGNAL LINESMAN (1953,B/W,15 mins)....A training film for Power Signal Linesmen, showing routine maintenance while also providing an emergency response to various faults.
*OMNIBUS 150 (1979/colour/16 mins)....An history of the London Omnibus, from the 3-horse omnibus introduced in 1829, through to the hi-tech Daimler Fleet Lines.
*CINE GAZETTE No.10 (1951,B/W,10 mins)....Three short films in one: "Chiswick on The Skid Patch" - a visit to the bus drivers training area to see the cars from the 1951 London Motor Show at Earls Court. Then "Overhaul at Acton" - the stripping down, cleaning & renovation of London Transport's tube trains, followed by "Food Production Centre" - a blink-and-you'll-miss-it account of the preparation for the feeding of 100,000 transport staff for 1 week.
*MOVING LONDON (1983/colour/17 mins)....A retrospective look at the modernisation & expansion of London transport over the previous 50 years.
*AFC: AUTOMATIC FARE COLLECTION AND YOU (1969/colour/4 mins)....Part-animated film showing passengers being guided through the automated fare collection systems in Hammersmith station.
*OVERHAUL (1957/colour/17 mins)....London's fleet of 8,000 buses are put through an advanced overhaul at Aldenham. Dismantled & refurbished before returning to serve the public.
*BONUS FILM - MOVING MILLIONS (1947,B/W,16 mins)....A Central Office of Information (COI) film, aimed at an overseas audience. A simple account of the work of London Transport.
I had wondered whether the transport series had finished but then this was announced and I ordered it as soon as I could and has been delivered today.
A varied selection of films, covering the period from 1951 - 1983 and including some behind the scenes stuff as well as films aimed at the general public of the time (the automatic tickets short, for example). As well as the subject matter of London buses and tube there are a few shots of trolleybuses in action: but for me one of the really fascinating features are the people. Smoking while working, brylcreemed hair and most with a uniform including a peaked hat, apart from the occasional Inspector on the underground in a bowler hat.
I think parts of it will mainly interest those keen on transport but there is a lot of sociological and historical material for the non specialist top enjoy. Although centred around London Transport there were some shots which included the green buses from the outer area which extended as far south as Crawley and as far north as Luton.
I would recommend these DVDs especially with a nice roaring fire, cup of tea and some cake.
The sad part of it is looking at what we had and seeing how far we have regressed since then thanks to the governments of Britain post 1979 whose dogmatic belief in fragmentation and privatisation has wrecked a transport system which was the envy of the world, and has deprived two generations so far of young people of the opportunities to acquire skills and career opportunities.
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