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Rare and historic film from 1920s

Friday, 4 August 2017

A rare and historic film made at Hebden Bridge Carnival Parade and Gala in 1925 is being restored and will be shown again at the Picture House.

1925 film

Click photo to enlarge

The film was believed to have been lost or destroyed but, thanks to detective work by Yorkshire Film Archive, it has now been found. Thirty minutes of footage is being transferred from celluloid to 'screen ready' digital format and it is hoped the restored film will be shown as part of Heritage Open Day at the Picture House on 9 September. It will be the first time it has been publicly screened since the 1920s.

The project to conserve the film is being supported by grants from Hebden Bridge Local History Society, the Friends of the Picture House, Hebden Royd Town Council and public donations.

1925 film

Click photo to enlarge

The film, which shows crowds of cheering people lining the decorated streets of Hebden Bridge to enjoy the parade, was originally made to be screened at the Picture House as a way of attracting local audiences. FOPH chairman Paul Knights said, "People would have gone to the cinema in 1925 to see if they could spot themselves on the screen. The film is part of the heritage of the Picture House and it's important that it comes back to Hebden Bridge where it belongs. We are sure there will be a lot of local interest it in and we are grateful for the support of the Town Council and the Local History Society."

Committee member Mike Troke said that the film had been traced to a private owner in Lancashire. "It's a delightful piece of film and we're very pleased that it has been found. The carnival and parade were obviously the highlight of the social calendar in Hebden Bridge, the streets are packed with people and going to see the film was a bit like the social media of the 1920s."

A trailer is currently being shown at most Picture House screenings inviting people to donate to the project, which is expected to cost up to £1,500, and it is intended that the film will also form part of the Picture House centenary celebrations in 2021. Details of how to donate are available at Hebden Bridge Picture House.