A small selection of films about internationally famous people connected with the East of England region, or filmed when visiting. Many famous names appear in the regional television collections, including news, dramas and documentaries. These are the people appearing in front of the camera, but the archive collection as a whole reflects the work of many film makers and television companies of this region whose work reached a national or international audience.
1919 Cat no. 295
Funeral Of Nurse Edith Cavell
1919, Norwich (Norfolk)
Edith Cavell, a British Nurse working in Belgium, was tried and shot by the German Army in 1915 for assisting the escape of British and allied soldiers. This provoked international condemnation. After the war ended, her body was brought back to her home county of Norfolk for burial on Life’s Green next to Norwich Cathedral. The solemn procession was filmed by George Swain for his father’s photographic company so it could be shown in a Norwich cinema. The film is unedited and still as filmed on the day.
Cat no. 295
Black and White, silent
1949 Cat no. 1695
Bernard Shaw's Village
1949, Ayot St Lawrence (Hertfordshire)
Still active in his 90s, dramatist and socialist George Bernard Shaw is shown entertaining his neighbours and friends including Danny Kaye at his home in Ayot St Lawrence where he had lived since 1906. This film was made for audiences at small film shows, including mobile cinemas and village hall shows which were popular in the 1940s and 1950s until television became widespread.
Cat no. 1695
Black and White, sound
1949 Cat no. 881
Country Magazine No. 1
1949, Norfolk (Norfolk)
George Formby, musical star, and his wife Beryl attend a Norfolk speedway event and wish the film makers good luck with their new cine magazine for small audiences (though the second issue was never released). The next story is about Iron Age treasure discovered in Norfolk; keep watching for the final musical sequence with the Harmony Pioneers.
Cat no. 881
Black and White, sound
1959 Cat no. 8444
Sir Winston Churchill Opens Churchill College
1959, Cambridge (Cambridgeshire)
A silent amateur film record of Sir Winston Churchill, by then in his 80s and declining in health, visiting the Cambridge college recently established in his name.
Cat no. 8444
1960 Cat no. 213904
1960, Lavenham (Suffolk)
Local television provided a training ground for many presenters and entertainers who became national figures. Here, David Dimbleby reports on a Suffolk village for regional news magazine ‘About Anglia’. He was working as a journalist for Anglia Television during his Oxford University vacation.
Cat no. 213904
Black and White, sound and mute
1964 Cat no. 208281
Interview With Morecambe And Wise
1964, Great Yarmouth (Norfolk)
Surreal brilliance from Eric Morecambe and Ernie Wise as the Anglia Television interviewer Newman Sanders tries to get a straight answer from the comedians currently appearing in a show on Wellington Pier, Yarmouth.
Cat no. 208281
Black and White, sound
1975 Cat no. 139135
Veterans Of The USAF 2nd Air Division On A Nostalgic Pilgrimage To Some Of The Former Airfields From Which They Flew Their Missions
1975, Duxford (Cambridgeshire)
American actor James Stewart had a distinguished military career as an Air Force pilot during the Second World War, and later in Vietnam. Anglia Television followed him as he returned to the East Anglian region for the veteran reunions and remembrances of 1975.
Cat no. 139135
1967 Cat no. 756
The Singing Postman
1967, Norfolk (County)
Allan Smethurst, The Singing Postman, performs some of his best known songs. This colour film was made to promote the Singing Postman to wider audiences, and his songs competed with The Beatles in the charts, but his core audience continued to be those who shared his home region and dialect.
Cat no. 756
1971 Cat no. 207266
Ovaltine Autumn Tour: Norwich Welcomes Muhammad Ali
1971, Norwich (Norfolk)
“The Greatest” boxer Muhammad Ali charms local people as he autographs cans in a Norwich supermarket. This thoughtful and funny interviewee shares his life philosophy and explains why he is endorsing Ovaltine drink.
Cat no. 207266
1981 Cat no. 5099
The Pace-Setters: Clive Sinclair
1981, Cambridge (Cambridgeshire)
In this half hour BBC East television profile, the versatile entrepreneur Clive Sinclair, based in Cambridge, talks about his upbringing and career, and some of his inventions including his pocket calculator, pocket television, personal computer and proposed design for an electric car.
Cat no. 5099