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Birmingham The Way We Were


Revisit the Bull Ring of old with its street traders, flower sellers and the Market Hall, with and without its roof. Relive the heyday of the tram with some remarkable colour film. The motor car soon took over and we hitch a ride around the city centre in the 1950’s, when New Street was still open to traffic, and Dale Forty and Lewis’s were in their pomp.

Our film collection also shows the huge diversity of the city’s industries and that working conditions in the 30’s and 40’s were rather different from today. We have early film of a host of small manufacturers and giants like the Austin, Dunlop and Cadburys.

Wartime films include the ‘evacuation of city children, extraordinary footage of ARP wardens in action and street celebrations for VE Day. Royal occasions were a popular subject for early film makers and we see Brummies turn out in force for the Coronation of George VI, the Kings visit in 1948, and the visit of Princess Elizabeth in 1951.

Marbles in the street, sledging on the Lickeys and strolls in Cannon Hill Park are among the other film highlights included and all are accompanied by a lively commentary to set the scene.