News from 50 years ago to be screened at Norwich cinema

Rare original film footage which captures some of the big national and regional stories from more than 50 years ago is to go on show at a special cinema screening tomorrow.

A selection of footage from Anglia Television's news archive, dating from 1959, have been crafted into a documentary-style film by Norwich-based Timereel Studios for a special one-off show called Here Was the News, Part 1.

Visitors to Cinema City in Norwich will be able to see footage of Princess Margaret's marriage to the Earl of Snowdon which attracted 300 viewers worldwide at the time.

The 90-minute film also contains footage of a feature on RAF Coltishall presented by Hughie Green of Opportunity Knocks fame, while other news items covered include whether new flats would ruin Frinton, if Norfolk should have an open prison, why people were using supermarkets and if women talk more than men.

Andrew Gray, founder of Timereel Studios, a film production company which uses original archive footage to create films showing how the lives of ordinary people were affected by extraordinary events, said: 'In 1959, the only source of news in our region was local newspapers until Anglia Television launched and brought regional news to television sets for the first time.

'Being able to find original footage from this era is very rare, as much of it did not survive beyond original broadcast. However, the clips that we have managed to gather and carefully edit into what is a two-part series allow us a wonderful insight into how people lived half a century ago, and events that were grabbing the headlines back then.'

The screening, which will be shown at 11.30am, follows on from the success of previous Timereel archive screenings at Cinema City and will be the first time Here Was the News has been shown on the big screen.

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Here Was The News Part 2, the follow up to part one being screened tomorrow, is scheduled to be shown at Cinema City on Saturday, January 8.

The second in this two-part series showcases yet more headlines from 1960; from the last steam train, to the first go-kart: another instalment giving an insight into how life across the region changed during this era.

Mr Gray said being able to look back on news footage from that era was strange in that it highlighted both the differences and the similarities in the eras in equal measure. He said: 'It does two things that contradict each other. On the one hand it shows us how so much has changed and at the same time demonstrates to us that some things have not changed at all. For example, pub opening hours and should pubs be able to open for longer was one of the items. People are coming up with the same problems and these sort of debates year after year.'

Much of the footage was light-hearted, but Mr Gray said that much of it would make viewers sit back and thing 'wow, I never realised that or knew that'.

Timereel Studios, based at the Henderson Business Centre, Ivy Road, Norwich, has developed a collection of atmospheric films reminding viewers of historical milestones in East Anglia from life on the Norfolk Coast in the 1920s to Anglia at War.

It has also produced several films about the capital, including Haunted London and London's East End in the 1900s to 1930s.

To see more pictures from Anglia Television's news footage of 1959 log onto www.edp24.co.uk

All Timereel Studios films are available on DVD. For more information on the range of titles available or to place an order please visit www.timereelstudios.co.uk