No titles. 'Bygones.'
M/S of street sign: 'Wardour Street'. General view of traffic and pedestrians on Wardour Street in Soho. Several shots of film company signs on buildings - Columbia-Warner, Rank, Paramount, Embassy, Hammer, English Film Company. C/U of Pathe cockerel trademark (graphic). Archive footage: Charles Pathe looking at a reel of film with another man; C/U of hand-cranked camera; Queen Victoria in a coach; cricketer WG Grace; Suffragette campaigns; Emily Davison throwing herself under the King's horse during the Derby. (Note: Emily Davison is commonly misspelt Emily Davidson).
C/U of sign on wall: 'Library Cataloguing Room'. A woman sits at a desk, typing. Pathe's chief librarian Harry Wynder comes walking out of the vaults carrying some film cans, and walks along an outdoor walkway to another part of the building. He talks of Pathe's history and place in the film industry. A woman looks in a filing cabinet drawer at the card index. Stills of newsreel cameramen in action. Archive footage of disguised Pathe cameraman filming at 1924 Wembley Cup Final with camera disguised as a large (West Ham) hammer. Harry sits at a Steenbeck and talks about the Hindenburg disaster. Archive footage of same. Street scenes and unemployed people in documentary film about housing (1920s and 1930s). Slums, families eating at table inside, getting into bed. Prince of Wales touring slum areas. Dunkirk retreat secretly filmed by Pathe camera Charles Martin.
Harry talks of music hall stars being filmed in the Pathe studios in the 1920s and 1930s. Cut to Gus Elen singing 'Half A Pint Of Ale'. Harry's favourite piece of film - a bomber plane being launched in 1942 where Bess Truman has a lot of trouble smashing the bottle against the nose of the plane. Tracking shot through the vaults; a man sits at a bench in the corner, cementing a join on a piece of leader. Then we see Pathe's own lovely Larry McKinna, looking at a piece of film against the light, while wearing a fetching red jumper. Two men look at footage on a Steenbeck. Archive footage of John Logie Baird in his television workshop. Early Pathe colour footage (from 1908?) showing a tiny dancing girl being let out of an egg by another girl, then being put back in.