Star Item
  • Description

    Royal Festival Hall Pier, River Thames, London.

    Tilt up from the feet of a girl, Susan Aveyard (aged 15) being helped into a sack by Mark Shaw. Susan is wearing a yellow hooded rubber suit. C/U of a spectator and his little girl. C/U of Shaw fastening the top of the sack around Susan's neck. M/S of Shaw tying rope around Susan. They are standing on the bank of the River Thames and in the background is a crowd of spectators. M/S of spectators leaning over a rail. M/S of Susan trussed up with rope and sacking jumping from the top of some stone stairs into the murky water below. Tilt down to follow Susan's impact into the water - she bobs up almost immediately. The narrator reveals that Shaw, from Morecambe in Lancashire, has invented the lifesaving jacket worn by Susan - "a new system that's so efficient it's impossible to drown - even in a sack"! The narrator explains that the jacket - named the 'Marksway' - is lined with a special cotton fabric which "when dry allows air to circulate freely and when wet immediately traps the air". C/U of Shaw speaking through a loud hailer. M/S of someone in a dark life suit jumping from a high balcony, possibly part of the structure of a bridge, into the Thames. C/U of a middle aged woman watching. C/U of a trussed up Susan grinning as she is pulled to shore by a male swimmer. M/S of spectator's watching from a footbridge. M/S of Susan, her father (Arthur) and a boy, Leslie Greenbank (aged 9), sitting on the edge of the balcony jutting over the river. They jump off the balcony into the river. C/U of Susan, still smiling, floating on her back. C/U of Leslie floating on his back also wearing one of the new jackets. C/U of Arthur wearing an mackintosh over his lifejacket - he is floating on his back smoking a cigarette and reading a newspaper - the narrator points out that "once in the water - even if a person is unconscious, the system ensures that he or she will always float upwards - in fact, all we need is a little outboard motor and we're in the boat business"!

    Please note mute neg for this item is in poor condition (cell and emulsion scratches).

  • Tags

  • Data

    British Pathé
    Issue Date:
    Media URN:
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Film ID:
    Time in/Out:
    01:19:37:00 / 01:20:38:00
    CP 246
    Sort Number:
    CP 246
  • Appears in...

    Lifestyle & Culture Science & Technology
    The Ones
  • Stills

    0:01 0:02 0:03 0:04

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