• Short Summary

    Wonderful footage of new town Stevenage - looks rather soulless from a modern perspective.

  • Description

    Stevenage, Hertfordshire.

    C/U of a sign which reads: "Buses Only - No Entry for Other Vehicles". Pan down to show the modern architecture of the town centre. Over shots of the the bus pulling into a stop the narrator explains how the new town's principle of not allowing cars into town leads to a refreshing lack of traffic congestion. Shot of the free car park - shoppers can leave their cars here and travel into the town centre by bus.

    Various shots of the shopping centre of the new town. Narrator observes: "Wherever one turns the outlook is gay and eye-catching" - it all looks rather grey and concrete bound really. C/Us of a sculpture in the town centre - Franta Belsky's (sp?) "Joyride". Continental kiosks contain colourful posters, a grandma shows her two young grandchildren. They walk around the "kiosk" which is covered with posters advertising idyllic countryside holiday destinations. This seems slightly ironic in the centre of what is supposed to be the greatest environment in the modern world.

    M/S of woman in a headscarf pushing a pram. Low angle of the street lighting. Various shots of shoppers walking through the town centre. C/Us of flowers in tubs and of details of architecture. Narrator talks of the spaciousness of the new town and compares it with the cramped back streets of many ordinary towns. The "rural look of Stevenage" has been retained (apparently) by leaving many of the original trees "apparently growing out of the concrete." Woman lifts her bike out of a bicycle rack - C/U of the rack - probably an innovative design at the time. C/U of the town fountain and various shots of the clock tower and houses. Narrator ends by saying "Here, then, is the design for living of the future. A town planned down to the last nail - planned to be lived in, by eighty thousand of the citizens of tomorrow."

    Note: great for showing the big hopes held for the "new towns". The place may look soulless but I like it!

  • Tags

  • Data

    Film ID:
    93.17
    Media URN:
    2497
    Group:
    Colour pictorials
    Archive:
    British Pathé
    Issue Date:
    20/07/1959
    Sound:
    Sound
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Stock:
    Colour
    Duration:
    00:02:24:00
    Time in/Out:
    01:38:39:00 / 01:41:03:00
    Canister:
    CP 241

Comments (1)

  1. Louise Dyce says

    Had to laugh at the commentary: "housewives" have a short step to the shops & "the rural look of Stevenage has been retained from the trees apparently growing out of the concrete" ~ top funny

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