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    "Produced by Pathe Pictures Ltd for the Red Cross and St John War Organisation."

    Photography by Vivian Brann, Edited by Gerald Landau, Recording Supervised by W.S. Bland, Commentary written by Alec Bristow, Spoken by John Slater.

    Low angle shot of plane flying through the sky. Two women in St John's Ambulance uniform look up at the plane. As do two men in army uniform. About 20 women in uniform run towards Red Cross ambulances which are lined up - two dogs run along with them. The RAF plane comes in to land. Red Cross ambulance is driven towards the airfield. It backs up towards the open doors of the aircraft. C/U of the open door of the ambulance. Painted on side of the door: "War Organisation of the British Red Cross Society and Order of St John. M/Ss and C/Us of returning wounded being lifted out of the plane on stretchers. They are lifted onto the ambulance. Other men are helped from the aircraft. M/S of several Red Cross Ambulances being driven through a village street. C/U of street sign: "Halt at Major Road Ahead". Ambulances cross a bridge. L/S of ambulances driving through a country landscape. Voice-over observes that some people make jokes about women drivers, this makes him ashamed - "we know now what the wounded owe to the Red Cross and St John's Girls who have taken on a man's job."

    C/U of a sign pointing to the Ambulance Railhead. Ambulance drives in. Sergeant with a clipboard walks up to the ambulance and talks to the female driver. C/U of them talking. Panning shot of long row of ambulances. Another female driver leans out of her cab and is given directions by a soldier. High angle shot of some trains at a standstill. C/U of soldier beckoning ambulances. Camera follows an ambulance as it drives towards the trains. C/U of a nurse leaning out of a train window. Camera pans down to show inscription on side of train carriage: "The cost of equipping and maintaining this Train has been borne by the War Organisation of the British Red Cross Society and Order of St. John of Jerusalem."
    M/S of the doors of an ambulance being opened. C/U of some of the girl ambulance drivers being handed a jug. Injured men on stretchers are carried from the ambulances onto the train - various shots including men being made comfortable inside the train carriage. High angle shot of the women drivers carrying trays with tea things on them. They climb onto the train with the tea and biscuits. C/U of a woman in uniform offering a man a cup of tea. Another of the women lights injured men's cigarettes for them. It is the little things like this that matter to the injured men.

    C/U of St John's Ambulance Brigade insignia on a woman's uniform. Camera tilts up to her face as she laughs and chats. Injured man smiles as she chats to him. C/Us of him lying in bed smoking. St. John's Ambulance woman does some paperwork.

    Various shots of the train - the wheels, the engine, steam emerging from the funnel etc. Train moves off. Train passes the camera - large Red Cross insignia on the side of the train. Wounded man looks out of the window then at a photograph of his wife. He reminisces and thinks about how his wife will come to meet him. L/S of his wife stepping out of a wooden building with a suitcase in her hand. She looks up at the sun. She walks down a path then down a country road. She walks through a wood in fairly high heels.

    M/S of the Red Cross train. Interior of the train. The men are asleep in their special bunks. Train turns a corner. The men are given cups of tea. Voice-over talks of how hard it must have been before the Red Cross and St Johns were around. View from the window of the train. M/S of the wounded man's girlfriend stands and admires the scenery - forest, waterfall, etc. She sighs. Railway tracks are superimposed over an image of her looking wistful.

    C/U of a soldier wearing a Red Cross arm band giving a wounded man a penicillin injection. C/U of a label being attached to something (a bag?) - the label reads: " PEN." - for penicillin I assume.

    L/S of the man's sweetheart walking across a bridge then towards the camera. She walks alongside the railway tracks. The train arrives at the station. C/U of a sign - partly obscured - "...mpton) Hospital." M/S and C/U of Red Cross nurses tending to the injured man in a hospital bed. C/U of a St John's Ambulance Liaison Officer smiling as she sees our man's wife. The wife puts on her coat and goes to meet the Liaison Officer, she takes her suitcase and shakes her hand. They get into a car. They arrive at the "Red Cross & St. John Joint War Organisation Relative's Hostel." The woman shakes hands with the landlady and goes inside. L/S of the hospital. The man's girlfriend is shown to his bedside. He is asleep. He wakes up and sees his loved one - they smile at each other. They kiss. C/U of her hand gripping his arm. She wears a wedding ring. St John's Ambulance woman smiles and leaves them to it!

    L/S of exterior of hospital. Man who has lost his leg walks with crutches. Interior of hospital, a man is helped through an archway into the open air by two nurses. L/S of the nurses helping him walk through the gardens - his eyes are bandaged. L/S of large number of patients being led through the garden on a walk by nurses. Shot of a Red Cross nurse walking with a patient has many other images from the film superimposed over it - aircraft, tea trays, train, "PEN" label, "Relative's Hostel" sign, nurses helping wounded men to walk in the hospital grounds, etc. M/S of the nurse and the man whose story we have been following walking towards the camera. He is now back in uniform "Walking forward into the future - out of battle". Nurse walks towards the camera until the screen is filled with the Red Cross sign on her uniform. Narrator states that the work of the Red Cross and St John will go on "until man ceases to go to war." Film ends.

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  • Data

    British Pathé
    Issue Date:
    Media URN:
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Film ID:
    Black & White
    Time in/Out:
    01:50:54:00 / 02:01:03:00
    Sort Number:
  • Appears in...

    Lifestyle & Culture Travel & Exploration War & Revolution Religion & Politics
    medicine random interest Long March WW2: Trains British Red Cross group Documentaries (1976) Documentary warning Long documentary A detailed look
  • Stills

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

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