More than 2500 British film and television programmes dating back to 1896 are to be made available to the public at the National Media Museum from today.
It’s part of the BFI Mediatheque, a free facility which opens up the BFI national archive, including a selection from the Yorkshire Film Archive.
Today’s launch includes a specially curated collection called God’s Own County: Yorkshire On Screen, with 100 film and television programmes from the Yorkshire and Humber area.
“Being Yorkshire born and bred and having worked in the city for many years, including at The National Media Museum, Bradford has a special place in my heart. It’s an incredibly vital city with a rich screen heritage alongside dynamic new film initiatives including an ambitious new partnership with whistling woods studio in Mumbai to create a film school in the city,” said Amanda Nevill, BFI chief executive.
“It’s a pleasure to announce that Bradford will be the seventh BFI Mediatheque across the UK, giving the people of Yorkshire free access to hours and hours of well loved and extraordinary lesser known treasures from our great national cinematic heritage.”
Films include a journey through Victorian Bradford in 1896; a Punch and Judy show in Halifax at the turn of the century; and Edwardian egg harvesters on Flamborough Head.
There are also home movies showing aviator, Amy Johnson who was born in Hull; a pilot episode of Last of the Summer Wine from 1973; and Alan Bennett’s Bust, as well as Brassed Off, Billy Liar and a number of documentaries including Queen Victoria’s visit to Sheffield in 1897.
“The BFI Mediatheque will give users their own viewing stations from which they can choose from a collection of more than 2,500 titles representing the history of cinema and television in this country, most of which cannot be seen anywhere else. It is the ideal addition to the Museum’s existing galleries which feature some of the most significant objects used in making television and cinema,” explained Michael Terwey, head of collections and exhibitions at the National Media Museum.
There are now BFI Mediatheques at Glasgow, London, Derby, Cambridge, Newcastle upon Tyne and Wrexham.
For a full list of all titles available to view go to www.bfi.org.uk/mediatheque