Cat no. 1155

East Anglia Today

Running time11:36 Colour Sound 1984 East Anglia, Suffolk

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Profile of East Anglia, the old and the new, including shots of Cromer, Cambridge, Norwich and Felixstowe representing education, tourism, transport, industry, and heritage.


Portrait of a Place

A montage of shots representing the varying character of the region: a ferry approaching Harwich, a busy trunk road, agricultural scenes, a train, a modern building and the beach at Cromer with the Pier in the background. The commentary establishes the geographical area as Norfolk and Suffolk as well as large parts of Cambridgeshire and Essex and increasingly parts of the home counties. The montage of shots continues, showing cows grazing in a field, the Quay at Mistley, a windmill, a Broadlands pub and horse racing at Newmarket.

A sequence on Cambridge shows Kings Parade and Kings College. Continuing the theme of education, there are interior shots of a laboratory at the University of Essex and exterior shots of the University of East Anglia, including the Sainsbury Centre. Another of Sir Norman Foster's buildings at Ipswich, home to the Willis Caroon Insurance Company, is featured. Shoppers on Gentleman's Walk in Norwich and then of the Eastern Counties Motor Company in Cromer. This illustrates the theme that East Anglia has the highest number of cars per head in the United Kingdom. Workmen building Chevalier Road in Ipswich are shown followed by a shot of the Orwell Bridge.

The next sequence opens with shots of the port of Felixstowe. There are interior scenes of Ransomes at Ipswich, Britvic at Chelmsford, Jarrolds at Norwich and the Lotus car factory at Hethel to the south of Norwich. These are contrasted with more traditional industries, including a small scale wood working factory at Little Welnetham near Bury St. Edmunds. Here the last surviving employee, Noel Cullen, makes wooden tools and other small domestic items. He has been employed by the firm for 37 years. At one stage 32 people were employed.

There are interior shots of the BBC studios at Norwich and exterior shots of the Anglia Television buildings; the former Agricultural Hall and the former Post Office.

On the East Anglian coast, the Magnox nuclear reactor, Sizewell A is featured. At Snape Maltings, the paperwork for the Public Enquiry into the Sizewell B Pressurised Water Reactor is shown. This was already the longest running public enquiry ever held.

Returning to the theme of transport, a train arrives at Colchester Station. People alight. There is a shot along the railway lines showing workmen carrying out repairs, followed by a shot of house building at Mistley, in what had become the East Anglian commuter belt. There is a shot of the village of Wrabness in Essex, showing exterior and interior shots of the village shop. This is contrasted with the Bowthorpe estate in Norwich. Here there are shots of the Sainsburys' supermarket in the shopping centre and of factories on the adjacent industrial estate. At Lowestoft, there are boats in the port and there are shots of the town. Ted Frost shows his graphic illustrations of the work of the shipwrights of Lowestoft. These were produced for a book entitled 'From Tree To Sea'. They were later to feature in an exhibition at the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich.

The film ends with shots of agriculture, emphasising how modern machinery combines with old methods. Shots of a tractor at work and of men weeding sugar beet by hand. New crops are emphasised; sugar beet and oil seed rape. The final scenes are of the harvest and of a combine harvester.

Featured People:

Noel Cullen, wood worker; Sir Norman Foster (c); Ted Frost, maritime illustrator

Featured Organisations:

Anglia Television, Norwich; Port Of Felixstowe; Audio Visual Centre, UEA; Ransomes, Ipswich; BBC East, Norwich; Sainsburys plc; Britivic, Chelmsford; University of Cambridge; East Anglian Film Archive University of East Anglia; Eastern Counties Motor Company, Cromer; University of Essex; Jarrolds, Norwich; The Willis Caroon Insurance Company; Lotus, Hethel

Featured Buildings:

Anglia Television, Norwich; Orwell Bridge, Ipswich; BBC Studios, Norwich; Ransomes, Sims And Jeffries, Nacton Works; Britvic Factory, Chelmsford; Sainsbury Centre, Norwich; Cliff Quay Power Station, Ipswich; Sainsbury's Supermarket, Bowthorpe, Norwich; Colchester Railway Station; Sizewell A; Cromer Pier; Snape Maltings; Jarrolds Factory, Norwich; University Of East Anglia; Kings College, Cambridge; University Of Essex; Lotus Car Works, Hethel; The Willis Caroon building, Ipswich;

University of East Anglia Audio-Visual Centre

East Anglian Film Archive

David Cleveland

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