Cat no. 163

Regional Geography: The Wheatlands of East Anglia

Running time17:48 Black & White Sound 1936 Suffolk

An informative account about the production of wheat.



The flat and dry nature of East Anglia is explained with the assistance of relief maps and general views. An animated sequence shows how rain falls from clouds on the hills on the western side of Britain. Horse ploughing is shown and the process explained. It is described as a skilled and hard job. It is explained that wheat grows well in the heavy soil of East Anglia. A man wearing a bowler hat and smoking a pipe is shown ploughing with a Fordson Standard tractor and a two-furrow trailer plough. The harrowing, with a horse team, follows a few weeks later. A three horse Smythe steering drill is loaded and seen worked by a team of three men. A time lapse sequence shows wheat grain germinating and growing up to the point of coming through the soil. Two weeks' growth are shown in a few seconds. An animated sequence shows snow clouds coming from the East and then shows a snow-covered field.

In March, fields are rolled and harrowed with horse teams. The state of the corn in May is shown, then the ripe corn in July. Harvesting is shown using a tractor drawn Massey Harris tanker combine. Sacks of wheat are shown being transported by horse and cart from the farm to the village, by lorry and then (briefly) by barge. The importance of rivers for transport is stressed using maps of Norwich as an example. There are views of Norwich, including the River Wensum at New Mills, the Castle, Shire Hall, and the Cattle Market. There are exterior and interior shots of the Corn Hall, the latter showing a general view of the merchants stalls and then a sale being agreed at one stall. The Customs and excise notice is highlighted as reads thus. The place appointed for making and delivering corn returns within this town, is the Corn Market, where an Officer Of Customs And Excise will attend as inspector of Corn Returns on the days as such Accounts and Returns are required by law to be made.

The film introduces the agricultural machinery business and then shows chickens and pigs being fed corn on the farm. The scene shifts to Peasenhall Windmill which is shown in action; the sails are turning and the milling process is shown. At the end are shots of an unidentified hand cutting slices off a loaf of bread.

Featured Buildings:

Peasenhall Windmill; Norwich Castle; The Corn Hall, Norwich; Shire Hall, Norwich

Gaumont British Instructional

Mary Field

Gordon Pocknall

George Philip and Son Ltd (Supplied Maps and Models); Imperial Chemical Industries Ltd (Supplied Harvesting Sequence)

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