HC Deb 16 February 1927 vol 202 cc937-9W
Sir W. de FRECE

asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether, in view of the growing demand on the part of public departments for official films, he can state in detail what films of this nature have at present been taken, and give in each case the reason for this action?


Films in the possession of Government Departments, or in which a Government Department has some interest, include the following classes, details of which would be very long, and are, I assume, not required by my hon. Friend, namely:

  • Films dealing with the War.
  • Technical and instructional films held by the Service Departments.
  • Recruiting films.
  • Films produced by Commercial Companies under facilities given by a. Service Department.

Apart from the above, very few films have been produced for Departmental purposes, the more important being as follows: At the British Empire Exhibition, 1925, besides films illustrating life in the Army and in the Air Force, the following films (prepared for that purpose) were displayed:

Name of film and owner of negative.

  • Highways of the Empire.—Department of Overseas Trade.
  • Resources of the Empire.—Department of Overseas Trade.
  • Royal Mint.—Pathé Frères.
  • Post Office.—Pathé Frères.
  • Mail Embarkation.—General Post Office. Forestry in Great Britain. — Pathé Frères.
  • Production of certified milk on an English Farm.—Ministry of Health.
  • Patworth T. B. Colony.—Ministry of Health.
  • Lord Mayor Treloar's Home for Surgical T.B. at Alton.—Ministry of Health.
  • "Well-born" (Maternity and Child Welfare film).—Ministry of Health. Land Drains.—Pathé Frères.
  • Agricultural machinery.—Pathé Frères.
  • The Story of a Loaf of Bread.—Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.
  • Clean Milk.—Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.
  • Home-Grown Sugar. — British Sugar Beet Growers' Society.

In addition to the foregoing the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries own a film entitled, "The Rat Menace" and a number of films were prepared during the War for the Ministry of Information.

A film of the signing of the Locarno Treaty was produced in 1925.

A film to illustrate the coal-dust explosion experiments at Eskmeals was prepared on behalf of the Mines Research Board in 1923, the cost being met from a grant made by the Miners' Welfare Committee. The film is lent to workmen's associations connected with the mining industry for safety propaganda.

18 films have been purchased or produced by the British Social Hygiene Council, which body is assisted by a Government grant, and the Ministry of Health in 1918 purchased 12 copies of the film, "Dr. Wise on Influenza," which are lent for production at local Health Weeks, etc.