Widdicombe Fair



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Still from 'Widdicombe Fair'
'Two* song films in cartoon form. These films have been made as an experiment, in response to requests for films of a lighter nature.' [1]

Date: 1947
Duration: 05:35

Director: -
Production Company: [W.M.] Larkins Studio/G.B. Instructional/The Central Office of Information
Producer: -
Cinematographer: N/A
Composer: Hubert Clifford
Narration: N/A
Editor: -
Sound Recording: -
Drawings by: [W.M.] Larkins Studio

Sung by: Dale Smith, and a male voice quartet

Length: 35mm: 538ft. 16mm: 231ft.

Notes:

*Refers also to a companion piece, Lincolnshire Poacher.

Also known by the title 'Tam Pierce', Widdicombe Fair is a traditional English folk song (Roud #137). Read more about it on Wikipedia.

The title credits of this film declare it to be 'A British Council Film, made by The Central Office of Information, London'. For more information about this, please see the Central Office of Information page.

This film lists the illustrations as being simply by 'The Larkins Studio', whereas the companion film Lincolnshire Poacher lists the illustrations as being by the 'W.M. Larkins Studio'. It seems fair to assume that the same studio is being referred to.

This film and its companion piece, Lincolnshire Poacher, do not officially appear in the Films of Britain catalogues. It appears as typed amendment to the catalogue on a separate sheet fixed into the back of the 1946 catalogue, and suggests that the films have not yet been completed at the time of writing. However, both titles are listed as 'withdrawn' in the index to the next edition of the catalogue (1947-50).
This perhaps implies that the films were never actually distributed by the British Council.

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Typed amendment sheet found in the back of the 1946-47 edition of 'Films of Britain'

In this respect, Lincolnshire Poacher and Widdicombe Fair bear a resemblance to Indian Ocean, which also appears as an addition in the back of the 1946 Films of Britain catalogue, but in this case does not appear at all in the 1947-50 edition.

Another anomaly is that the Films of Britain amendment lists them as being produced by Larkin Studios. However, the films are also listed in
G.B. Instructional Limited's catalogue Educational Films Filmstrips and Wall Charts (dating from around 1950) which indicates that they were produced by G.B. Instructional.



Still_-_Widdicombe_Fair_02.png
Still from 'Widdicombe Fair'
'Lincolnshire Poacher
Widdicombe Fair
These films present the English folksongs “Lincolnshire Poacher” and “Widdicombe Fair” through the media of animated drawings. Hubert Clifford has written the musical scores, and the lyrics are sung by Dale Evans and a male voice quartet. “Lincolnshire Poacher” runs for 5 minutes, “Widdicombe Fair” for 6 minutes.

C.3576
Sound
B/W
7s6d

C.3577
Sound
B/W
7s6d

BC Films
Each 1 Reel
Age 11 upwards' [2]


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  1. ^ Films of Britain - British Council Film Department Catalogue - 1946-47
  2. ^ G.B. Instructional Limited's catalogue Educational Films Filmstrips and Wall Charts