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Steam Fair and Circus from 1964

This post features a standard 8 Kodachrome vintage home movie which was taken at a Steam Fair and Circus in August 1964.

It is unusual to find a vintage home movie which has been labelled with exactly where and when an event portrayed in the film took place. That is the situation with this film however, because written on a small label affixed to the reel is a label which says, ’28/8/1964 Steam Fair at Shottesbrook Park‘.

When I came to convert this film to digital, I discovered that it had been shot with a camera which included picture information right up to the edge of the frame, so when I cropped the movie I left that portion in place. This is why the film still has the sprocket holes showing in the top and bottom of the left hand side.

Some images from the Steam Fair

Here is a gallery of images which I’ve taken from the film just to give a taste of the contents.

Steam fair and Circus film

The film starts with a few feet which are both scratched and fogged. This is a not unusual characteristic of Standard 8 film; because it is loaded from a reel of film with no leader or backing paper and turned over at the mid point there is often fogging at the start and mid-points. Once those couple of feet of film have passed however the rest of the film is pretty well exposed and characteristically for Kodachrome, quite colourful.

Because of the known location and date I didn’t do much detective work in trying to find out too much about the film, but I did google for Harry Cody’s Circus since that name appears on the top of a Steam Traction engine in the film. That didn’t throw up anything about the circus shown in this film, although I found out that there is an actor called Harry Cody.

I was surprised at what appears to be quite a low attendance at the Fair – I seem to remember when I was a boy in the 1960s that when a circus came to town everybody turned up. I may be of course that this film was taken early in the morning before all the crowds arrived, or it may not have been very well advertised.

Anyway, here is the film for your enjoyment. If you have any comments please let me know in the comments form below.

About Vintage Home Movies

If you would like more information about Vintage Home Movies please take a look at the Welcome and About page here and a description of how films are digitised here.

If you see anything in the film which you recognise or you think gives clues to the location or date, please let me know in the comments below. Also, please share this post with your friends if you think they may be able to help locate scene in this film.

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About

A software developer by profession and an amateur photographer by hobby I've been interested in all things photographic since I was a teenager some 40 years ago. Many of my interests centre around vintage film photography and cinematography.

Comments

  1. Roy Gardiner says:

    I thought that was splendid! The photographer was really skilled in creating a lot of visual interest and in capturing the dynamics of the roundabouts and swings. It was fast-paced, varied and memorable.

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