ONE of the world’s oldest film-making clubs, based in Bradford, is screening rare colour footage of the city from the 1940s and 50s.

The group also wants people to submit their own home movies for a new digital collection.

Bradford Movie Makers - a group of amateur film-makers who meet weekly to make and show films - was established in 1932 as the Bradford Cine Circle, working with black and white 16mm film stock. Membership increased over the years, as colour film then standard 8mm film stock was introduced. Later, sound cameras opened up opportunities for sound effects, enabling the film-makers to experiment and create more polished productions.

Colour television and the rising cost of film stock hit the amateur film world in the late 1980s, but the club embraced change, taking on camcorders and becoming the Bradford Cine and Video Club.

Today it works with all formats, including computer editing and digital camcorders. Since 1936 members have met in their own cinema near the city centre, with seating for up to 60 and equipment to project both film and video.

As part of Bradford City of Film’s 10th anniversary, the Movie Makers are putting on a vintage films and dance event, showcasing highlights of their colour film collection. “We have been astonished to find colour films from the 40s and 50s, which would have been very expensive to make at the time. They’re fascinating,” said Marie McCahery from the club.

The Movie Makers are in the process of digitising their archive and want people to get involved. “We’re calling out to local people for any older films they might have tucked away, that we could digitise and add to our collection,” said Marie. “We would return the original film and give them a digital copy.

“We’re also looking for funding for this initiative and for information about the films we’ve discovered. We hope some older people can help us to identify people, including many children, featured in the films. Some of the locations can be hard to identify as there has been much building since.”

Pictured is a colour still of Winnie Kirby, playing a chemist’s wife in 1947 film Once in a Lifetime. Winnie was the first female president of Bradford Movie Makers in 1962. “We have several women film-makers and were delighted on International Women’s Day when a film written and produced by one of our members, Judith Simpson, won a cup for Best 10 Minute Film at the annual meeting of the West Riding Cine Group,” said Marie.

The group screened some of its old films at the Bradford Club last night, to an audience of club members, Roundtable groups and the University of the Third Age, which meets there.

The vintage films and dance event, for Bradford City of Film’s 10th anniversary, is at Glyde House, Bradford, on Wednesday, March 20. There will be further screenings at Glyde House on April 17 and May 22.

“Each event will have different films and will be followed by swing dancing to music from the 1940s and 50s,” said Marie, who organises vintage fairs and dance events in the district.

* Anyone who has films they would like to be digitised or would like to get involved is asked to email