In 1978, cast and crew had descended on Keighley to film the box office hit Yanks, directed by John Schlesinger of “Midnight Cowboy” fame and set during World War II in the village of Dobcross, Oldham.

The film starring Richard Gere and Vanessa Redgrave, focused on three different romances all taking place as a result of the stationing of American troops in Britain.

For the final scene Keighley Railway Station and its Second World War locomotive became the perfect location, showing troops boarding the train to the frontline.

Much of the filming had taken place on location in the North England between April and August 1978 with other scenes shot in Oldham, Glossop and Stalybridge. One of the scenes was also filmed next to a pillbox attached to the former Royal Ordnance Factory in Steeton.

According to director John Schlesinger, Steeton, was the perfect location for filming Yanks. The buildings in its Goods Vehicle Testing Centre were exactly what the director was looking. However, a lot of painting had to be done to make it look like an American army camp.

British born John, who had been awarded a CBE for his services to film in 1970 had insisted that Yanks was not a war film, even though it was about the invasion of Britain by American GIs in 1943.