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Summary: A picture of Britain's west coast ports and their rôle in keeping open Britain's vital links with the outside world.
Description: Maps at the beginning show Britain first as a small set of islands menaced by an enemy-controlled continent, then as part of a world-spanning Empire linked by sea routes; film of a "Shipping Ministry Official" redirecting a convoy from the Thames to West Coast introduces continuity themes for a 'tour' of the ports, with a brief indication of typical import and export cargoes handled at Bristol and Avonmouth (sugar and wheat); Cardiff (iron ore; coal exported); Manchester (machinery for export, cotton and meat imported, via ship canal); Liverpool (cattle and wool); Glasgow (foodstuffs). The film ends with a general survey of the wide variety of cargo handled, and a tribute to the Royal and Merchant Navies. Besides the factual survey outlined above, the film also incorporates sequences on transport outside the docks (railways, ship canal) and at almost every port a scripted conversation between/interview with 'typical' dockers, blending comedy with patriotism.
Production Country: GB
Production Details: Ministry of Information (Production sponsor)
GB Instructional (Production company)
Schauder, Leon (Production individual)
Herbert, Peter (Production individual)
Catling, Darrel (Production individual)
Personalities, Units and Organisations: Royal Navy (regiment/service)
Merchant Navy (regiment/service)
Keywords: economics, British general - commerce: shipping (object name)
operations, British maritime - harbour (object name)
operations, British maritime - routine: convoy (object name)
Avonmouth, Gloucestershire, England, UK (geography)
GB, England & Bristol, Glos <docks> (geography)
GB, England & Manchester, Lancs <docks> (geography)
GB, England & Liverpool, Lancs <docks> (geography)
GB, Scotland & Glasgow, Lanark <docks> (geography)
GB, Wales & Cardiff, Glam <docks> (geography)
Physical Characteristics: Colour format: B&W
Sound format: Sound
Soundtrack language: English
Title language: English
Technical Details: Format: 35mm
Number of items/reels/tapes: 1
Footage: 957 ft; Running time: 11 mins
Notes: Remarks: the complete unoriginality (and general unfunniness), as well as the self-consciousness of the "comedy" interludes detract from the film which as a whole, is otherwise not bad - the 'general' sequence after Glasgow is very well done.