THE ICONIC building was the home of news in Leeds for 42 years.
Now a film giving an insight into the world of life inside the brutalist Wellington Street home of the Yorkshire Evening Post at a time when journalists filed ‘scoops’ from inside red telephone boxes has been digitised as part of a project to bring thousands of films online for the first time.
Yorkshire Film Archive is one of many film archives across the country which have worked with the BFI on its £15m Lottery-funded Britain on Film project, which will see 10,000 films, from intimate family portraits to significant historical events, made valuable to the public and kept for prosperity online.
One such film is Third Century: The Story of Yorkshire Post Newspapers, which gives viewers an insight into the world of journalism is Leeds at a time when six editions a day rolled off printing presses at the newly-opened mammoth building, which was demolished last April.
The building was home to the YEP and sister title The Yorkshire Post for 42 years, and the huge joint newsroom was often referred to as ‘the bunker’, as it was surrounded by grey concrete with no windows.
Britain on Film includes many other films shot in Yorkshire, including footage from the start of the 20th century, little over a decade after Louis Le Prince filmed the world’s first moving images in Leeds in 1888.
Some of this footage will be shown on The Screen at Trinity, the large digital screen outside of Trinity Leeds shopping centre this afternoon.
Other film highlights include Great Peter of York (1927), which captures the large crowd and choir that were on hand on greet the arrival of a replacement bell at York Minster, watching and singing as labourers manually slide the 10-tonne bell off a truck; and This Town of Ours, which shows Halifax emerging into the 1970s, from the making of Quality Streets to its new high-rise flats, markets, pubs and recent immigrants.
The project began in 2012 and digitising will continue until the end of 2017. Both professional and amateur footage sits alongside newsreels, advertisements, home movies, forgotten TV shows, and films by government departments all offer surprising insights into British life in the 20th century.
Robin Baker, head curator at the BFI said: “For 120 years cameras have captured almost every aspect of life in the UK on film, but too often these have been inaccessible to all but the most determined researchers. Now, Britain on Film is transforming access to films from the UK’s archives and giving new life to them by making them available, no matter where you live.”
Yorkshire Film Archive’s archive manager, Graham Relton said: “Yorkshire Film Archive have been delighted to work with the BFI to make more of our collections accessible via the BFI Player and, in the coming months, via the YFA website.
“The strength of our regional content is in its ability to re-connect audiences with film made in, or about, their own communities – people have a sense of ownership of these images, and have their own stories to share.”
Britain on Film can be found a player.bfi.org.uk