Collection Staley Family
Ralph Staley's films date from the late 1910s to the mid 1930s, and show his family in their home town of Bognor Regis.
|Collection ID||519||Reference code||WS 950914|
|Dates||1910s - 1950s|
|Materials||FILM 16mm 9.5mm Standard 8mm Documentation|
|Access status||Contact Screen Archive South East for details|
Ralph Staley was born in Bognor Regis and, with his wife Ellen, who was always known as Nellie, ran a drapers shop on the High Street in Bognor Regis until his retirement and the sale of the business in 1953. The business was first established by his father George Whittle Staley in the 1880s, and it expanded over a number of premises during the early part of the 20th Century.
The majority of Ralph Staley's films date from the late 1910s to the mid 1930s. Many focus on his family life in Bognor Regis, with particular emphasis on the activities of his daughter Pam. Staley also took his camera with him on family outings, recording foreign cruises and a holiday in Wales, as well as picnics in the countryside, boat trips, and outings to Surrey.
The Staley family films represent fairly early examples of home movies. Film-making equipment for 'domestic' only became available to the general public in the early 1920s. Ralph Staley’s was keen to experiment with film techniques, trying reverse action and slow motion filming as well as briefly using Dufaycolor, an early form of colour film available in the 1930s. Mr Staley's skill in handing the camera is evident in throughout the films which represent appealing examples of family life in this era.
Films in this collection:
Showing 1 to 15 of 16 results.
Staley Family Domestic
|Date||1928 - 1931||ID||3210|
This family film focuses on the activities of six year old daughter Pam who plays with a board game and other toys at home, rides a horse on the beach and plays with autumn leaves. She has her first walk to School with her mother, climbs a tree and convalesces after a tonsillectomy.
An edited home movie showing playful scenes of the Staley family at the beach in their home town of Bognor Regis and in their garden in the late 1920s. The film includes some camera effects using slow and reverse motion.
Scenes taken during trips between Portsmouth and Southampton; Summer 1929
Film of the Staley family on an outing on the South coast. Nellie Staley and her five year old daughter Pam board a ship at Portsmouth Harbour, and sail to the Isle of Wight. They are also seen boarding the Mauritania at Southampton, travelling to Cowes and returning to Portsmouth.
[A Winter Cruise; SS Avoceta 3500 tons]
|Date||26 October 1929 - 18 November 1929||ID||3214|
A detailed film by Ralph Staley of a cruise with his wife Nellie aboard the SS Avoceta; sailing from Liverpool and visiting Portugal, Madeira and the Canary Islands. Mrs Staley is filmed amongst other passengers and crew on deck. They take in the main tourist sights at all the stop off points and film some of the local people and customs they encounter. This film has intertitles throughout.
Film of the Staley family at home and on outings, including attending a hunt meet at Goodwood. The film begins with scenes of the family on the beach at Bognor and on the Esplanade. At the hunt meet servants bring out trays of 'stirrup cups' for the huntsman, and the hunt sets off. Mrs Staley and daughter Pam are also seen with horses at the stables.
A film of the Staley Family enjoying the Summer in the garden and at the beach in their home town of Bognor Regis. Ralph and Nellie, are seen playing with their daughter Pam at the local public gardens, at the beach and at home with the family.
Days at Itchenor with the Kingfisher
Scenes of the Staley family sailing in the Chichester Harbour waters around Itchenor relaxing and having afternoon tea aboard the sailing boat Kingfisher among others, diving into and swimming in the water, and playing on the sands in the harbour. Several shots include reverse filming techniques of Ralph and Dr Robert appearing to dive into the water and back out, and playing leapfrog in reverse.
Picnics & Pam 1932
A film of the Staley family on various outings. The family group pick flowers in the countryside and have a tea and a picnic. At home, daughter Pam Staley (aged 8) eats at the table with her parents, plays piano and brushes her hair. On other outings, the family go sailing, have a walk and a picnic in the country and go swimming in the sea.
Frensham August 1933
Amateur film-maker, Ralph Staley's film of the family at At New Lodge, Frensham Hill, (now part of Frensham Heights School) in Surrey in the Summer of 1933. Nellie Staley, Ralph Staley, their nine year old daughter Pam, and other family members play tennis in swimsuits on the grass courts, sit in the sun, and play on the lawns.
Film of the Staley family on holiday in Snowdonia, Wales. Ralph Staley films workings on a sheep farm and his family on the seafront, where ten year old Pam practices driving on the beach. They walk up mount Snowdon and take picnics in the countryside. A final section, in Dufaycolor, shows the family at Lake Bala [?] taking walks and stopping for tea.
The Den School (Sudley Cottage)
Film by Ralph Staley of activities at his daughter Pam's girls school in Bognor. Girls perform a "health and fitness" style exercise display and show their gymnastic skills at jumping over a vaulting horse. A group of Girl Guides perform a ceremony and are awarded badges; they pose for a photo and play a whispering game. The girls then hold a costumed performance for the parents.
Boat Trip; MS Stella Polaris
Film by Ralph Staley of a cruise with his wife Nellie aboard the Norwegian liner MS Stella Polaris. They stop at the port of Stockholm, and Copenhagen amongst other destinations. On board, deck coits and other games are played, passengers relax on deck, and Nellie is seen washing in their cabin and looking out to sea from a window. A Finnish boat/plane (OH-ALK) is seen leaving the shoreline adjacent to the ship at one of the stops.
At the Farm
Film of Pam Staley (aged 11) and other children at a farm. A hay stack is built, using a conveyor/elevator to load the hay onto the cart. Pam rides the horse that powers the elevator mechanism and helps load the hay onto the elevator. Pam plays with kittens and, with another boy, stands and waves to the camera from an orchard outside the farm house.
Film of a Jubilee parade in Bognor Regis in honour of George V, shot by Ralph Staley from a window above his drapers shop in the High Street. The film shows bunting decorating the street and the Jubilee procession including a marching band and floats. Couples dance in the street to a live band. The film ends with a shot of his daughter Pam in their garden, playing with a cat.
[Portrait of a little boy]
A well constructed and charming portrait of a young boy (John Staley) playing in the family garden, filmed by members of the Staley Family. John's parents are Dr Robert Staley and Sylvia Staley.
Showing 1 to 15 of 16 results.