Title ID 10809Collection ID1265
Title[Childhood Wartime Scenes]
Date1942 - 1945
CollectionJohn William Bell
Genre/TypeAmateurFamily Home MovieNon-fictionFamily Life
ThemeWartime And Military Case Study The Home Front
KeywordsChildren Family Aircraft Wars Second World War (1939-1945) Celebrations
LocalNorth Cheam Amersham Mole Valley Dorking
RegionalSurrey Buckinghamshire
NationalEngland United Kingdom
ProductionJohn William Bell
CameraJohn William Bell
Format9.5mm Black & White Silent
Copyright & AccessCopyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details.


An amateur film with intertitles following a young boy's early years during wartime.


The film begins with titles showing a boy's first birthday, cards and cake and scenes at home. A squadron of fighter planes pass overhead.

Intertitle: After My First Hair Cut'. Scenes of the child in the garden.

Intertitle 'Visit to Amersham Bucks, September 1942' with a walk through the fields and village.

Intertitle: 'I am now TWO (and feel like a two year old). Children play in the garden. Title: ' I visit Dorking, Whitsuntide, June 1943'. Travelling by train the family visit the Abinger Hammer clock in Mole Valley, Surrey. Home, garden and park scenes follow with a ride on a donkey.

Intertitle: '3 Years old March 1944'. Playing in the garden and park. The camera focusses on an air raid siren on the street, balloon barrage, smoke in the distance and bomb damaged houses.

The film ends with a union flag blowing in the wind amongst the ruined buildings and the final intertitle: 'Flying Fortresses go out to Germany April 1945'. Several aircraft are seen flying in formation in the sky.


A black and white still image taken from TID 10809, showing the two year old boy taking a donkey ride through a football field. The toddler is sat on the back of a donkey in a long woollen coat, being led by a young girl also dressed in a long woollen coat. The girl is carrying a short bamboo cane and is looking shyly at the camera.