Title ID 1639Collection ID503
TitleThe Pageant of Farnham Castle
Date[ca. 1950s]
Genre/TypeAmateurIndependent AmateurNon-fictionActuality/Factual
KeywordsCastles Performing Arts Dance Dresses Theatre
NationalEngland United Kingdom
ProductionA Polperran Picture
CameraMargaret Ross
Format16mm Black & White Silent
Duration6min. 26sec.
Copyright & AccessCopyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details


This amateur silent film features scenes from a theatrical production based at Farnham Castle. The film is divided up by regular intertitles which describe the scenes as they unfold. Actors and actresses are dressed in costumes from the period and act out major events in the history of the castle.


"The Pageant of Farnham Castle"

The film opens with shots of a woman in period medieval costume standing outside the entrance to Wayneflete's Tower.

Intertitle: "The Building of Farnham Castle A.D. 1147"; shots of medieval knights and other characters in the grounds of the castle.

Intertitle: "King John Visits Bishop Peter Des Roches A.D. 1215"; actors, dressed in medieval costumes performing a scene outside Wayneflete's Tower.

Intertitle: "The Royal Baby at the Castle A.D. 1486"; shots of women dancing whilst a musician plays a harp.

Intertitle: "The Blind Bishop and the Farnham Children A.D. 1527"; brief shot of children performing a scene.

Intertitle: "Cardinal Wolsey Comes and Goes A.D. 1530"; an actor playing the Cardinal is greeted by a crowd of people.

Intertitle: "Henry VIII arrives to see the Cardinal"; shot of actor playing Henry VIII.

Intertitle: "Queen Elizabeth at the Castle A.D. 1588"; an actress playing the queen stands on the steps of Wayneflete's Tower, before mounting a horse.

Intertitle: "News of the Defeat of the Armada"; a messenger reports the news; shots of women singing.

Intertitle: "Let the Bells be Rung..."; a man stands on the steps and announces something to the crowd.

Intertitle: "The Castle Held by the Roundheads A.D. 1648"; dark shots of guards on duty.

Intertitle: "May Day at Farnham Castle A.D. 1670"; a maypole is put up, someone is put in the stocks and maypole dancing takes place.

Intertitle: "Bishop Sumner comes to the Castle A.D. 1828"; shot of a coach arriving.

Intertitle: "The Bishop's Vision Today and Tomorrow"; shot of the Bishop; a flag flies atop of the tower.

Closing titles: "The End", "A Polperran Picture Filmed by Margaret Ross".