|Title ID||4308||Collection ID||280|
|Title||The Romany Museum at Selborne|
|Keywords||Cultural Heritage Ethnic Groups Exhibitions Gypsies Handicrafts Oral History Trades Transport|
|Duration||45 min. 40 sec.|
|Copyright & Access||Copyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details|
The craftsmanship and artistry of the travelling Roma culture is highlighted in this film. The film records The Romany Museum's collection of 19th and 20th century vehicles and ephemera, illustrating dying artforms and way of life.
The film opens with images taken aboard a horse-drawn vehicle as it travels through Selborne. Peter Ingram, gypsy and owner of The Romany Museum, talks about the history and construction of Roma vehicles and about his restoration of the horse-drawn waggons. A variety of waggons (vardoes), including a Brush Van, are explored - the detailed artwork is highlighted. Shots of the items on exhibit at the museum are followed by a demonstration of craftsmanship - Peter Ingram makes a decorative wooden flower and a functional wooden peg using traditional gypsy methods. Further shots of the exhibits bring the film to a close.
The Romany Museum at Selborne houses a large and varied collection of items relating to traditional Roma life. The Romany gypsies have a history rich in tradition, customs, crafts, folklore and language. Their travelling lifestyle is perhaps best exemplified by the painted horse-drawn waggons (vardoes) which were adopted in the England in the mid-19th century, gradually replacing bender tents as primary accommodation. It is a lifestyle which is all but now vanished today - the film is therefore significant because it records the knowledge and skills of a gypsy whose generation was the last to experience life on the road. Screen Archive South East houses an interesting and atmospheric film entitled With the Gypsies in Kent (ca. 1939) which records the life and work of a Roma family travelling on waggons during harvest time in Kent.