Title ID 7920Collection ID1061
TitleJourney by Open Top Bus
CollectionHugh Hale
Genre/TypeAmateurIndependent AmateurNon-fictionActuality/Factual
ThemeTransport Cine Club Film-making
KeywordsBeaches Travel Transport Seaside Resorts Children Leisure Time Activities Beachwear Summer
LocalBognor Regis
RegionalWest Sussex
NationalEngland United Kingdom
ProductionR. M. Hale and Hugh Hale
DirectorR. M. Hale and Hugh Hale
FormatColour Silent
Duration10 min. 15 sec.
Copyright & AccessCopyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details


The 1985 film by Hugh Hale charts a trip along Bognor Regis sea front from an open top bus.


Main title: "R.H. and H.H. present Journey by Open Top Bus". A sign reading "Bognor Regis Welcomes You" is seen. At the top of a green open-top bus reading "Let Southdown Show You", a man stands with a hand-held movie camera. First stop is the Bognor Regis Centre. Women sit outside in the sun underneath flags. A cafe inside is visible. Alexandra Theatre posters are seen, followed by a market selling bric-a-brac. On the beach, families walk and sit on benches along the promenade. From the top of the bus, houses are seen behind the sea front architecture. Passengers on the bus are filmed, as are visitors to the beach. The bus passes by the George Pub and neighbouring thatched cottage. A church and graveyard are seen from the roadside (dark). Back on the bus, the camera takes in businesses, hairdressers, a launderette and a restaurant. The bus arrives at Butlins. Children play in a pool and families sit on the grass beside. Back on the bus, Butlins is seen from the top of the bus. The bus passes past the Bognor Regis Centre once more, and back down the promenade, past the pier. The bus is seen from the street. Beach scenes follow, taking in sea side entertainment, trampolines, a Magic Round About, a bouncy castle and a casino. At a bowling green, women in white dresses clap enthusiastically as one player takes her turn. The bus is seen continuing along the sea front, passing a man mowing a lawn, a residential street of the promenade, and the green lawn of a public garden. Lingering shots of the Clarehaven Hotel are seen before a series of night scenes. Strings of lights crisscross the street. Car headlights move underneath. Restaurant signs are lit up along the road. Fireworks burst out of the black sky. Rockets and Catherine Wheels are clearly captured. A final pictorial card reading "The End" closes the film.


a still from 'Journey by Open Top Bus' (1985)