Title ID 3167Collection ID694
TitleBognor Regis Review
Date1929; [ca. 1930s]
CollectionBognor Regis Film Society
Genre/TypeAmateurCine/Video clubNon-fictionLocal Topical
ThemeCine Club Film-making Seaside Fashion
KeywordsAircraft Animals Beaches Boats Clothing Entertainment Leisure Time Activities Motor Vehicles Religious Buildings Royalty Shops Sport Storms Fashion Beachwear Uniforms
LocalBognor Regis
RegionalWest Sussex
NationalEngland United Kingdom
ProductionBognor Regis Film Society
ProducerBognor Regis Film Society
ParticipantsMahatma Gandhi; HM King George V; Queen Mary; Miss Verion
Format9.5mm Black & White Silent
Duration36 min. 44 sec.
Copyright & AccessCopyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details


A compilation of local news in and around Bognor Regis. The items have been edited together at a later date; intertitles, some animated, introduce each item.


Here There and Any Old Where

The newsreel opens with an intertitle "From Sir Richard Hotham's Bognor - to Bognor Regis of to-day". The film shows a close-up of Sir Richard Hotham’s gravestone (the founder of Bognor). The intertitle "How Bognor got its 'Regis'" introduces scenes of King George V and Queen Mary on the road and arriving at Craigwell for the King’s convalescence. The Queen is filmed attending a church service. This is followed by scenes of crowds lining the streets of Bognor on the King’s departure. Bognor’s tribute to the King on his death shows the Union flag at half-mast, and a slow-marching procession of police, military and fire brigade.

The title "Winter" precedes scenes of people walking on the promenade in winter clothing on a windy day. After rough seas, bathing huts lay strewn in pieces on the beach. Crowds watch as people try to save their goods and the wreckage of the broken huts is seen smashing against the promenade, with further scenes of stormy seas.

A 'Summer cloud burst' leads to scenes of flooding in Bognor Regis town centre and nearby Pulborough. Short scenes from a football match between Bognor and Chichester are followed by scenes of Cricketers at Bognor Cricket Club and onlookers, including a man in a large wicker wheelchair. A title reads ‘The Gresham’ and shows various men and women on a balcony and outside a house. Mahatma Gandhi is shown leaving his friend’s house in Bognor. Clergy, including the Bishop of Chichester, gather for the consecration of Aldwick Church. Freemasons from the Gordon and Felpham Lodge leave the church in their aprons and sashes after a service; two embroidered banners are carried from the church.

An advert states: "For sparkling prints, take your film to Cleeves". Several exterior shots of Cleeves’ Chemist shops at different locations around Bognor Regis - the High Street, the Esplanade, the Pier, West Parade, or Alnwick Road. Most bear large Kodak advertisements.

Scenes on the busy seafront show a bustling Bognor; cars and buses arrive and leave, some heading for London. The title ‘Eve’s Holiday Wear’ precedes scenes of women on the seafront and beach in beach attire. A woman in a swimsuit dances for the camera, another does handstands and they play leapfrog. On the very crowded beach, people seek out a spot, sit on the shingle or dry themselves after a swim. A deckchair attendant issues tickets, people paddle and bathe in the sea, children take donkey rides and pleasure boats arrive filled with passengers. A title reads "Jack Allen presents the Express Girls". They perform a high-kicking dance routine on the beach. Two women, one in Regency-style dress and poke bonnet, the other in 1930s halter-neck swimming costume and short bobbed hair pose for the camera.

The ‘Daily Mirror 8’ perform a marching and gymnastics routine on the grass near the seafront. A large crowd watch several other acts including a baton twirling, a high-kick dance routine and balancing acts. ‘Arthur Lang - Worlds Yo Yo Champion’ performs yo-yo tricks. An elephant walks through the street advertising the circus’s arrival in town. A procession of circus people, horses and baby elephants follow.

A man on the beach addresses a crowd through a megaphone as lifeguards from the ‘Daily Sketch Lifesaving Team’ give a demonstration on the beach. Wearing liveguard uniforms with patrol caps and chinstraps, they demonstrate techniques for saving a drowning man. A steamer arrives at the crowded pier. Men board the Brighton Belle (Bristol). High-divers, including an escapologist and a man on a bicycle, dive from the end of the pier. There are scenes of visitors on the pier and on the promenade.

Sir Alan Cobham’s Air Circus featuring biplanes, the Autogyro and the Flying Flea, are shown on the ground and in flight. There are also wing-walking demonstrations. A Graf Zeppelin airship flies over houses. A sign reads 'Book here for flights' and people board one of Alan Cobham’s planes, including competition-winner Miss Verion, aged eighty. Aerial views over Bognor’s coast take in the rock gardens and the pier. The passengers are shown leaving the plane, including the smiling Miss Verion.


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Contextual information

1930s Bognor attracted large amount of people recuperating; the resort’s increased popularity is evident in the crowded seafront scenes, showing a large volume of traffic. The increase in Bognor’s popularity after the King’s visit is well-documented in this compilation. The first section of the compilation is most likely material shot by Harry Guermonprez before the formation of the Bognor Regis Film Society (BRFS). The newsreel itself was compiled at a later date. Throughout the 1930s, the BRFS produced several newsreels (as well as dramas), recording everyday scenes and special events in the West Sussex seaside town. The Society was often mentioned in Home Movies & Home Talkies and their films also critiqued and occasionally awarded prizes by Amateur Cine World. The first BRFS meeting was held in Cleeves Chemist on the High Street (featured in this film). Harry Guermonprez also managed one of the Cleeves shops.

Other examples of locally produced newsreels in Screen Archive South East’s collection include Local News (1951) by Albany Productions Film Unit and Leatherhead Newsreel (1939 - 1945). The Haywards Heath Cine and Video Society also continue to make local newsreels on video, Mid Sussex Newsreel (2002) and Mid Sussex Newsreel (2003).

Fashion Notes: The film shows footballers, cricketers and gymnasts in sportswear. Holiday wear and bathing costumes also feature in the film, along with examples of firemen and lifeguards dressed in uniform.

Fashion keywords: bathing suits, swimming caps, uniforms

For further information see Screen Search Fashion online resource.

Related titles

Related resources


Eyles, Allen, Frank Gray, and Alan Readman. Cinema West Sussex: The First Hundred Years. Chichester: Phillimore & Co Ltd, 1996

The book includes a concise history of the Bognor Regis Film Society. Copies are available at the West Sussex Record Office and at Screen Archive South East.


British Film Institute National Archive & BFI Reuben Library

The BFI in London holds many ‘How To’ manuals and publications giving advice to the amateur film-maker and cine societies. The catalogue is searchable online.

West Sussex Record Office

The West Sussex Record Office (WSRO) holds many items relating to the Bognor Regis Film Society including newspaper cuttings and programmes for the film shows organised by the Society. The WSRO collections can also be searched using the National Archives website.


Amateur Cine World

Reports on the activities of the Bognor Regis Film Society often appeared in Amateur Cine World. The Society’s films were also critiqued and occasionally awarded prizes by the magazine. Copies are available at the British Film Institute Library.

Home Movies & Home Talkies

Reports on the activities of the Bognor Regis Film Society often appeared in this magazine. Copies are available at the British Film Institute Library.


Institute of Amateur Cinematographers

“An international organisation whose aims are to further interest and education in relation to all aspects of film and video making and associated visual arts.” The website has links to further useful resources as well as lists of cine clubs and societies nationwide.

Screen Search Fashion

This online resource provides a thematic guide for students interested in fashion and dress. The site offers pathways into aspects of fashion and dress as depicted in archive film from the inter-war period in the Screen Archive South East collections.