Title ID 3214Collection ID519
Title[A Winter Cruise; SS Avoceta 3500 tons]
Date26 October 1929 - 18 November 1929
CollectionStaley Family
Genre/TypeAmateurFamily Home MovieNon-fictionHoliday
ThemeTravel Leisure
KeywordsBoats Buildings Harbours Holidays Landscape Ships Travel Games Religious Buildings Ethnic Groups Weather
LocalAtalaya Gran Canaria Las Palmas Lisbon Madeira Sintra Tenerife
NationalPortugal Spain Europe
ProductionRalph Staley
CameraRalph Staley
ParticipantsNellie Staley (Mother)
FormatBlack & White Silent
Duration24 min.
Copyright & AccessCopyright restrictions apply, contact Screen Archive South East for details


A detailed film by Ralph Staley of a cruise with his wife Nellie aboard the SS Avoceta; sailing from Liverpool and visiting Portugal, Madeira and the Canary Islands. Mrs Staley is filmed amongst other passengers and crew on deck. They take in the main tourist sights at all the stop off points and film some of the local people and customs they encounter. This film has intertitles throughout.


A detailed film by Ralph Staley of a cruise with his wife Nellie aboard the SS Avoceta; sailing from Liverpool and visiting Lisbon docking a port where local people mill about between the pallets of goods on the dockside. The SS Avoceta passes slowing through a canal or next to the coastline allowing several shots of the landscape and hills with houses and buildings to pass by. By car, the family then drive to Sintra to visit Pena Palace, and tour the village. The camera films sweeping panoramas of the countryside. The film-maker then tours Lisbon, starting at Rossio Square with fountain and monument where local ladies carry round flat baskets on their heads through the square.

Upon returning to the ship, crews load hay and straw bails on to an adjacent ship from the dock whilst the camera pans about filming other boats and ships on the water as vessels pass by. Nellie is filmed amongst other passengers and crew on deck as the Staley family play games and stroll around on deck when the boat is at sea. The ship docks in Maderia, where local young boys dive for coins from small row boats next to the SS Avoceta. Portrait shots of the guests and crew follows, with everyone on deck posing for photographs. The film-maker tours a street market in Maderia, and further local sights including a garden with waterfall and ducks on a pond, and two men pushing a wheel-based sled type wicker seat down a slope (?). The next excursion is to 'Las Palmas, Grand Canary' with various shots of the harbour, Cathedral, and landscape at Atalaya with portraits of local people. Two days are spent in Santa Cruz, Tenerife visiting the vast banana plantations and plantation lodge on the farm. The family then sail back to Liverpool on very rough seas under thick fog.