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Lights, camera, action! 10 March 2008

Tynwald Street Infants learn film making, 1967.Selected highlights of films donated to the Manx National Heritage collection will be screened during the annual film night at the Manx Museum lecture theatre on Friday 14 March.

This year’s event owes much to the amateur cameramen and women who have captured significant events or former landmarks on film – sometimes almost by accident when filming family scenes or other subject matter.

The programme spans the 1920s to the 1960s and will include the opening ceremonies for various facilities, a visit from a hover craft, the Queens Pier train in action, backstage at the Gaiety, glimpses of the Palace Lido and other Douglas attractions and donkeys on Port Erin beach. Certain sequences may well transport people back in time – the sight of racing motorcycles being winched onto the quayside, Geoff Duke in winning form and car races of the early 1950s for instance. Other scenes date from earlier times: Cunninghams Camp, bathing carts on Douglas beach, the herring girls and the Highland Gathering at the Nunnery.

MNH Archivist Wendy Thirkettle who has assembled the programme comments,

“The evening is an opportunity to express publicly our appreciation of the support given by the many depositors to the film archives. It is also an occasion to enjoy in a cinema setting a medley of Manx sights on the big screen, an experience enhanced by watching with a big audience.”

In past years the film night has proved a popular attraction. By way of response, this year Manx National Heritage is offering a second opportunity to view the same film programme at a later date and at a different time of day. Wendy explains:

“We are running a second screening as a Saturday matinee on 12 April at 2.30pm. Hopefully the alternative time will appeal to many people as well as lessening the pressure on seats for the mid March event.”

Both events are free to the public. Doors open on Friday 14 March at 7.00pm for a 7.30pm start.

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