This film is part of Free

City Report

A roving cine club camera charts the changing face of the city of Newcastle upon Tyne and its environs in the 1980s.

Amateur film 1985 21 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for North East Film Archive


This amateur news report takes a compass reading of Newcastle and surroundings in the 1980s, its changes and transformation, reconstruction and demolition, from industry and commerce to leisure. As Swan Hunters shipyards are crisis-hit, a Nissan factory rises on the old Usworth Aerodrome. The popular Hoppings fun fair returns and the Great North Run is a staggering new success. Some things remain the same. Earl Grey still surveys Grainger’s city from his lofty column.

This film is part of a unique and eclectic collection, which dates back to the pioneering early decades of amateur cinematography. Back in 1927, James Cameron gathered together a group of men and women (four of each) interested in making moving pictures. They formed the Newcastle branch of the Amateur Cinematographers Association (ACA), one of only five in Britain at the time, and still operating in the city today. The cameramen on this club production include Doug Collender who joined Tyne Tees TV in December 1958 and became a Senior Lighting Director, working on both outside broadcast and studio productions, including the cult live music programme, The Tube.