This film is part of Free

Robinson Charley

No man is an island, but Charley represents his nation in this economical cartoon tale of Britain’s economics

Animation & Artists Moving Image 1948 10 mins


Meet Charley, the portrait of a nation. At the end of the 1940s the Central Office of Information commissioned Halas & Batchelor to make seven films about policies of the post-war Labour Government. Charley was cast as the figurehead of the campaign, learning about mining, farming, national insurance, and even schooling via a son at the end of the series. This episode looks at the Marshall Plan, and makes the most explicit link between character and country as his life story stands in for 270 years of British economic history.

This government film is a public record, preserved and presented by the BFI National Archive on behalf of The National Archives, home to more than 1,000 years of British history.