Felixstowe film footage from the 40s

VIDEO A SEALED film can bought at a car boot sale has revealed a glimpse into Felixstowe's past - when huge crowds flocked to the seafront for boat trips and games on the beach.

By Richard Cornwell

A SEALED film can bought at a car boot sale has revealed a glimpse into Felixstowe's past - when huge crowds flocked to the seafront for boat trips and games on the beach.

There is an atmosphere of lost innocence about the 60-year-old footage with people carefree and frolicking in the sea, wandering in the gardens and on the prom.

It shows a time when life was slower in the days before mobile phones, cars and new technology dominated everyone's lives.

It is believed the footage may have been made as a promotional film.

It was unearthed by Dave Alligan, who has his own audio visual company, and he has turned it into a DVD which is now on sale in the town.

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Mr Alligan of Brackley Close, Felixstowe said: “A friend found the film at a car boot sale. It was a sealed film can and we didn't know what was inside at all.

“We didn't even know it was Felixstowe. When we ran it, it was just wow - that's a little gem.”

What was most surprising about the 16mm film was that it was colour, recorded at a time when colour film was expensive and very rare for amateurs interested in cine.

Mr Alligan said: “We think parts of the film may be pre-war but certainly quite a bit is after the Second World War. You get a glimpse in a couple of shots of the whole length of the pier and you can see there is a section missing where it was severed to stop German landings.

“It could be late 1940s or early 1950s.

“It was filmed almost as a travelogue so I wonder if the aim was to use it to promote Felixstowe. If it was homemade holiday film you would expect it to feature again and again the same people enjoying themselves.”

Included are the Spa Gardens, Felixstowe Ferry, the beach, Dougie Goodall taking out boat trips, the pier and Pier Pavilion, and even Hamilton Road.

Have you discovered something interesting from the past? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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