Val­ley his­tory to fea­ture on na­tional TV

Cynon Valley - - YOUR NEWS - TOM HOUGHTON Re­porter tom.houghton@waleson­line.co.uk

A COL­LEC­TION of films fea­tur­ing scenes from around the Cynon Val­ley dur­ing the 1930s and ’40s and shot by a lo­cal phar­ma­cist will fea­ture in a doc­u­men­tary on na­tional tele­vi­sion.

Col­lec­tions show­cas­ing the work of early film-maker and phar­ma­cist Arthur Buck­nall An­drews, bet­ter known to his friends as Archie, have been brought to­gether and will be shown on BBC One Wales on Sun­day.

His films doc­u­ment the “rich cul­tural life” of the Cynon Val­ley in the 1930s and ’40s, at a time when cine-cam­eras were still rare.

They fea­ture footage show­ing Abera­man res­i­dents cel­e­brat­ing VE Day and burn­ing an ef­figy of Hitler.

View­ers will also see mem­bers of Abera­man Sil­ver Band row­ing out to an is­land on a lake in Aber­dare Park to per­form.

It’s as part of Wales’s Home Movies, a pro­gramme show­ing rarel­y­seen films found in at­tics and garages across Wales re­veal­ing the sto­ries of peo­ple’s lives.

Many of the films were dis­cov­ered fol­low­ing a na­tional ap­peal by pro­gramme-mak­ers, with oth­ers found in the vaults of the Na­tional Li­brary and Aber­dare Li­brary.

Archie, from Abera­man, was a phar­ma­cist who took full ad­van­tage of the ac­cess his job al­lowed him to cheap film stock.

In the words of Archie’s cousin, John Price, who col­lected many of the films: “We’ve got a re­mark­able legacy from Archie. Aber­dare and Abera­man in par­tic­u­lar was a cul­tural cen­tre: a lot of peo­ple from here went for­ward to the Eisteddfods. It shows the cul­ture that was here.”

Wales’s Home Movies is on BBC One Wales on Oc­to­ber 15 at 4.50pm.

Archie’s next-door neigh­bour Chris­tine Mor­ris and his cousin John Price share their mem­o­ries of the man and his film-mak­ing. A trea­sure-trove of rare early films shot by the pi­o­neer­ing phar­ma­cist from Abera­man fea­tures in a doc­u­men­tary be­ing shown on na­tional tele­vi­sion this week­end

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