Mem­o­ries sought of High­lands film guild

The Oban Times - - NEWS -

MEM­O­RIES of a unique trav­el­ling cin­ema that toured the High­lands and Is­lands from the 1940s to the 1970s are be­ing sought by a team of re­searchers based at the uni­ver­si­ties of Glas­gow and Stir­ling.

This ma­jor re­search project is the first to ex­plore peo­ple’s mem­o­ries of the High­lands and Is­lands Film Guild, and the team of re­searchers – led by Dr Ian Goode at Glas­gow Univer­sity – want to hear from any­one who re­mem­bers the guild or was in­volved in its op­er­a­tion.

The High­lands and Is­lands Film Guild was an In­ver­ness-based mo­bile cin­ema ser­vice set up af­ter the Sec­ond World War. The guild was a pre­cur­sor to the cur­rent ser­vice pro­vided by the re­cently-re­fit­ted Screen Ma­chine, and was es­tab­lished in 1946. The guild’s fleet of spe­cially- equipped vans trav­elled the High­lands screen­ing movies in vil­lage halls, schools and even peo­ple’s homes.

‘The High­lands and Is­lands Film Guild was a unique mo­ment in Scot­tish cin­ema – and High­land and Is­land life,’ said Dr Goode. ‘ We have al­ready con­ducted a num­ber of in­ter­views with peo­ple who re­mem­ber the guild, and it’s won­der­ful to hear peo­ple’s mem­o­ries.

‘It is clear that the guild is re­mem­bered very fondly, par­tic­u­larly by peo­ple who ex­pe­ri­enced the film shows as chil­dren.’

The team has com­mit­ted to com­plet­ing a se­ries of ‘ case stud­ies’, cor­re­spond­ing to the ar­eas that the guild cov­ered through­out its 25-year life­span.

Dr Goode and his col­leagues have al­ready con­ducted some re­search in the In­ver­ness-shire area, and are em­bark­ing on trips to the Western Isles, Shet­land and Orkney be­fore the end of the year.

‘ We are still keen to speak with any­body who ex­pe­ri­enced the film guild. No mat­ter how brief any­one’s ex­pe­ri­ences of the guild are, nor how long ago, we would love to hear from them.’

If you re­mem­ber the High­lands and Is­lands Film Guild and the films that it showed, or were in­volved in any way in its op­er­a­tion, the team is keen to hear from you.

You can get in touch with Dr Goode 0141 330 6500 or Eala­said Munro 0141 330 6944

Fur­ther de­tails about the project can be found at www. hi­filmguild.gla.ac.uk.

One of the film guild op­er­a­tors with his equip­ment.

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