28th February 2013, 4:40pm
Midlands In Film: the history of a region
Midlands In Film Media experts from the University of Lincoln have retraced historical footprints to document the on-screen heritage of the Midlands.

A series of nine documentary films has been created in collaboration with the Media Archive for Central England (MACE), drawing on rare archive materials and never-before-seen footage to chart the history of the region.

The pioneering project was funded by EM Media through the UK Film Council’s Digital Film Archive Fund, which provides financial support to innovative programmes that boost local film industries and make important film heritage accessible to the public.

The series brings together a wealth of professional and amateur material from across the East and West Midlands, and includes forgotten footage from the development of Coventry Cathedral after World War II to coverage of Winston Churchill’s visit to Worcester in 1950.

Andy McKay, Principal Lecturer in Media Production at the University of Lincoln, led the collaboration and produced the DVD series.

He explained: “The Midlands In Film project has engaged seven different filmmakers from the School of Media in extensive archival research and programme making, and we have been lucky enough to benefit from the technical support of colleagues, students and alumni throughout the composition of the documentaries.

“The making of these programmes has also involved filmmakers in detailed location research and filming, as well as sourcing original oral testimony from historical documentation, expert personalities and creative practitioners from the wider world.  There are some absolute gems of film in this collection, which will breathe new life into the region’s archive footage and reach new audiences with historical media material.”

The film collection was created following more than two years of extensive research into the people and places of the East and West Midlands and is now available on DVD. The Midlands In Film collection compromises of Nottingham on Film, Derbyshire on Film – The Peak District, Rebuilding Coventry, Made in Leicester, Shropshire Lives, Regenerating Birmingham (1955 to 1975), Snobs & Clowns: Northampton on Film, Worcestershire on Film and Footprints in the Sand: Holidays on the Coast.

James Patterson, Director of MACE, said: “This successful collaboration with our colleagues at the University of Lincoln has delivered a great first series of DVDs. This is just the start of a long term programme MACE is developing to reveal the richness of the Midlands screen heritage in our care. Look out for more titles from MACE in the coming months and years."

For more information on the Midlands In Film series, and how to purchase the DVDs, visit www.macearchive.org.
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