Two British Transport Titles from the BFI:
The Road Ahead AND Night Mail for JUST £20
with free UK Postage
The Road Ahead
2 Discs. Year: 1959-1980. Black & White and Colour. Running time approx: 215 min.
Disc 1: Diesel Train Driver: Driving the Train (1959); Railway Electrification at Industrial Frequency (1960); Contact with the Heart of England (1967); Speed the Payload (1967); Safe on the Track? (1969); Flashing Yellows (1976); Railbus for the 80s (1978). Disc 2: Through to the Continent by Ferry Train (1978); Carriage Cleaning (1978); Great Britain: A Travel Guide (1978); Five in Millions (1978); Emergency Coupling Class 253/4 (1980);Safe at Work? (1980); Speedlink: The Quiet Revolution (1980).
Following the nationalisation of public transport in 1948, the British Transport Commission set up its own in-house film production unit. Launched on 1 May 1949, British Transport Films was led for 25 years by Edgar Anstey – a founding father of the British documentary movement – and became one of the largest industrial film units in Britain. This 2-disc collection includes 14 newly remastered films, most of which have never been released on DVD before, including Railbus for the 80’s, Five in Millions and Speedlink: The Quiet Revolution. Also included on this release is a new score for Safe on the Track? by composer Mordecai Smyth.
Includes a fully illustrated booklet with new writing on the films by BFI curator and BTF expert Steven Foxon and post-war transport historian and enthusiast Stephen Edwards.
This digitally remastered collection is a must for the transport enthusiast and the documentary aficionado alike.
One of the most critically acclaimed and best-loved films produced within the British documentary movement, Night Mail tells the fascinating story of the Travelling Post Office from Euston to Glasgow and the workers who operated it. Given a modest budget of only £2,000 and conceived as a routine film promoting Post Office services, the collective talents of the GPO film unit turned out an ambitious and inventive fusion of image, sound, music and poetry that became an instant classic and archetype of the genre. The memorable final section of the film, featuring Benjamin Britten’s innovative score and verse by WH Auden timed to the rhythms of the train, is justly famous, and perhaps the most lyrical final sequence in the history of documentary film.
With music by Benjamin Britten and the poetry of W.H. Auden.
1 Disc. Year: 1936. Black & White. Running time approx: 23 min + 93 min extras. Directors: Harry Watt and
The story of the Travelling Post Office from Euston to Glasgow. Extras: The Way to the Sea (1936) Spotlight on the Night Mail (1948) Thirty Million Letters (1963) Night Mail 2 (1986) (updated version of Night Mail featuring poetry by Blake Morrison).