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Duration 4:15

Edwardian Folkestone at play

In this clip we see people bathing in the sea with interesting details like the bathing booths. Later people are shown having portrait photos taken. We get a brief glimpse of women letting their hair down, just a little. We then get a lengthy shot of a roller coaster ride, much of it shot on the ride. Finally we see Edwardians walking on the promenade and then at Church.

Context

The Edwardian period was in many ways Britain at its peak. The British Empire dominated the world in military and financial terms. The middle classes were usually well paid and could afford to own their homes and take holidays. There was of course another side to this world. The Edwardian period saw terrible poverty and harsh working conditions for the poorest.

Interesting or important points about the film

The real value of this clip is in the contrast with Edwardian Folkestone at work. That said, there are many interesting details. The roller coaster ride reminds us of the primary aim of early film-makers, profit via entertainment. These shots must have been a revelation in 1904. We are also reminded how life was more communal in many ways than it is today, although town centres at holidays and weekends are still busy places today.

Please note that this video is silent.

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