NATIONAL GALLERY PICTURES IN WARTIME [Allocated Title]
A film showing the storage of pictures from the National Gallery in Wales during WWII, with footage of the gallery itself during the war and of the picture's return at the end of hostilities.
The film (which is edited but has no commentary) opens with shots of the empty galleries at the National Gallery (footage taken from THE FIRST DAYS (COI 434) ?), then shots of Penrhyn Castle in Bangor, Bangor University and the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth, all temporary storage locations for the pictures after their initial move from London. Workmen are shown preparing Manod Quarry for the pictures - storage rooms inside and a small building outside are constructed. Pictures are transported by road from their temporary storage to the mine, including a very large packing case (which contained the van Dyck 'Charles I on Horseback') from Penrhyn Castle; the vehicle carrying this has to be manhandled to get through the low railway bridge at Blaenau Ffestiniog. Sir Kenneth Clark, the Director of the National Gallery, and others are seen examining pictures in the stores in the mine. The National Gallery lunchtime concert sequence from LISTEN TO BRITAIN (UKY 420) is then included (the only part of the film with sound). Shots show bomb damage to the Gallery. At the end of hostilities, the large packing case is shown arriving back at the Gallery, and the rather dusty pictures - including the van Dyck - are unpacked.