OVFM – CLASSIC NEWSREELS – Second Lockdown Edition!

Second Lockdown Edition!

Classic Newsreels about Orpington and the Surrounding Area

As well as making a wide variety of films including dramas, documentaries, and comedies, for over 30 years Orpington Video & Film Makers (OVFM) has been filming in and around Orpington to produce a newsreel of the previous year’s events to include in our Spring Shows. To try to relieve any boredom you may be feeling during the lockdown we have made four of our oldest newsreels available and we hope these will interest and entertain you.

Look back at events such as The Great Storm of 1987 as captured by our members or the end of the red telephone box in 1988; see how the shops in the area have changed, and enjoy a reminder of the big celebrations for the new Millennium 20 years ago! And don’t forget to watch out in case you recognise people or perhaps yourself in any of the scenes.”

N.B – Unfortunately the sound quality on some of the clips is not as good as we would like but we hope it does not detract too much from your enjoyment.  You need to bear in mind that these events were captured over 30 years ago when the equipment didn’t have all the advantages of equipment today.  The newsreels were digitised using a National Lottery grant and form part of our extensive archive of over 850 films.

If you wish to learn more about OVFM, feel free to look around this website for further information, where you can also view a small selections of films we have made, and get an idea of the sort of film projects we undertake as a club. If you have any queries then please contact our chairman Jane Oliver via e-mail at info@ovfm.org.uk

Thank you for reading and enjoy this trip down memory lane!


UPDATED – November 15th *











* Just added!







To view a selection of films made by members of OVFM please click HERE

These illustrate the variety of films we make, so if you like what you see you are welcome to come along to a couple of meetings to see whether you would like to join us – once the lockdown is over of course!

Finally, we would also like your help. Please click HERE for details!

Thank you!

27 Replies to “OVFM – CLASSIC NEWSREELS – Second Lockdown Edition!”

  1. Thanks for sharing the 1987 and 1988 newsreels – thoroughly enjoyed looking back on events from those times as well as giggling at outfits and reminiscing about long-gone shops. Brilliant. Thank you.

  2. These are wonderful. My house is shown in the 1987 film. My neighbour belonged the Photographic Society. We didn’t move into the house until 1993 so it was nice to see the road before we moved in!!

  3. Thank you so much for this. I am the dance teacher for the Orpington MayQueen and I was mayqueen in 1997. I have been looking for footage of all of the carnival floats we worked so hard on these are brilliant videos thank you.

  4. Absolutely great videos.

    Tried to spot if any St John Ambulance volunteers were in the videos but could not see them. It is the Orpington St John Ambulance 100th Anniversary this year so looking for any information, photos or videos of their history. If you do have any videos I would be keen to see them.


    1. Hi John, Thanks for watching!

      I wouldn’t be surprised to find we had some footage somewhere in out extensive archive though it would take some searching to find it. Please bear with us as we put your request to other club members.

      Lee Relph, OVFM Webmaster

  5. Thank you very much film society, just watched the 87 clip and what a great bit of nostalgia. Although from Orpington in days of the great storm I was living in the very centre of Tunbridge Wells and woke up to similar scenes and an eerily quiet town that morning. I’d slept through the storm but caught up on it on an old transistor radio I had (power cuts). I walked into town and nothing was open as all roads in were blocked so the shop keepers could not get in to town. I remember Jaeger’s plate glass windows had been blown out and you could have just walked off with a Winter collection. By the way was it your society that the photo journalist Victor Blackman used to be a member?

  6. Hello John.
    My name’s Reg Lancaster and Vic was a colleague of mine at the Daily Express. When I returned from an eight year stint working for the Express in Paris Vic suggested I join what was then called Orpington Cine Society. He agreed to meet me outside the meeting hall but was suddenly sent off to Japan on a job, so I was left to go in on my own. I must say it was one of the best things I ever did.

  7. Thanks Reg, I always wanted to be a newspaper tog but I let myself be talked out of it when I was only 17 and doing a Saturday job at Boots in Orpington by the Photo department mgr who said I’d never make any money in it. He may well have been right but I feel I’d have enjoyed the life? Vic used to write for AP magazine at the time. May I ask if he’s still around and ticking?

    1. Unfortunately Vic died in 1988, of a heart attack I believe.
      He was only 66.

      1. That’s so sad to hear, far too young to go, he seemed a good man. Well his writing in Amateur Photographer magazine inspired me to a lifetime with photography as a very enjoyable hobby so thank you Vic.

  8. A fascinating trip down memory lane. How far back do these newsreels go? Thanks for sharing – I would be interested in seeing some more! I don’t suppose you have one of the 1963-4 snow lockdown – I lived in Petts Wood then and the stream overflowed and flooded houses at the bottom of Birchwood Road and we were ‘locked in’ by the snow and unable to go to school. I remember that tobogganing was very popular down Town Court Crescent!

    1. Glad you enjoyed them, Margot. Sorry, but these are the first newsreels the club produced. We have a few individual films made by members from the 1960s in our archive but none of the 63/64 snow. I’ll check whether any members are aware of any private footage of it.

      1. Thanks David – just a thought! So long ago now but I still remember it vividly. With all the social media nowadays, there will be plenty of footage of everything in the years to come – probably too much!

        1. Members have some footage of 1960s snow but not from the area you asked about, sorry. We are about to put up some more newsreels and other films made by OVFM members so have a look at the site over the next couple of days.

  9. The 1987 footage reminds me of some of my own earlier memories. The snow, and the hurricane. I remember watching my father’s greenhouse (and it wasn’t small) rolling across the garden, blown by the wind!

    1. Hi Glenn, Thanks for watching. Glad you enjoyed these nostalgic trips through Orpington of yesteryear.

      Lee Relph, OVFM Webmaster

  10. I enjoyed watching the old Newsreels, especially 1987. I’m confined to my bedroom whilst, Chris, my wife resides downstairs. All brought about because she unfortunately caught the virus whilst going under an operation in Darenth valley hospital. She is ok just slightly short of breath but we have to live apart which isn’t much fun. At least i have the OVFM to keep me sane.

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