British Universities Film & Video Council

moving image and sound, knowledge and access


The collection was started by Mr Grant as a schoolboy in the 1940s collecting small rolls of 35mm film. The Archive has grown from this modest beginning to be of interest now at international level. The collection embraces the important and early material collected by the late Graham Head between 1918 and 1980, and original camera negatives 1899-1906 of Mitchell and Kenyons fiction films.
Feature films; Advertising films; Trailers, films; Aviation; Film Equipment; Early cinema; Collings, Esme; Friese-Greene, William; Smith, George Albert; Williamson, James; Cinema equipment; Kenyon, James
Access available. By arrangement. Applications from students and serious researchers are encouraged, but as the film collection is only one element of the Archive’s wide collection of cinema history, the Archive is not sympathetic to poorly researched ‘trawling’ enquiries.
Viewing on premises.
Charges for research for broadcast productions. Charges may be made for research for academic purposes. A price list is available upon request.
Copyright held only for some of the material. Copyright advice available. Copyright adviser: Martin Humphries.

Moving Image, Audio and Related Documentation Holdings

Film: 17,000,000 feet. General fact and fiction material from 1895. Early films from ‘The Brighton School’, including work of G.A. Smith, James Williamson, William Friese-Greene, Esme Collings, Mitchell and Kenyon films (including fake Boer War films). Large collection of aviation material. Cinema (and TV) advertisements from 1920s to date, coming attraction day-titles and announcements. Over 1,000 feature film trailers: 6,000,000 feet of feature film from 1920s on. Advertising, feature films.
Film components: 35mm, positive film, fine grain print, combined negatives.


Card catalogue

Additional Information

Film stock cataloguing incomplete but ongoing on card index. Computerising.
Other information
Over 1,000,000 film stills, portraits, colour transparencies, lobby cards and posters. Also programmes, synopses and campaign books, film fan and trade periodicals, film reports, scripts, etc. Reference library of over 2,500 books. Many trade periodicals, including a complete run of The Cinema News and Property Gazette 1912-1975. There are files of letters, photos and sound tapes concerning ‘Brighton School’ pioneers. Photographs of cinemas. There are a great many other items concerning cinemas - silent and sound projectors, slide lanterns and other equipment, staff uniforms, carpet samples, light fittings, ticket machines etc.
Conservation policy
Only terminally unstable nitrate is junked.

Main Contact

Mr. Martin Humphries
020 7840 2200
020 7840 2299
The Cinema Museum
The Master’s House, The Old Lambeth Workhouse
2 Dugard Way, Kennington
SE11 4TH

Alternate Contact

Martin Humphries

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