British Universities Film & Video Council

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Leonard Martin ("Len")


Newsreels / Cinemagazines
Pathe News; British Movietone News
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Len Martin was originally a commentator for Pathe News, his first credit being ‘THE ROYAL WEDDING’ in Pathe News No.60/38 of May 1960. He then joined Movietone for ‘NEVER SUCH A NASTY NOVEMBER’ in British Movietone News No.1904A of December 1965. He then acted as relief for Leslie Mitchell in ‘THE CUP FINAL IN COLOUR’ in British Movietone News No.2188 of May 1971. Martin afterwards acted as one of Mitchell’s regular reliefs, and in January 1975, when British Movietone News became a weekly reel in full colour, became his replacement. Martin also wrote commentaries for Movietone, and worked for television as what Peter Hampton [qv] called ‘the well-known voice behind the BBC football results.' Martin’s commentating credits continue until the final reel, British Movietone News No.2608 of May 1979.

Leonard Martin was also a commentator, from 1961, for the Commonwealth and United States versions of the ‘news magazine’ British Calendar, later Calendar [1960-1969]. This series was made by British Movietonews Ltd, and later Kay [West End] Laboratories Ltd, on behalf of the Central Office of Information [COI]. He also provided the commentary for another COI production, ‘COMPUTERS AND CONTROL’, Frontier No.7 [1965].


Information from Peter Hampton, March 1999: Peter Hampton ‘Facts about British Movietone News’ (May 1979), copy in BUFVC: NoS Number 26246; British Movietone News Number 1904A; Date released 2/12/1965: NoS Number 109173; Pathe News Number 60/38; Date released 9/5/1960: The National Archives (TNA): Public Record Office (PRO) INF 6/132: NoS Number 324973; Frontier Number 7; Date released 1965.

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