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Joan Littlewood - The need for Fun Palaces

Joan Littlewood was an influential and sometimes controversial English theatre director best remembered for productions such as “A Taste of Honey”, “Fings Ain’t Wot They Used t’Be” and “Oh, What a Lovely War!” In collaboration with the architect Cedric Price she came up with the idea of Fun Palaces. These were to be moveable constructions that would become a space where people of all ages could come together to explore and learn about arts, science and culture, a “university of the streets”.

Joan directed a film which was reportedly shown at the National Film Theatre in the early 1970s in order to promote this idea, however, it has since disappeared without a trace. This gallery explores rushes shot for the purposes of that film. Filmed in pubs and clubs, galleries and museums, air shows and stock car races, the 16mm films are a window to life and leisure time in '60s London showing the lack of options and highlighting the need for a place such as the Fun Palaces.

Home Movie Day 2017Screen Heritage Conference 2017

London’s Screen Archives
Film London
The Arts Building
Morris Place
London N4 3JG

0207 613 7674

Registered charity number 1163968