Eileen's Wedding 31st October 1955; Joan's wedding 31st March 1956
16mm film Colour;Black & White Mute 1955-1956 12:53
Summary: Great period footage of two suburban London weddings in these family films from the 1950s.
Watch how people acted and dressed at weddings at this time – a particular stand-out is the shot of four young men with huge quiffs deep in conversation. Also has nice scenes of children playing, couples dancing, speeches, confetti and cake-cutting.
Title number: 19679
LSA ID: LSA/26119
Description: A film of two family weddings (Eileen and Joan Gatland) and receptions in 1955 and 1956.
Two bridesmaids step out of a wedding car , carrying a small bouquet of pink and white flowers, then a bride (Eileen Gatland) appears accompanied by her father. From the church (St Andrew's Church, Willesden) the bride and groom appear at the church entrance looking slightly nervous! The happy couple mingle among the congregation and are covered in confetti, guests mingle excitedly around the newly weds. They escape by making their way to the wedding car, more confetti is thrown and they pose for the camera, the bridesmaid makes adjustments to the bride's headdress, and the best man conducts activity in the background. The groom carefully carries the wedding dress train into the car and we see the happy couple leave. The church is located in a high street with shops which can be seen in the background.
We see scenes from the wedding reception as the couple and guests tuck into the food, the reception is possibly in a residential house and guests talk to each other. Speeches are made by a couple of men and the happy couple cut the cake.
A number of the guests are enjoying the party and smiling at the camera, the bride and groom are now relaxed and she sits on the groom's knee smiling, the guests enjoy a few drinks and a good time appears to be had by all!
Intertitle; The wedding of Miss J Gatland and Mr D Kirk at St Andrew's Church Willesden 31st March 1956.
A number of bridesmaids (one older girl and four young girls) get out of a smart gleaming black car, they are watched by a large excited crowd on a busy high street. A father proudly stands by his daughter, dressed in a white bridal gown, and helps her make adjustments to her veil. She holds a distinctive purple and white bouquet, and wears red framed glasses. She enters the church with her bridesmaids while a large group of spectators watch excitedly and expectantly.
The bride and groom leave the church and guests and family members wish them well, as they pose for the photographer. They are under the church arch by the entrance and smile happily for the camera.
Confetti is thrown by the guests as the couple unsuccessfully try to avoid it and the groom struggles to keep his hair in place. The bridesmaids are formally posed for the group photo.
Guests are seen straining to get a view of the couple during the photos, and they make their way to the car. The church is situated on a busy high road, and traffic and red buses pass by. Opposite we can see a row of shops with United Dairies on the corner.
We see a number of guests arriving for the reception, getting out of a car. Scenes from the reception, everyone is very smartly dressed, and enjoying the food.
The children are all sitting together, smiling, laughing and making faces at the camera. A toast is given at the top table by the best man, and the bride and groom raise their glasses. A man in glasses reads a number of telegrams to the guests. An elderly lady in a pink cardigan smiles and laughs at the camera, looking slightly embarrassed. The groom entertains the guests with his speech while the bride gazes into her glass, seemingly lost in thought.
The party is in full swing and we see a number of groups dancing in a row and a circle, perhaps performing Knees up Mother Brown. A trio of musicians are playing on stage.
A large group of children are enthusiastically playing musical chairs, laughing and joking with each other. The bridegroom tries to join in the fun but is quickly told to clear off by a young boy.
Two couples waltz around clearly enjoying the moment and occasion.
End title: The End
Cast: Eileen Gatland; Joan Gatland; Mrs Lawford; Alan Lawford
Further information: From the Lawford family films collection. Mr Lawford worked for Kodak.
Keywords: Weddings; Customs and traditions; fashions; Family gatherings
In galleries: Love and Marriage
Locations: United Kingdom; England; London; Brent