Books, magazines and sheet music

Many 1930s film-related books and annuals, as well as some magazines and sheet music, were donated to Cinema Culture in 1930s Britain, including a number by participants Margaret Young and Betty Cooper. Others were purchased for the project for use as reminiscence prompts and further items were added to the collection during the research phase of CMDA for use in creative writing workshops.

These materials are available to view in Lancaster University library and access can be arranged by getting in touch with Special Collections.

Selection of front covers from books, annuals, magazines and sheet music donated to CCINTB
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Selection of scans from books and annuals acquired during CMDA

This includes the ‘Daily Express Film Book’ (SN-20-002BK002), a large-format hard-cover book aimed at film fans and containing numerous star photographs and film stills along with short blurbs and articles, which was acquired in 2020 by CMDA Co-Investigator Sarah Neely for use as a stimulant in writing workshops. Although no publication date appears in the book itself, internal evidence—including an article on ‘Great Films of the Past Five Years’ by ‘Picturegoer’ critic Ernest Betts–would date it to 1935. Purchased by CMDA from an internet auction site, the book’s provenance is obscure. On inquiry, however, the seller indicated that it had probably been bought at a Vintage Fair in Farnham, Surrey. Nothing is known about its former owner. The book contains handwritten listings of films seen between 1929 and 1976 at cinemas in several towns, including Farnham, around the Surrey-Hampshire border (SN-20-002PW001).