London in 1927 – in colour

By 1927, film was not new. It wasn’t even a novelty. But it was monochrome and as a result, every bit of news footage and virtually every photograph taken during the 1920s was monochrome. Weirdly, as a result, we tend to think of the 1920s as actually being monochrome.

Yet there were pioneers of colour film working at the time, including William Friese-Greene, who allowed his son Claude to shoot a series of travelogues using the colour film techniques he was experimenting with. And here below is the London travelogue. Weirdly, despite the obvious huge changes in terms of transport, traffic, etc, by being in colour, suddenly 1927 doesn’t seem so remote anymore. In fact, it’s sobering to think that the footage shot here is about as distant from us in time as the construction of Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar’s Square was when William Friese-Greene went passed it.

[via @thejimsmith]




  • Mark Carroll

    Thank you, that was interesting to see.

  • Hazel

    It's actually spelt Friese-Greene and this article from the BFI has great background information. http://www.bfi.org.uk/news-opi

  • Thanks for that. I've corrected the page now. Oddly, I spent about five minutes trying ever so hard to spell it according to the BFI page, which shows you just how bad a brain block I have with names.