‘The Public’ – launches Full Circle at an archive screening event in West Bromwich….

The Public, the digital arts centre in West Bromwich was the launch for Full Circle on 2nd April

On a lovely sunny evening in West Bromwich, local history groups came together to  help The Public launch the Full Circle project. The Public is supporting MACE in the search for films via the Full Circle project. Eventually these films will be screened at The Public in a big celebration event of our screen heritage.

Whats on at The Public.....

The Public digital arts centre is already becoming part of community life, and once the shopping centre building works are complete it will become an integral part of the community. There was an Indian wedding going on when I was there – lots of lovely food smells…..

The two friendly staff at reception - On the night were short film screenings of archive footage from the Sandwell archives, Oldbury History Society collection, 1960s ITV news items. As well as a short film made by a local film-maker Billy Dosanhjh "Miracle in West Bromwich".

Entrance to one of the many screening rooms at The Public with the Full Circle bannerFilms are part of our screen  heritage and The Public and MACE are working together to collect and preserve them for future generations to enjoy. Films and moving images have the capacity to reveal life over the last 100 years – like no other record.

Keith Hodgkins and members of the Tipton Civic Society came to support the launch and watch some archive footage of the local area

Audience members were from local history groups in the area who are helping to search for films and moving images

Members of Tipton Civic Society and Tipton Harriers Athletic Club

MACE has recently supplied the Tipton Harriers Athletic Club with copies of  some of their old films to help them celebrate their centenary anniversary earlier in the year.

Roxie and Chris of "Stirchley Happenings" an active local group in the area who also put on film screenings of archive footage supplied by MACE

Phil Leach, Curator at MACE put together some 1960s footage from the ITV news archive

This screening was a special event to celebrate and share rare and unique images of The Black Country. It was jointly hosted by us (MACE) and The Public. We are looking for groups to join us in the search for film to help unearth some  hidden treasures of our screen heritage.

JP our friendly audio-visual technician did a fantastic job on the night! Thank you

Keith Hodgkins brought along some films for the Full Circle project - these will be assessed and then relevant footage will be copied onto DVD for the local groups to enable them to share the films by giving a community screening

Graham Peet, Exhibitions Manager of The Public who not only gave an interesting talk on The Value of collecting Media, but also gave a tour of the Publics facilities. Graham can be contacted on: 0121 533 7161 http://www.thepublic.com. For more details of the Full Circle Project have a look at the Full Circle section of this website or contact Kay Ogilvie Senior Curator Full Circle kay.ogilvie@tiscali.co.uk


Saturday 2nd April Collecting Midlands Media Treasures Event at The Public West Bromwich

This Saturday, 2nd April Full Circle Senior Curator – Kay Ogilvie will be at The Public in West Bromwich. This is a special event to celebrate and share rare and unique moving images of The Black Country, jointly hosted by the Media Archive for Central England (MACE) and The Public.

We are looking for groups to join us in the search for film to help unearth some hidden treasures of our screen heritage.

Film and videotape have recorded images that are crucial to our understanding of the last 100 years and home movies especially have the capacity to reveal our way of life like no other records.

Saturday 2 April 2011
6pm – 9pm
Free event
Free refreshments and nibbles


‘The value of collecting Media’
Graham Peet, Exhibitions Manager The Public

‘The Full Circle Film project & how to get involved’
Kay Ogilvie, Senior Curator Full Circle/MACE

Short film screenings of archive footage from the Sandwell archives, Oldbury history society collection, 1960s ITV news items.

Archive extracts from the short film ‘Miracle in West Bromwich’
by Billy Dosanjh

Archive extracts from Malcolm X
by Steve Page

A personal tour of The Public facilities and exhibitions
by Graham Peet


Purchased The Black Country 1969? Do you have 5 Mins to write a review?

Have you recently purchased our first DVD release, The Black Country 1969, directly through us or through another retail outlet?

If so, we’d like to hear from you…

…We have published a short Customer Survey which includes the option to star rate the DVD and write a review. You also have the option to subscribe to our enewsletter to be one of the first to know about our next DVD releases and news on our forthcoming brand new look to our website!

If you have purchased the DVD, you can take the survey by clicking the link below:


Thanks for purchasing and for supporting MACE.

Have a great weekend!


Trailer for The Black Country 1969

Trailer for our first DVD release, The Black Country 1969. This trailer is low res – the DVD is the original broadcast quality.

The Black Country 1969, a poetic and poignant film from 1969 looking at the changing landscape of the region through the eyes of its people, is available from http://www.amazon.co.uk, http://www.teetshirts.com, http://www.macearchive.org and various other local outlets. It is £14.99 plus p&p.  Email macearchive@le.ac.uk for further details.


MACE collection continues to grow

The MACE collection continues to grow thanks to the generosity of the public as well as many private and public organisations who have entrusted their rare and often unique films to us. 

Fascinating films that have recently been seen include colour film of a visit by King George VI to a glassworks in Smethwick in 1940; amateur film of the 1938 West Bromwich Carnival; and a big day in the sporting heritage of Nottingham – 4 May 1959 – the day the victorious Nottingham Forest side paraded the F.A. Cup through the city’s streets.

We also continue to work closely with other archives in ensuring that films that are outside our collecting and preservation remit – usually films without a Midlands connection – that are uncovered are preserved in the most suitable places.  One recent example was a copy of ‘Scene: Let There Be Light’ a television drama made for schools broadcast by the BBC in 1970.  The production, by the BAFTA winning playwright Alan Plater, was missing from the BBC archives until we turned up a copy in Leicester and with the agreement of the depositor were able to pass the film back to the BBC.

Mnemosyne showing at The Public, West Bromwich 13 Jan to 7 March 2010

MACE are proud to have supplied material to Black Audio Film Collective artist John Akomfrah’s critically acclaimed film on migration and memory, Mnemosyne, which is being screened at The Public, West Bromwich until 7th March.

The film was made for the BBC’s Made in England, a project dedicated to exploring how England – the place and the people – is expressed through art.

Director, Ken Russell writes in The Times, that Mnemosyne is ‘a mind-blowing film that merges documentary and artistic essay in a way that astonishes, confounds and moves.’

Mr Akomfrah was given access to the BBC Archives as well as drawing material from MACE and the Birmingham Central Library. The footage he has used from MACE’s collections is:

[Midlands News: 04.08.1958: Black Convention March]

[Midlands News: 01.08.1962: Vox Pops on Dudley Race Riots]

[Midlands News: 07.01.1959: Snowy weather]

[Midlands News: 20.12.1960: Snow scene]

[ATV Today: 09.04.1973: Freak snow storms]

[Midlands News: 27.10.1959: Storm damage in the Midlands]

[Midlands News: 22.01.1958: Snow in Birmingham outside TV Theatre]

[Midlands News: 07.06.1962: Nigerian royalty at Snow Hill]

[Midlands News: 27.04.1961: Coventry’s slums]

[Midlands News: 25.01.1960: Flooding at Kidderminster, Hereford and Birmingham]

[ATV Today 13/01/1977: Chaotic Weather Conditions]

Living Together (1971)

For further information on the screenings, visit The Public’s Website

Information on John Akomfrah can be found at Smoking Dog Films

To read Ken Russell’s full review in The Times, CLICK HERE.

For more details or to arrange a group screening please call The Public’s reception on 0121 533 7161.