This black and white film was made by the Oulton chemist Paul Volter. The scenes were shot around Oulton just before or just after the end of the Second World War in 1945. They show St John’s church and school, Volter’s shop on Aberford Road, and the Nookin, a famous old house dating to the 17th century.
There are also fleeting glimpses of the New Masons and the Three Horse Shoes pubs and a couple of scenes showing Pear Tree Cottage where there was a small shop run by Minnie Cheeseborough. There are shots of Mr Volter himself, his wife Annie and their daughter Margaret, seen with what could be her grandparents at the Volter’s house on Park Lane in Rothwell.
The Oulton vicar, the Reverend Geoffrey Hamish Mercer and his wife Elsie are pictured outside the Vicarage, and the verger, George Raybould, is filmed walking through the graveyard with Margaret Volter and two other children. (George lived in a cottage near the Three Horse Shoes and he worked closely with the gravedigger, Edwin Saunders, who used to taunt passers by saying to them “Tha’s next!”)
The headmaster of Oulton school and football scout, John Biscomb Plows, is pictured posing at the school entrance with three of his fellow teachers including Eric Thackray and Florence Parker. There are several shots of unidentified residents posing for Mr. Volter’s camera outside their houses.
Also shown is the wedding of sailor Eric Taylor and his bride Olive Wilson at Oulton church in the summer of 1944. Olive’s father, Harry Wilson, was a local cobbler. Another sequence shows a group of boys with the animals at Greenland Farm.
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1. Rothwell Park: Margaret Volter and two friends. Oulton church in distance.
2. Reverend Geoffrey Mercer and wife Elsie.
3. Verger: George Raybould. He lived in a cottage near to the Three Horse Shoes. “He kept you in order” – boy who was in choir. Edwin Saunders was the grave digger.
4. Church steeple.
5. Children with verger.
6. Same children in churchyard.
7. Cottages, children.
8. Old woman poses
9. Castleford or Wakefield bus. Man on pavement.
10. Woman or girl on chair in front of cottage.
11. Woman looking over wall is Miss Nettleton, teacher at Rothwell Council School then Oulton St. John’s School. Cottages. Two children walk into shot, then a third.
13. Man poses
14. Cut to same man walking past cottage.
15. Same cottage.
16. Policeman at Three Hose Shoes with bicycle. Could be P.C. King.
17. New Masons pub. Same three children on pavement.
18. Older woman.
19. Woman behind bushes at Pear Tree Cottage shop.
20. Same woman and two children.
21. Margaret Volterr, in garden at Park Lane house.
28. Wedding of sailor Eric Taylor from Meynell Avenue in Rothwell and Olive May Wilson. 12 August 1944. Her father was Harry Wilson. He was born in Lofthouse. His father was a miner and Harry had worked in the pits. Became a cobbler and had a hut outside their house, 31 Holmsley Field Lane. Previously Harry and Lucy Ellen Wilson (nee Blowers) had lived at Fleet Mills. Olive was born in 1924. The bride was given away by her father. She was “attired in figured satin, with train and veil, and her bouquet was of red roses,” according to the Wakefield Express. The attendants were Doris and Betty WIlson, Audrey Bayliss, Margaret Voelter, Brenda Sidebottom, Betty Dobson and Doreen Blowers (cousins). They were “attired in blue crepe and carried pink roses and sweet peas.” Trainbearer, Stephen Noble. Eric’s brother Harold was best man. Groomsmen, L. Ward and B. Bougham. Nuptial music played on the organ by Tom Noble (He ran a dance band which played at the Harold Hall and the Drill Hall.) The reception was at the Miner’s Welfare.
29. Same wedding.
30. Close Up of bride, groom, bridesmaids.
31. Close Up of bride, groom.
32. Wedding reception with wedding cake.
33. Volter’s shop. Two men walk in, probably miners buying their supply of chewing tobacco or “baccy”.
35. Three women outside Barker’s shop.
36. Women, two boys, bikes.
37. Manor Farm and Oulton school.
38. Headmaster John Biscomb Plows next to Florence Parker. Eric Thackray on left standing next to unknown teacher. He lived on Church Avenue in Swillington.
39. Close Up teachers.
40. Boys, two white pigs, one black.
41. John Paul Volter and his assistant.
42. Shop front. Volter and boy. This is Dennis Watson who worked for Volter from the age of 12 while he was about 12 or13 years old before leaving school. He delivered medicines by bicycle throughout the village and bought a telescope from Mr. Volter by having a shilling a week taken from his wages.
43. Garden with Margaret Volter.
44. Clsoe Up of Margaret.
45. Margaret, women, The Nookin.
46. Signpost, cottages, boy on bike, women with pram, man in hat with woman and girl.
47. Blossom, garden.
48. Blossom, Margaret, and Mrs Volter? A dog.
49. Pan of houses, field
50. Margaret in field, Greenland Farm.
51. CU cow.
52. Jump cut cow.
53. Jump cut cow.
54. Cow runs away.
56. CU heifer.
58. Cow inside.
59. Jump cut to cow horns.
61. Bull with ring.
62. Jump cut to bull with ring.
63. CU bull.
64. Bad shot.
65. Old man, woman, Margaret Volter at Park Lane.
66. Mrs Volter, Margaret.
67. Old man, old woman, Margaret.
68. Volter, old man in hat, Margaret.