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Britain on Film on Tour

Britain on Film on Tour is a brand new series of archive film programmes for your cinema, film club, museum, archive, or community space. Working with the British Film Institute, we are now able to make available extraordinary treasures from film archives across the UK, available to the British public for the first time. After one of the largest pieces of film preservation and restoration ever undertaken, Britain on Film on Tour reveals new and unseen stories from as early as 1897. This wide and diverse range of material opens up local and regional histories from across the UK.

Britain on Film on Tour brings these rarely-seen films directly to audiences through six specially-curated film programmes.  The tour offers a unique opportunity to enjoy a diverse range of archive films in a collective and communal viewing experience, with the specific programme themes designed to bring this material alive, encouraging enjoyment and engagement, discussion and debate.

The ICO is a registered charity who exist to bring non-commercial films to audiences who may not normally have access to them. The aim of Britain on Film on Tour is not to make a profit – it is to ensure these films reach greater, more diverse audiences.

What films are available?

Britain on Film on Tour features six thematic programmes:

  • Railways, a celebration of Britain's railway history
  • Rural Life, showing the beauty and variety of Britain's countryside
  • Black Britain, featuring rare, little-seen and valuable depictions of black British life on screen
  • Coast and Sea, a nostalgic collection of films from Britain's gorgeous, varied coast
  • LGBT Britain, documenting Britain's inspiring LGBT history on film
  • South Asian Britain on Film - exploring the rich history of the South Asian diaspora in England

Archive film is an exciting way to highlight our social history. The aim of the tour is to ensure these films reach greater, more diverse audiences, where audiences of all ages will have the opportunity to enjoy the film together. This is a great way to start conversations with everyone in your community about our past, present and future.  

Between 2007-2010, the ICO delivered the Mediatheque on Tour programmes - eight collections of films which screened at 425 different locations across the UK to just under 36,000 people. Venues ranged from women’s institutes to care homes to full-time cinemas to schools. Britain on Film on Tour will aim for an even greater range of exhibition spaces and audiences, aiming to replicate this success by providing a range of added-value activities such as programme notes and free speakers for early bookings, as well as targeted national and regional marketing campaigns for each programme.

For more information please contact

Supported by BFI Britain on Film, BFI Unlocking Film Heritage (using funds from the National Lottery) and the Esmee Fairbairn Foundation.

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