Marlow, Bucks: Old Photos & Film

Marlow Bucks Buckinghamshire England UK local history

Marlow has pretty, historic streets and weeping willows along the banks of the Thames. First footage of the attractive Buckinghamshire town appears during the First World War, which at the time was known as the Great War.

One of the highlights of this page is the 1919 footage of the Ladies Eights Marlow Regatta (3rd item down). Read the description to see why.

Marlowe 1900-1920

“Boulters Lock And Marlow (1914-1918)

YouTube channel British Pathé

“Boulters Lock Aka Boultons Lord (1919)

British Pathé filmed a busy day at Boultons Lord in 1919.

YouTube channel British Pathé

“Ladies Eights Marlow Regatta (1919)

This was the very first women’s VIII boat race in Britain, happening a few months after the end of the Great War (WW1). The students at Newnham College (still an all-women’s college a century later in 2019) struggled to find competitors, and Oxford University refused to allow any of their female students to participate. The London School of Medicine, however, agreed to forward a team. A small crowd turned out to watch, and British Pathé filmed the historic event.

British Pathé: “Marlow – Ladies Eights – Newnham College beat London School of Medicine.”

Marlowe In The 1920s

“Thames Regatta AKA Thames Regatta Season Opens (1920)

The 1920 Thames Regatta season opened to large crowds enjoying brilliant weather, and British Pathé was there to film it.

“Ladies Uni Boat Race Aka Ladies University Boat Race (1922)

In 1922, British Pathé was back at Marlow filming the latest ladies’ university boat race between Newnham College, Cambridge and the London School of Medicine. The footage ends with a female official presenting the trophy to Newnham’s team captain.

“Shall We See Ourselves Win (1924)

In 1924 six members of the Oxford Crew examined the British Pathé movie camera while standing at the side of the River Thames at Marlow.

“Unique Events At Marlow Regatta (1925)

The novelty canoe rescue races and polo tournament were filmed by British Pathé in 1927. It starts with young men climbing down from the bridge onto suspended tyres, waiting for their teammates to pick them up in a canoe. But some end up swimming alongside the boats, while others climb up the ropes again, and the canoes crash too.

“The Last Salute (1927)

British Pathé filmed the 1927 funeral procession of Sir George Higginson, said to be the oldest general in the British army. There was a strong military theme, with soldiers in busbies present and a Union flag draped over the coffin. Interesting to see the presence of a funeral car in 1927. At the burial site, the soldiers raised their guns and fired a last salute.

“It’s No “Walk Over” For The Light Blues (1928)

The full title of this British Pathé film reads “It’s no “walk over” for the Light Blues! – Oxford… on first outing on tidal waters… impress the critics with their power “behind the blade” as against their rivals’ finish & style.” Various shots show the Oxford University rowing team in training for the Oxford and Cambridge Boat Race, followed by a group of men in a motorboat. 

Marlowe In The 1930s

“With The Thames At Its Loveliest (1932)

British Pathé filmed Marlow’s famous novelty regatta in 1932. Crowds watch from the banks of the River Thames as the boat teams attempt their climb through a suspended tyre. One of the canoes capsizes and all the occupants fall out!

“Fun And Frolic (1933)

The 1933 footage from British Pathé records the young men and women racing against each other in a novelty boat race, watched by spectators on the bank. Then they have to climb through a suspended tyre. Several boats sink, and many more young people fall into the river.

“Marlow Regatta (1934)

In 1934 British Pathé filmed men and women racing in the Regatta with their frying pans, sticks, pans, and pots. The crowd cheers as each participant struggles to squeeze through the suspended tyres. Then the crews must change punts in mid stream, which is so difficult many end up in the river!

“Fun At Marlow (1935)

British Pathé recorded the punt and canoe races at the Regatta in 1935. Race participants struggle to get through the suspended tyres and back into their boats.

“Marlow Regatta (1937)

In 1937 British Pathé filmed the crowds and boats gathered for the annual Marlow Regatta. In this race each member of the crew had to get through the hanging tyre head first, and then return to boat to continue the race. Broomsticks, paddles, and pans were all used to move the boats. 

“Marlow on the River Thames in the 1930s – 50s

This is 16mm cine film taken between the 1930s to 1950s. At Marlow, on the river Thames, we find lots of canals, locks, boats and children with prams and toys, and the Compleat Angler Hotel.

YouTube channel steve johnson

Marlow In The 1940s

“Marlow Aka Marlow Reach (1942)

YouTube channel British Pathé

“Floods at Marlow Weir

In the wettest November for 46 years, British Movietone filmed the weather’s impact on Marlow Weir.

Marlow In The 1950s

“Marlow – Aquatic Sports (1954)

This 1954 footage from British Pathé shows young men having lots of fun in their canoes.

Marlow In The 1960s

“Homes On Wheels (1965)

British Pathé filmed people enjoying their stay in a caravan on a Marlow camping site. Scenes include the crowded swimming pool, the supermarket, and the immaculately maintained gardens around the caravans.

“Modern Aztec (1966)

British Pathé filmed artists George and Doreen Dereford at work on an Aztec mosaic sculpture at their home in Marlow. They’ve also completed a mosaic of a Royal Coat of Arms, commissioned for the British Embassy in Tel Aviv.

The film archive holds a letter from George and Doreen, and a news cutting about their work.

“Marlow And London River Scenes (1969)

This British Pathé footage opens with tourists enjoying barge rides on the river Thames. Includes barges, private boats, yachts, boys, swans and a small frog! Later scenes take in the key sights of London from the river.

Marlow In The 1970s

“6998 Burton Agnes Hall, ”THE MARLOW DONKEY” 1973(SLIDE’S)

Filmed on 15 July 1973 at Marlow railway station. Marlow Branch Centenary: Marlow, Bourne End, Cookham, Maidenhead.”

YouTube channel locomotive67

“Buckinghamshire Traffic (1970-1979)

British Pathé footage of Marlow’s streets in the 1970s. Includes heavy traffic.

“Buckinghamshire street, 1970’s – Film 35541

“Right rear view from vehicle panning along pavement of street of small town of Marlow in Buckinghamshire, looking at shopfronts and banks including Boots, Lloyds, Midland.”

YouTube channel HuntleyFilmArchives

Marlow In The 1980s

“Marlow Donkey Railway, 1980s – Film 1132

“Marlow Donkey railway. Steam locomotives brought out of retirement in 1980. Steam enthusiasts wait and watch at railway stations. Footage taken from the rear of the moving train as it passes through stations. Small boy enjoys a trip on the train. Marlow to Bourne End. Station signs for Marlow and Cookham.”

YouTube channel HuntleyFilmArchives

“Marlow, Bucks – late 80’s

YouTube channel Steve P

“Marlow High Street, Bucks. Christmas 1989 (I think)

A slightly fuzzy trip back to Christmas 1989 in Marlow.

YouTube channel Steve P

Marlow In The 1990s

“Marlow, Bucks July 1990

A quick look at the town back in July 1990.

YouTube channel Steve P

Marlow In The 21st Century

“The Queen’s Golden Jubilee visit to Marlow in 2002

The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh visited Marlow in June 2002 to unveil a statue of Sir Steve Redgrave, the Olympic oarsman who comes from Marlow, in Higginson Park. “Enormous crowds enjoyed the Royal walkabout after the ceremony. The weather was overcast but dry!”

YouTube channel Russell Crombie

“Drive through Marlow, Buckinghamshire

A drive through the picturesque town. Some viewers may find the music a bit difficult, in which case just turn the audio to silent.

Uploaded to YouTube on 16 Nov 2006 by PHANT0MMY

“Drive through Marlow, Buckinghamshire April 19, 2011

At the beginning of the clip we see the date stated as 2008, but the title and description is 2011.

YouTube channel Marcus Lambert

“Marlow Half Marathon 2012

“Recorded during the Marlow Half Marathon 2012 which was held on Sunday 4th Nov 2012 in Marlow and organised my Marlow Striders running club.

There was heavy rain before the race which caused roads to run with water and flooding in some places. Luckily the rain stopped just after the race started. In several places, runners had to negotiate flooded roads and the finish field was very muddy.”

Uploaded to YouTube on 4 Nov 2012 by johnjrp01

“Marlow Half Marathon 2013 – Preliminaries

Marlow Half Marathon: Sunday, 3rd November 2013.

Uploaded to YouTube on 3 Nov 2013 by johnjrp01

“Marlow Xmas light switch on

Uploaded to YouTube on 22 Nov 2013 by Videoreporterbfp

“Flooding – Higginson Park – Marlow Buckinghamshire – River Thames 15th Feb 2014

“It’s incredible how much the river has flooded but not surprising with the extremely prolonged rainfall we have had this Winter!”

YouTube channel Daytripdude

“River Thames Flooding in Marlow UK

A beautiful town. On The River Thames, near to London.

Uploaded to YouTube on 17 Feb 2014 by Modi Elnadi

“UK – Spice girl Mel B gets married

“Spice Girl Mel B looked set to wed Sunday (13/09) in the 12th century St John the Baptist Church next to her family home in little Marlow, Buckinghamshire. The service is likely to be conducted by the village’s female vicar, the reverend Sue Irwin.”Scary Spice”, real name Melanie Brown, is to marry stage dancer Jimmy Gulzar. She is three months’ pregnant with his child.”

Uploaded to YouTube on 21 Jul 2015 by AP Archive

“Wedding Videographer and Photographers at Macdonald Compleat Angler in Marlow

Uploaded to YouTube on 11 Nov 2018 by Serenity Pictures

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With thanks to C Morrison for use of the image at the top of this page.