Old Images of Slough, Berkshire

Old map of the area around Slough Berkshire published 1892

Glimpse history through old images of Slough, Berkshire, England.

Adelphi Ballroom 1933

When the Adelphi Cinema opened in 1930, it had a cineman offering 1,398 seats in the stalls and further 644 seats in the balcony, with a large stage and Christie 3Manual/8Rank theatre organ. The venue also had a café and a large ballroom.

This footage from 1933 shows a very famous band of the time performing in the Adelphi Ballroom.

Billy Cotton And His Band (1933)- British Pathé on YouTube

Ploughing Match 1934

Traditional ploughing horses and new mechanical tractors were pitted against each other in 1934 in a ploughing contest, at a time Slough was still in Buckinghamshire and farmed by traditional methods.

Ancient And Modern (1934) – British Pathé on YouTube

Empire Day 1938

Slough was still in Buckinghamshire when the speedboat Empire Day was christened by Lord Strabolgi.

Empire Day was designed by T.E. Lawrence, better known as Lawrence of Arabia, who was teetotal. Therefore, the first bottle used for the boat’s christening was champagne, the second was lemonade.

We see T.E. Lawrence’s engineer friend, Edward Spurr get into the new speedboat, which everyone hoped would set a new world sea speed record by breaking the Italian record of 69 miles an hour for the 1½-litre class.

The launch at Lake Windermere, where the Empire Day broke the one-and-a half litre world speed record in September 1938, can be seen in a separate film in the British Pathé archives.

Christening New Speedboat ’empire Day’ At Slough (1938) – British Pathé on YouTube

Slough Garden 1960

Silent, black and white footage of Mr Prescott building his own autogiro in his garden shows a number of nearby homes in the background.

Man Makes His Own Autogiro (1960) – British Pathé on YouTube

Bill Howard, here called Wee Willy Howard, took on a £20 bet that he could eat a giant skate weighing 14 stone. An audience at the market stood round to watch the event.

The 20 stone man measured 59 inches round the waist, but after drinking lots of beer as he ate huge pieces of battered fish, he had to give up.

Fish Beats Big Eater (1961) – British Pathé on YouTube

Garment Factory 1965

Manager Director Rolph Pasold or Hasso used a bicycle to move around the large garment factory, and intoduced roller skates for his staff to use.

Workers On Skates (1965) – British Pathé on YouTube

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