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Thursday 12th December 2013

North Devon Movie Bus Project makes the News

Movies on the move: Britain's last-ever mobile cinema - which features footage from SWFTA - has been restored to its former glory after film buffs found it rotting in a field.

Today Britain's last ever mobile cinema is back on the road, restored to its former glory thanks to the love and attention bestowed on it by a pair of film buffs.
Ollie Halls and his partner Emma Giffard, both 35, stumbled across the rusty Bedford SB3 bus eight years ago.

It was one of seven built by the Ministry of Technology in 1967 to tour around the country's factories showcasing modern production techniques.

It showed films including Machining With Throwaway Tip Tools to bosses and workers to try and promote British industry's reputation as a global leader.

After spending £1,200 for the bus in 2005, Mr Halls and Miss Giffard invested £35,000 over the next five years.

With painstaking care and attention the couple renovated the historic vintage cinema, restoring its hidden charms.

And while the other six drab-looking grey cinema vehicles were lost to history, the last existing is now back touring the UK showing a variety of films and archive footage.

When the extensive renovations were complete in 2010, the couple secured National Lottery funding to use films stored by the South West Film and Television Archive.

Their mobile cinema featured on George Clarke's Amazing Spaces on Channel 4 on December 5.

The popular Geordie host described the unique vehicle as looking like a 'collision between a bus and a greenhouse'.

Well-know film critic Mark Kermode also praised Mr Halls and Miss Giffard for: 'Reminding us what a real cinema looks like.'

Find out more about the project here