Last month Rye’s Own carried a feature about the making of the film ‘Dunkirk’. Many of the sets were in and around the town.
These pictures kindly supplied by Cliff Bloomfield show how the Strand area was transformed into part of Dunkirk. Mr. Bloomfield was with the Catchment Board in 1957 when the film was made and helped with the construction of the bridge that was built over the river. This bridge was going to be blown up, but there was a change in the script and and this did not happen.
French road signs and posters were erected and the front of the old storehouses on the quay were transformed into shops. The overall effect was very convincing and reminicent of Dunkirk in the days of 1940.
These photographs were taken while the construction of the bridge was still taking place. Great efforts were made to remove all signs of 1950’s life, at one point there were plans afoot to remove all television aerials from the houses in Winchelsea Road and compensate the householders for the inconvenience. This plan was cancelled when several of the people in the houses affected would not go along with the plan. The problem was solved by choosing camera angles very carfully.
“Rye’s Own” February 2001
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