Went The Day Well
Ealing Studios London
Run Time 92 mins approx
English Black & White
Available on DVD and Video In selected outlets.
The Cast: Mervyn Johns Charles Sims, the church warder; Patricia Hayes Daisy, the shop clerk;Thora Hird Ivy Dawking, A Land Army Girl;
Wilkie Cooper; Reporter Camera man Douglas Slocombe
John Dighton, Diana Morgan, Angus MacPhail
From a story by Graham Greene
Of all the propaganda films produced by Britain during the war, no motion picture was as shattering as this fictional yet frighteningly real story of heros, traitors and graphic homeland terror. In the spring of 1942 the quaint rural village of Bramley End (Turville Bucks) is occupied by a German platoon expertly disguised as friendly forces.
In the days that follow the men, women and children of the isolated town must outwit the occupying enemy but also to destroy the Nazi force before the rest of the country finds out.
Apart from the church which features in this film quite heavily there are other buildings in this village which have not changed that much in approx 65 years. The boundary to the church has been increased and the main entrance gates which were made of wood no longer stand these gates were replaced with iron and the gates have a date on them of 1952 one year before the Queens coronation in 1953. The church also featured in another Ealing Studios film that of The Dead Of Night in which George Parratt played by Basil Radford marries his sweetheart Mary Lee played by Peggy Bryan.
Another area of the village which features quite a bit in this film although not quite as heavy as the church is the village pub, this is named as The Ring Of Bells and the licensee above the door is a James Sturry. The building is in fact a Public house and today it is called The Bull And Butcher.
We also see another scene in which there are three characters on a hilltop overlooking the village below although in the scene it is not very well featured and is quite covered by trees and bushes you can in fact just about see the spire of St. Mary's church.
This hilltop is quite an attraction to picnic families or those who enjoy magnificent veiws of the countryside, believe you me on a very fine day the scenery is breathtaking! You will also note the windmill in the background, This windmil was also used in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and features here in Went The Day Well a number of times.
The interior church scenes in the film may have been shot at Ealing Studio's or another interior of a church although there are a number of items which match both the church of today and that of the film there are also a number of small differences which could not be found in our church of today. This of course might mean that in over 65 years some changes to the structure have been made. But it is believed that through some good trickery some of these shots were actually filmed on a set which closely resembled the inside of our church back at Ealing Studio's.
The village of today although there are some differences in 65 years the village has not changed that much and still serves as an excellent location for Tv as well as film production. Programmes such as The Vicar of Dibley, Midsummer Murders, Miss Marple and the Disney creation 101 Dalmations were all shot at Turville.
If you ever want a place to visit by all means go but please respect the peace and privacy of the real people who actually live or work in the village.
Why not visit the Church and give a donation and sign the visitor's book and then after a perfect day stop of at the Bull And The Butcher for a perfect country pub refreshment or even a perfect mouth watering meal while over looking this beautiful village.
I would like to say that my visit to this village was very enjoyable and i thank everyone who either gave their support as well as some very interesting factual information.
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