Open City Documentary Festival

7 – 13 September 2022
in London

A Story, a Battle and An Excuse: Presented by The London Community Video Archive

Location Genesis Cinema, Date Event has passed

Three films from the 1970s that tell the stories of local communities in Notting Hill, Kentish Town and Beckford, who advocate for new play sites by campaigning and protesting. The Amazing Story of Talacre (1974) produced by Inter-action, features Kentish Town locals fighting against Camden council. Their aim is to clear an empty site in their neighbourhood and create a safe play site, where artistic events can stimulate community activity. The Battle for Powis Square (1973) shows Notting Hill residents pressuring the council to revamp the overgrown and underused gardens, which could easily serve as play sites. Again, the locals voice their anger and disappointment with the lack of action shown by the council. The screening will end with All You Need’s an Excuse (1972) by Liberation Films, which features the story of Beckford residents campaigning for a new playground, where children can safely spend their free time while adults socialize. This 10-minute film represents the need for these areas to not only benefit the children, but also older members of the community, who lack opportunities to make new friends and interact with one another.

These films show the perspective of local communities taking matters into their own hands and their interest in their surroundings, with the expectation to be heard and understood. No matter the time or place, these themes continue to resonate.

Organised by Victoria Gogolinski, BA Film and Screen Studies at London College of Communication

In partnership with LCVA

Followed by a conversation between Agnieszka Rolkiewicz, Ed Webb-Ingall and Henrietta Williams

Agnieszka Rolkiewicz
 is the Founder and Director of Red Roots Incubator.

Ed Webb-Ingall is a filmmaker and researcher working with archival materials and methodologies drawn from community video. He collaborates with groups to explore under-represented historical moments and their relationship to contemporary life, developing modes of self-representation specific to the subject or the experiences of the participants.

Henrietta Williams is an artist and urban researcher. Her practice explores urbanist theories; particularly considering ideas around fortress urbanism, security, and surveillance. She is a Lecturer (teaching) at the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL, and tutors across a number of programs with a particular focus on critical film making methodologies.