THE MAN IN THE WHITE SUIT

GB
1951
1hr 25mins
Dir: Alexander Mackendrick
Starring: Alec Guinness and Vida Hope

A scientist develops an impervious suit that cannot be destroyed or get dirty

Based on a play by Roger MacDougall, this science-fiction comic satire made by Ealing Studios has become something of a classic and features a good sequence near the end that was filmed at Brimsdown station near Enfield, on the Lea Valley line in Essex. The station plays the part of the fictional ‘Wellsborough’ and an ex-LNER 4-6-0 is in the platform in one scene. This sequence includes an additional shot of a ‘Royal Scot’ 4-6-0 passing over a level crossing at night, a ‘stock-shot’ that later appeared in the 1955 film The Gold Express. Meanwhile, the opening scene features a panoramic view of a foundry with at least five small industrial saddle tank locos visible along with some open wagons. It is not known where this was filmed but the shot reappeared in the 1959 film I’m All Right Jack (qv). The viaduct that dominates the surrounding town in one of the street scenes is in Burnley, Lancashire.

This image of a foundry later reappeared in I’m All Right Jack (1959). Its origin is not known. There is plenty of steam traction on view and one wagon in the foreground is marked NE (‘North Eastern’).
This is Ashfield Road in Burnley with the railway viaduct (Burnley Viaduct) dominating the scene. It still does today, unlike the mill tower which has gone.
An ex-LNER 4-6-0 stands simmering beneath the lattice footbridge at Brimsdown station in Essex. Without being able to read its numberplate one cannot confirm its identity for sure but it is probably a Class B1.
This is a more expansive view of Brimsdown station. The footbridge upon which Alec Guinness is standing has been removed.
This ‘stock-shot’ shows what appears to be a regimental ‘Royal Scot’ passing over a level crossing, a ‘stock-shot’ that would later reappear in the 1955 film The Gold Express.