BARNACLE BILL

GB
1957
1hr 27mins
Dir: Charles Frend
Starring: Alec Guinness and Irene Browne

An unsuccessful Royal Navy captain takes command of a seaside pier

This Ealing comedy features Hunstanton Pier in Norfolk and in some scenes a working narrow gauge 4-4-0 steam loco complete with open seated stock can be seen on basic narrow-gauge track. There were three other Barnacle Bill films before this, in 1930, 1935 and 1941, but this is thought to be the only one to feature anything to do with trains. Oh, and please remember that Hunstanton is pronounced Hunston.

Alec Guinness proceeds onto the pier at Hunstanton and passes the end of the narrow-gauge pleasure track
Percy Herbert (standing) and Alec Guinness admire the little loco, off track and separated from its tender
This lovely view sees the loco framed by the ornate ironwork of the pier. The little 4-4-0 steam loco is broadly based on an LMS Compound and was built by the famed model maker Bassett-Lowke. It is apparently still extant in private ownership.
The shots of the loco in action even extend to this very unusual drivers eye view!
As the local councillors arrive they look on rather disdainfully at the sight and smell of the engine
The little Bassett-Lowke 4-4-0 battles hard against the wind and a heavy train
The driver attends to some minor issue in this final shot, which gives us an equally unusual glimpse of the loco from the rear. The pier and all its attractions has now gone.