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Sean Connery describes the persistent problems between management and workers while riding a bicycle round the empty Harland & Wolff plating shed in Govan. (clip - full length available onsite)

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Sean Connery’s sense of humour comes through in the closing sequence of the programme. (clip - full length available onsite)

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  • Glasgow


  • Construction and engineering
  • Emotions, attitudes and behaviour
  • Employment, industry and industrial relations
  • Politics
  • Ships and shipping


  • 1960s

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Reference number: T0584

Date: 1967, July

Director: d. Sean Connery

Producer: Bryan Izzard

Production company: Joint production STV and Sean Connery Productions

Sound: sound

Original format: 16mm

Colour: bw

Fiction: non-fiction

Running time: 47.40 mins

Description: A documentary, narrated and directed by Sean Connery, on the turbulent industrial relations of the workforce of Fairfield's shipyard on the Clyde during the mid 1960s.

This film is available to purchase as part of a two-disc DVD 'Tales From the Shipyard' from the British Film Institute - for further information see [last accessed 1/2/2011]

Credits: researched and w. Cliff Hanley
cam. Bill Scott, Mario Ford
sd. Len Southam
ed. Leonard Trumm
p. Bryan Izzard

Shotlist: No opening credits. Shots of crowds invading pitch after Rangers v Celtic match at Hampden Park; one player is carrying a cup (0.35); Sean Connery drives over the border into Scotland (1.25); He travels through Glasgow on a Corporation Bus, passing through Govan en route to Fairfield's Yard; brief shot passing Lyceum (2.57); Shots of the workers entering Fairfields, with title The Bowler and the Bunnet superimposed over the picture (3.03); Pan over rooftops of Govan and Fairfield's (3.27); Four workers standing outside the yard (3.54); Shots of portrait and statue of Sir William Pearce (4.30); Exterior of the Pearce Institute, prior to becoming a library (4.40); Still of statues' dedication; shot of crowds around statue of Pearce (5.30); General shots of Govan shipyards (6.00); stills depicting the launch of various unidentified ships on the Clyde (6.21); Shots of crowds protesting outside shipyards (6.33); Shots of Govan tenements and backyards (7.12); An old churchyard in Govan (7.22); Sean Connery cycles through an old shed in the Harland and Wolff shipyard (9.03); Ghostly figures play football in the shed (9.53); A man impersonating Fyffe Robertson comments on Clyde shipbuilding (10.51); Shot of unknown ship being towed up the Clyde (11.18); Shot of Evening Citizen's headlines on Thursday, 4th November 1965, reading "£1,ooo,ooo Loan to save Fairfield's" (11.21); Shot of Jim Callaghan (Chancellor of the Exchequer) sitting at a desk (11.26); Sir Iain Stuart playing golf (12.14); Print of the old Fairfield Board of Directors (12.20); Connery in Fairfield's boardroom (12.28); Sir Iain Stuart in his office (12.31); Shot of a union official addressing the workers (12.56); George Brown and an unidentified man leaving Downing Street? (13.01); Headlines of "Evening Citizen", Thursday 9th December 1965, reading "Fairfields Plan Hits a Snag" (13.06); Union official addresses workers (13.40); Sir Iain Stuart in his office (13.47); Shot of Lord Thompson (13.50); George Brown leaves Downing Street (13.54); Exterior of the Lyceum Cinema (14.13); Sir Iain addresses the workers before they vote on his proposals (15.56); General shots of Fairfield's Yard with interviews with the new management (18.09); Shots of the Gotaverken Yard in Sweden (19.16); General shots of a Japanese yard and the launching of the "Leonicas Z. Cambanis" (20.15); End of Part One - Blank - (20.37); Two men lift up a large valve with "Part Two" chalked upon it (20.42); Sean Connery talks about Fairfield's (20.54); Shop stewards discuss problems in their new office, including Jim Airlie, George Gray, Douglas MacClemance, Charlie Mitchell and Alec MacGuinness (23.42); Brief shot of the workers in the yard (23.47); Jim Houston, the manager, explains the new techniques (27.00); Sean Connery explains the new ways of saving money (28.08); General shots inside the sheds (28.44); Sean Connery looking at more savings in the yard (28.52); General shots inside the joinery shop (30.11); Apprentices at their keep-fit classes (31.15); Apprentices of various trades working and learning (31.46); A football match between the workers with Sean Connery in goal (32.47); foremen attending a lesson; shot old projector (33.13); Shop stewards on a course for new techniques in ship building in the South of England (34.09); Oliver Blandford being interviewed (34.28); Shots of the boilermakers apprentices voting to strike (35.39); General shots of the yard (35.53); Sean Connery and an unidentified man discuss the problems of job evaluation (41.10); Connery walks through a partly built ship (43.15); Shots from a crane of the ship under construction (43.50); Various shots of workers and ships in the yard, including "Atlantic City" (45.53); The "Atlantic City" is towed down the River Clyde (47.40)