Went the Day Well?

Date: 1942
Director: Alberto Cavalcanti
Production Company: Ealing

Stars: Leslie Banks, Mervyn Johns, Thora Hird, Patricia Hayes, Harry Fowler
Location(s): Turville, Buckinghamshire

Region(s):

Storyline:

Nazi invasion of small Buckinghamshire village, and the villagers giving them the cold steel up ’em. Excellent wartime propaganda.

Additional Information:

Photo 021 of the church shows it now without the war memorial seen in the film. I am almost certain that this was a prop for the film and not a real one. In the film one can clearly see the names listed on it and it includes a Major G. Fraser. Mrs Fraser who lives in the manor house in Bramley End in the film is a sixty-something woman who is presumably a widow and it would tie in that her husband, never mentioned, would have probably held such a position in the army. The plaque commemorates ‘the men of this parish who fell’ rather than giving an actual location and that slight vagueness also suggests that it was no more real than the large cross for the German soldiers in the churchyard at the end of the film. Philip Anderton

John Larkin states that Turville was also used in Dead of Night, 1945.

 

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Can you help:

If you have any information regarding this film, any of the stills, or even better, some NOW shots please contact us.


All shot in Turville, Bucks.

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Now.

One could almost stand in one place and photograph in a circle and capture everything.

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Now.

A church, a pub, a village green and that's it.

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The same shot 73 years on without the words. (RL)

Perhaps at one time the manse.

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Now.

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To increase the number of "now" photos. (RL)

Good, solid, English church.

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Now.

The ex-school and library, Turville, Buckinghamshire.

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Now.

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Now.

The pub, renamed for the film.

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It remains as the "Bull & Butcher" today. (RL)

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Now.

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Now.

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John Rhodes provides this shot of the location now. Slightly off angle because the Bull & Butcher has had an extension, they have either used the same door and over canopy or copied the old but the background building remain the same, OK so a chimney is missing! (RL)

The pub is on the right, the white building.

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And, as you see, still is.

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Now.

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Now.

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Now.

The Old Vicarage, Turville Bucks.

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Now.

A barn, Turville, Bucks.

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And today.

A barn, Turville, Bucks.

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Still with an ARP (Air Raid Precaution) WWII sign on the wall! Obviously taking no chances these villagers.

And this is where the mystery starts. The corner on the left is a set, it was never a building in reality.

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And now.

View from Cobstone Hill, over Turville, Buckinghamshire.

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Similar view now.

View from Cobstone Hill, over Turville, Buckinghamshire.

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Similar view now.

Cobstone Hill Mill. This windmill also appeared in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and Dead of Night made in 1945 also made in Turville. John Larkin sent this information in. Thanks John.

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Now.

A view of the village, which doesn't actually show the fake post office, unless it's hidden by the trees on the left.

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Now, trees gone, cars parked where the phantom Post Office was built. Pub on the left.

  • 'Now' required

Photo kindly supplied by Eric Thurman, who confirmed that the Post Office never was! I really must try and get a life! The picture shows the pub, the white building and a timber store office on the right, now demolished.

Corner of Chiltern Way, Turville, Buckinghamshire.

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Now.

The pub, now called the Bull and Butcher.

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Now.

The pub, now called the Bull and Butcher.

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Now.

The memorial has been removed, but two old wooden benches remain.

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Now.

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The set. The Post Office.

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Accepting that the Post Office was a prop John Rhodes took this shot of the view without the obstruction. (RL)

The set, built in front of the pub, taken from the churchyard gates.

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Now, from the churchyard gates towards the pub.

  • 'Now' required

Post card showing Turville, without the "Post Office". Taken from the lane adjacent to the church.

Churchyard of St Mary's, Turville.

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Now.

All much the same angle, but with the Post Office set on left side of wdw025b.

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Now.

All much the same angle, but with the Post Office set on left side of wdw025b.

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Now.

All much the same angle, but with the Post Office set on left side of wdw025b.

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At "much the same angle". (RL)

All much the same angle, but with the Post Office set on left side of wdw025b.

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Now.

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More evidence, kindly supplied by another villager, whose family have lived in the village since 1927. Showing the timber works office on the left, but with no Post Office!

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John Rhodes provides an up to date shot of the same spot now still evidencing no Post Office but it would have been where the Range Rover is parked. (RL)

Probably Ibstone House, on the hill above Turville.

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Chris Makin identifies this as Stanwell Place and sends this 1953 photo stating that the front of the house is to the left in the screen grab. He adds that the troops are approaching the area that later became tennis courts and the apple tree on the left is clearly larger in 1953. As a child, Chris knew the gardens well and found a box of blank ammunition that would have been used in the film. The house, which was a magnet for British film studios throughout the 1950's and 60's was sadly demolished around 1965, the area, now unrecognisable, is now a hideous gravel pit. (RL)

The pub. But the heavy shadow on the bottom right suggests a building??.the Post Office again.

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Now. Well, what an adventure, and what a wonderful set of pics. Heartiest congratulations and hugest thanks to Geff Barrett for his sleuthing. And, obviously the Day Went Very Well Indeed.