Bloomsbury Bunker Yields ‘Forgotten’ Film Footage

Wanna see a youthful Yasser Arafat sans headscarf? Gerald Ford tumbling down some aircraft steps? Or how about Saddam Hussein touring a French nuclear facility? A ‘treasure trove’ of such news footage from the 1960s and ’70s will soon be released to the web after laying unseen beneath Bloomsbury for decades.

The film, originally shot by US news company United Press International Television News, had been locked inside General Eisenhower’s D-Day command bunker located on Chenies Street, east of Tottenham Court Road. Associated Press acquired the archive in the late ’90s, but did little with it thanks to poor cataloging. Now, after carefully assembling an index to the 3,500 hours of footage spread over 20,000 cans of film, AP are releasing remastered tapes to professional producers, as well as providing digital versions online.

Here’s a taster, courtesy of the Telegraph:

Mouthwatering stuff. And maybe, just maybe, the liberation of the bunker’s contents will mean the facility might open up to interested visitors once in a while. We’ve always wanted to follow in Onionbagblog’s footsteps and tour a deep level shelter.

Image by bishib70 under a creative commons license.

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