This Working Life: Steel

Rare documentaries, animations and short films focusing on the nation’s steel industry.

Following our box sets covering the history of Britain’s coalmining and shipbuilding industries, we turn our focus on the nation’s steel industry.

Steel provides the backbone of Britain’s industry and society. It was a driving force behind the Second Industrial Revolution and shaped many regions of the UK. In its heyday over 450,000 people were working in the steel industry and while much of the employment it generated is now gone, its influence still lives on, as was spectacularly illustrated in Danny Boyle’s opening ceremony for the 2012 Olympics.

This comprehensive double DVD set features 23 rare documentaries, animations and short films which span the twentieth century. Highlights include footage of the building of the New Tyne bridge in 1928 and the rare 1945 film Steel which was shot by award-winning cameraman Jack Cardiff.

Disc one

  • Parkgate Iron and Steel Co., Rotherham (1901)
  • His Majesty’s Visit to the Clyde (1917)
  • The Building of the New Tyne Bridge (1928)
  • Steel (Civics and Commerce series) (1933)
  • Mastery of Steel (1933)
  • British Steel (1939)
  • Teeth of Steel (1942)
  • Steel (1945)
  • The Ten Year Plan (1945)
  • Common Sense about Steel
  • Mrs Worth Goes to Westminster (1949)
  • Steel in South Wales (1950)

Disc two

  • River of Steel (1951)
  • Ingot Pictorial No 27 (1956)
  • Steel Town (1958)
  • Men of Consett (1959)
  • The Big Mill (1963)
  • Steel for the Seventies (1970)
  • Women of Steel (1984)
  • Northern Newsreel No 7 (extract — Consett item) (1987)

Special features

  • Fully illustrated booklet with new essays and notes on all of the films.

Product information

    • Certificate


    • Colour

      Colour and Black/white

    • Sound

      Sound and Silent

    • Running time


    • DVD region

      • 2 Europe (except Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus), Middle East, Egypt, Japan, South Africa, Swaziland, Lesotho, Greenland, French Overseas departments and territories

    • Catalogue number


BFI Shop

DVDs and Blu Ray

Back to the top

See something different

Subscribe now for exclusive offers and the best of cinema.