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28 October 2014

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A Canterbury Tale

You are in: Kent > Features > A Canterbury Tale > A Canterbury Tale screening

Canterbury Cathedral in the sunset

Canterbury Cathedral in the sunset

A Canterbury Tale screening

BBC South East will be showing the iconic 1944 Powell and Pressburger film A Canterbury Tale in the nave of Canterbury Cathedral on the 19th September.

Save Canterbury Cathedral

The £50 million Appeal was launched in October 2006 to raise funds for a number of major conservation and development projects. Extensive and costly work is needed to conserve the Cathedral's stonemasonry, stained glass windows and lead roof.

A Canterbury Tale (1944) is a reworking of Chaucer’s epic 14th century tale. Set in wartime Kent and filmed on location in the historic city, the groundbreaking film focuses on an American army sergeant, a British soldier and a land girl who solve a bizarre mystery of a stranger who pours glue over village girl's hair, before completing their individual pilgrimages to the Cathedral.

Michael Powell, who wrote, produced and directed the film, was from Bekesbourne, near Canterbury and was educated at Kings School until he was 13.  Powell insisted on finding locations in and around Canterbury, fulfilling an ambition to create a film in the places he had known intimately in his boyhood and the Cathedral very obviously features as a main character.

Powell’s widow Thelma Schoonmaker, an Oscar winning film editor who has guest lectured at Canterbury Christ Church University, is set to take part in the screening and it is expected the film’s female lead Sheila Sim, now Lady Attenborough, will also be joining the event.

Geoff Clark and Beverley Thompson

Geoff Clark and Beverley Thompson

Also on the day BBC South East Today Presenters Geoff Clark and Beverley Thompson will be bringing you the evening programme live from the Cathedral in a special outside broadcast from 6.30pm.

David Innes, Chief Executive of the Save Canterbury Cathedral Appeal welcomed the venture with BBC South East: “We are delighted to be able to host the screening of the film as part of the Save Canterbury Cathedral campaign. The film demonstrates the enduring appeal of the Cathedral as one of our country’s most important heritage sites and highlights the importance of the Appeal in preserving this building for future generations to enjoy. There can be no better place to host the evening than in the building that inspired this original film."

last updated: 14/09/07

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