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Topical Budget 228-1: Horses' New Years' Dinner (1916)

British Film Institute

Main image of Topical Budget 228-1: Horses' New Years' Dinner  (1916)
35mm, black and white, 73 feet
Production CompanyTopical Film Company

Horses at the Home of Rest for Horses, including Marlborough, the old charger of the late Lord Wolseley, enjoy their New Year's Day food.

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This newsreel saw Topical Budget returning to the famous Cricklewood Home of Rest for Horses, previously seen in Horses' New Year's Feast (Topical Budget 71-2, 1913).

Although very similar in content, the treatment is more sophisticated, with a greater variety of shots and a more personalised approach thanks to the decision to highlight an individual horse with a very famous owner: Marlborough, the charger of the recently deceased Lord Wolseley.

A great Victorian military hero, Sir Garnet Wolseley (1833-1913) played a major role in every British campaign between the Crimea in the 1850s and the Boer War at the turn of the twentieth century. Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli called him "our only General", and his public image was as the very embodiment of the values of the British Empire. He was also the author of 'The Life of John Churchill, Duke of Marlborough, to the Accession of Queen Anne' (1894), from whom his horse's name was derived.

Though the Cricklewood Home had originally been established for working cab horses, it would also care for military horses, and during World War I it even established a specialist ambulance service to evacuate wounded horses from the front in France. The Home's commitment to the care of military horses continues to the present day, three famous recent residents being Sefton, Echo and Yeti, police and army horses badly wounded by the IRA's 1982 Hyde Park bomb.

Michael Brooke

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Video Clips
Complete film (0:56)
Topical Budget 228-1: City Men in Training (1916)
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Topical Budget 228-1: Shower Baths in the Trenches (1916)
Topical Budget 228-1: Torpedoing a Liner (1916)
Topical Budget 238-1: Motor Ambulances for Horses (1916)
Topical Budget 71-2: Horses' New Year's Feast (1913)