Airing of Lowe documentary


Dec 12, 1999
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The documentary about Lowe made for Welsh TV is to be aired on S4C at 8:45 p.m., New Year's Eve.

If I'm repeating old news, then smack me with a trout.
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Inger Sheil

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Feb 9, 1999
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LoL! Would you believe I haven't seen it yet? I last spoke to the writer sometime before it aired, and was rather remiss in passing on my new snail mail address...looks like a phone call is owed.

This has been some time in the making - Kerri and I were first contacted a couple of years back regarding background on Lowe, and originally it was to include an interview with Harold Lowe's son, Harold WG Lowe. After he passed away, other members of the family stepped up to the plate. I had a chat with one of them the week ITV was filming background with the family in Wales, before they did Ioan Gruffudd's scenes.

I didn't see the final version of the script, but earlier drafts we were given for input drew heavily on inquiry testimony and witness material such as the Cameron and Walcroft letters and the Harris interview. Dinah and Ted Dowding (Clear Cameron's nephew) and Dave Bryceson were also asked to provide feedback, as was Harold W G Lowe at the earliest stages. I provided my own interpretative comments as well as factual material.

I'll be very interested in seeing how the final version came out as filmed.
 
Mar 20, 2000
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All,

I too will be waiting impatiently to see this. Is there any word of its being aired on US TV? If not, I assume it will eventually be on VHS/DVD.

Inger,

Are you interviewed in this or was the one you did for BBC?

Randy
 

Inger Sheil

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G'day Randy -

The BBC interview I did was for the Roy Noble progamme - live to air radio for BBC Wales (I'm gradually working my way around the regional BBC radio programmes - a while back I was interviewed for the BBC in Yorkshire regarding Moody)!

The doco went through some budget cuts as it went along - it was originally conceived in 1998 during the wave of interest following the release of the Cameron movie. Although the initial proposal was for a half-hour Welsh language programme, such was the interest that full hour Welsh and English versions were soon in the works (working title was 'The Welshman Who Went Back'). At this stage Harold WG Lowe was going to fly over from Western Australia, and we were planning to meet up with him and hopefully get to Cardiff to talk to the writer/producer. The project was later scaled down, although there was filming on location in Barmouth (a gorgeous backdrop - Lowe's childhood home is in one of the most beautiful locations in Wales).

Unfortunately, Harold became ill at the end of 1998 and passed away early in 1999. We did travel through Wales with his son and daughter-in-law who both shared our keen desire to investigate the Lowe family heritage and were the most engaging company imaginable, but it will always be a profound regret to me that I never had the chance to meet Harold face to face. He was a wonderful correspondent who had lived an absolutely fascinating life, an accomplished writer, poet, inventor and traveller who could charm me effortlessly into dropping the cold professional facade - although he was utterly convinced that with a name like 'Inger' and a sixth generation Australian I very properly should have been a blonde.

Before he died, we were contacted by his family and asked if we would contribute questions as a framework for a taped interview with recollections of his father. With his son doing the interview and his grandson doing the camera work, our questions were put to Harold. It was terribly poignant to watch as Harold was obviously very ill, but at the same time his strong, indominatable personality was as evident as it had been in our previous correspondence and phone conversations.

I spoke to him only once more. After a relapse that put him back in hospital, I recieved a phone call one night that his son had helped him place. Two days later he passed away. The taped interview is still somewhat difficult for me to watch, although Harold's wit and warmth are so evident, as is his high regard for his father.

However, I'm pleased to note that the HTV documentary will be including some of this previously unseen footage of the Harold W G Lowe interview in the documentary (I'm not sure how much of it, though).

I'll give the producer/writer a call and see if I can find out anything more about release in the US.

And speaking of interviews, Randy m'dear, I tried to phone you last night but you weren't in (perfectly reasonable I suppose as it would have been 1.30 pm for you at the time I called!). Your London agent has to report in on one of the research tasks you set the 'East End Branch'!

~ Ing
 

Charmaine Sia

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Nov 25, 2001
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I would love to see it, but unfortunately I think the chance of it being screened in Singapore is about the same as the chance of me meeting one of you. Perhaps I might convince my father to subscribe to a newsstation that gets international channels, however.

Charmaine
 

Pat Winship

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May 14, 1999
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Hi, All!

For the folks on the western side of the pond-- would any of the UK people be willing to tape it and share a copy. I realize that your standard video system is different from ours, but it is possible to have tapes converted from one to the other.

Pat W
 
J

Jemma Hyder

Guest
Patricia,

I think SC4 is regional television so not all us brits will get it, unfortunately it's not local to me I think thats Welsh Tv but Im not sure, it would make sense. Sorry couldn't be of more help

Cheers

Jemma
 

Inger Sheil

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G'day Pat -

I'll see what can be done and will contact you privately. I've been a bit slack in following this up (too flat out lately) and haven't yet got in contact again with the writer/producer again (I last spoke to her a few months ago and was supposed to pass on my contact details - one of the drawbacks of this 'rootless existance' is a very fluid address and phone #). Did hear over Christmas from one of the Lowes interviewed for the programme who has been given an advanced copy - they seemed quite pleased with the end result.

~ Ing
 

Kyrila Scully

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Apr 15, 2001
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Mike and Inger,

I almost bought the magazine you linked, but it wouldn't be fair to Inger. Besides, I don't speak Welsh and I just spent $60 on a lifeboat model. Not to mention all the other items I bought on Ebay this week. (I've just got to stop going there!) However, if you DO get it, could you send me an English translation of the story? I'd love to read it. It sounds fascinating. (And what a cutie Ioan is!)

BTW, if anyone is inclined to donate items to my collection, I am in need of second and third class china. LOL!!!

All the best,
Kyrila
 

Kyrila Scully

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Apr 15, 2001
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I just went through the thread here after my last post. I don't know why I never received these before. Inger, this is fascinating about Harold W.G. Lowe and the production. I too would be interested in a video and am willing to contribute cash money for the trouble. Your poignant anecdote about Harold's last days were so touching, I truly wanted to cry with you. Please continue to contribute to this thread as new information about the film is available.

All the best,
Kyrila
 

Inger Sheil

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Feb 9, 1999
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Mike - ta very much for that! I'm of two minds about it...rather tempted to go for it, but I imagine it will be in a similar vein to much of the promotion material for the doco that has already been sent to me. Very broad material to serve as an intro to those not familiar with Lowe and his role in the disaster...ah, t'hell with it...I'll put a bid in. Ioan Gruffudd has a healthy regard for the man he portrayed, and I know he was looking forward to meeting Harold W G Lowe for the projected interview that never took place (he also gets a few brownie points for being one of the few who spell my name correctly).

Kyrila, I tried to contact the show's producer last week, but she's on holiday so I've left a message on her voice mail. I'll ask her if she has any more information about the proposed release of the English language version of the tape. Joanne Davies is an extraordinarily talented woman, who also does a lot of work in English/Welsh translations. I also had a note from one of Lowe's grandsons, who is interviewed in the doco, just before Christmas - he was quite pleased with the end result.

~ Inger
 

Kyrila Scully

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Apr 15, 2001
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Congrats, Inger! I just saw what appears to be your nickname on the auction. Glad the magazine is in your worthy hands! Thanks for inquiring about the video for us on the other side of the pond. Assure the producer that there's quite a few of us who would be interested as I'm sure there are. Maybe she can get it shown on PBS?

All the best (and enjoy your new magazine!)

Kyrila
(aka on Ebay as childstar413)
 

Inger Sheil

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Feb 9, 1999
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Ta for letting me take it, Kyrila! Would you like a copy? I can round it up with some other bits and bobs that have been sent to me from Wales which might interest you - just drop me a private email. I'll let you know what's happening with the release as soon as I find out.

~ Ing
 

Inger Sheil

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Feb 9, 1999
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Spoke to the producer today - feedback for the programme is excellent, with phone calls and letters from people telling her how much they enjoyed the it. She's very happy with its reception.

HTV is now trying to get one of the English networks to take up the documentary, and possibly get it aired in the US as well. I suggest that if our friends in England and Stateside want to see a widespread distribution of the programme, they write to the networks promoting the idea (will see if I can dig up some contact addresses later).

The producer tells me that the slightly Welsh nationalist note on which the programme ended might have been off-putting for the English, although this shouldn't be too much of a problem in today's political climate (if they can air a critical telemovie on the events of Bloody Sunday, a show about an Anglo-Welsh seaman shouldn't be too much of an issue). I wonder if they might have been grappling with the fact that the original production was in the Welsh language?

I'm sure there are enough folks in America who think Ioan Gruffudd is reason enough to try and get this show aired in the States...

(Kyrila - have noticed a few more articles featuring interviews with Gruffudd about the doco are up on ebay!).

~ Ing
 

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