Local BBC Sites

Page last updated at 14:27 GMT, Sunday, 24 October 2010 15:27 UK
Shirley Anne Field on Saturday Night and Sunday Morning
Shirley Anne Field in 1999
Shirley Anne Field played Doreen in Saturday Night and Sunday Morning

Fifty years ago the film adaptation of Saturday Night and Sunday Morning was released in British cinemas.

Shirley Anne Field starred as Doreen, the girlfriend of Arthur Seaton, who was played by Albert Finney.

The film is still admired for its gritty social realism and the way it confronted abortion and adultery.

Shirley Anne Field said: "We shocked everybody and we excited people. People still come up to me and quote the lines!"

She added: "I absolutely knew it was a ground breaking film, from the moment I read it."

Saturday Night and Sunday Morning was arguably Shirley's big break and she admitted the role "was a gift."

But what does she remember of the source material's author, Nottingham's Alan Sillitoe?

"I knew he was there [on set] and it was a comfort," she said.

"I think he liked what I was doing... We wouldn't do anything if he didn't approve of it.

"He was a very modest man, nothing like Arthur Seaton who I think he based on his brother."

Old Radford

Much of Saturday Night and Sunday Morning was shot around Nottingham.

Off Norton Street, Old Radford
The people of Old Radford were full of excitement during the film's production

Scenes were filmed on Derby Road, at the former Raleigh factory and at the Savoy and ABC Cinemas.

However, director Karel Reisz and his production crew also descended on Old Radford, Nottingham.

Roger Fowkes was just a boy when "the biggest camera he'd ever seen" arrived on Norton Street, near to his home.

"We were just being nosey, hanging around, really," said Roger.

"It wasn't a big event. Nobody knew what was going off. It was just a camera crew doing a film.

"It was the best thing, at the time, that happened to this area."

Roger was filmed walking across the road but did not see the film until he was in his early thirties.

"Until then I didn't even know what I had been in!"

There is nothing on Norton Street to commemorate where one of the UK's finest films was shot.

The rows of terraced houses were demolished over 30 years ago and in their place are a number of non-descript one storey units.

Roger said: "It's a bit of a sadness that they didn't plan it better than this for the people that live here. It's a shame."

BBC Inside Out East Midlands have made a special programme, presented by Billy Ivory, paying tribute to Alan Sillitoe, the author of Saturday Night and Sunday Morning. You can watch the programme on BBC One at 7.30pm on Monday, 25 October 2010.

Preview of Alan Sillitoe tribute

Alan Sillitoe on famous novel
09 Mar 10 |  Arts & Culture
Life and times of Alan Sillitoe
26 Apr 10 |  Arts & Culture



Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2017 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific