Heritage WeekendA collage of some of the archival films shown at FirstsiteCFMC’s 2017-18 film making season has got off to a cracking start with ten very different themed entries in the Open competition, the highest number in any club competition in recent memory.

This outpouring of creativity followed a busy summer when members undertook making their own films as well as joining in several club projects, including a documentary about John Constable’s Flatford Mill. Then there was a challenging project – working title, “The Misadventures of a Tennis Ball”. But more about that in a later news item.

Members were also called upon to be both actors and camera operators during the filming of an off-the-wall comedy, called Airplane Two, which has been more than a year in the production.

The club’s popular summer outing to Highwoods Country Park was well supported by members and their partners: it was the location for last summer’s club project, “The Swarm”.

A small team of cameramen also visited Marks Hall Gardens and Arboretum to film the biennial exhibition of some 300 sculptures by national and international sculptors.

Another out-of-season activity was the club’s participation in National Heritage Weekend. Peter Noakes had put together a 105-minute programme of archival films screened at Firstsite Art Gallery.

large groupPictured (left to right) are Henryk "Hen-the-Pen" Jachimczyk, Cllr Gerard Oxford, CFMC Chairman Barrie Gibbard, John Howden, John Groslin, Andy Merz, John "JJ" Jones and Bryan Littlewood.Club member Suzie Hart was on hand with her camera to capture the magic of the evening when CFMC staged its End of Season Showcase at Firstsite on May 16.

The winner of the coveted Film of the Year Boudicca was John Groslin with his stunning documentary “Monet’s Giverny”, which he filmed entirely on a tablet. It was also his first club competition entry.

John was presented with his trophy by Cllr Gerard Oxford, Mayor-elect of Colchester.

The Film Maker of the Year Boudicca went to Andy Merz, who has been a prolific film maker during the season. Club chairman, Barrie Gifford also presented Bryan Littlewood and Henryk Jachimczyk jointly with the Chairman’s Cup Boudicca.

There was an abundance of trophies for film maker John Howden, who won the Open, Five Minute, Ray Jennings and Holiday competitions.

John “JJ” Jones was awarded a surprise Boudicca for his “Outstanding Contribution” to CFMC over many years. “JJ” joined the club in the 1980s and has held various positions besides being an award- winning film maker and an experienced projectionist.

The evening, which attracted a host of VIPs as well as members of the public, was voted a huge success with much praise going to the MC, Henryk “Hen-the-Pen” Jachimczyk, for his humorous and engaging presentation.

Heritage WeekendWe are providing films from the CFMC archive to be shown in the Firstsite Auditorium on Saturday 9th September as part as the events associated with the Colchester Heritage Open Day. Further details of the programme and timing can be found on the Firstsite website at

Our first meeting of the new season will take place on Tuesday 12th September at our normal meeting venue at the Hythe Community Centre starting at 7.45 for 8.00pm.