London Community Video Archive

A programme of community video screenings in collaboration with London Community Video Archive (LCVA) and extending the work of Ed Webb Ingall’s Communal Knowledge project People Make Videos

Screenings will take place with Penfold Community Hub, The West London Day Centre, King Solomon Academy, Cinenova, Justice for Domestic Workers and more to be announced.

The videos are part of the newly established London Community Video Archive (LCVA), which was set up to preserve and share videos made by community groups in London between 1969 and 1985.

When they were first produced and screened the videos made a major difference to many communities, highlighting injustices and untold stories on issues ranging from housing, race, gender, ageing, local activism, sex and sexuality, as well focusing on specific areas of London.

Portable video recording – now a technology routinely embodied in smartphones - became available for the very first time back in the early 1970s, making it possible for individuals and communities to make their own television. The medium was taken up by people ignored or under-represented in the mainstream media – tenants on housing estates, community action groups, women, black and minority ethnic groups, youth, gay and lesbian people, and the disabled. With an overriding commitment to social empowerment and to combating exclusion, ‘Community Video’ dealt with issues which still have a contemporary resonance – housing, play-space, discrimination, youth arts.

This rich heritage is now under threat of disappearing, both because of the physical decay and disintegration of half-inch reel-to reel-tape, and the ageing memories of the original ‘Community Video’ practitioners.

LCVA will archive, recover and revive this history so that it can be used as a resource for contemporary debates and activism.

LCVA is kindly supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and Goldsmiths University London. It is a member of London’s Screen Archives Network, managed by Film London.


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