Steelchest, Nail in the Boot and the Barking Dog

Steelchest, Nail in the Boot and the Barking Dog

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12 February 1987 (first transmission)


51min 32sec







National Film and Television Archive


Flying Fox Films, RTE

Rights Holder

Flying Fox Films, RTE

It is illegal to download, copy, print or otherwise utilise in any other form this material, without written consent from the copyright holder.


Documentary telling the story of the Belfast shipyard, Harland and Wolff, as told in story and song by those who make their living there.

Produced and directed by David Hammond, it chronicles the stories of the men who helped to build some of the most famous ships in the world.

Mr Hammond's daughter, Catherine Gifford, worked as a production assistant on the film. "We were supposed to start filming on 12 April, the anniversary of the Titanic leaving Ireland, which was a big coincidence," she said. "So we postponed things just in case something went wrong [...] The management were wary of us at first. Work was drying up at that time and there wasn't a lot of good news to be told. The men were a bit wary of us too, but David had a way of getting information out of people."

The film's unusual title was derived from the nicknames of some of the men, who worked at the shipyard. Catherine added: "There were a lot of Billys and Sammys, so they all had nicknames so everyone would know which Billy or Sammy they were talking about."


Camera – David Barker; Assistant – Conor Hammond; Sound – Deke Thompson; Dubbing – Tony McHugh; Music John Anderson; Commentary – Damian Gorman; Production Team – Bernie Morrison, Catherine Hammond; Editing – Mathilde Blum; Assistant – Michael Quinn; Producer and Director – David Hammond. A Flying Fox Films Production for Channel 4 in association with Radio Telefis Eireann.



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