Super 8 Stories: Teaching in Zambia







17 October 2004 (first transmission)


07min 46sec




Super 8





BBC NI, Doubleband Films, Patrick Murphy

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Doubleband Films, Patrick Murphy

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Patrick and Anne Murphy share their experience of leaving behind all they knew in Northern Ireland to go out and work as teachers in Zambia during the 1970s, shortly after their marriage. They are joined by their daughter, Eileen (who was born while they were out there), and their footage shows them working at the rural African school as well as showing off a wealth of wildlife and their ultimate return to Northern Ireland. This clip appeared in Series 2, Programme 3 of Super 8 Stories.


In the 1970s Patrick Murphy had only recently qualified as a primary school teacher and had just got married when he decided to take up a three year teaching contract in Zambia before returning home to settle down. He took up Super 8 film making with his Canon Super 8 auto zoom S18, “to enable me to keep a record of my experiences during my time abroad for my own benefit and to share with family and friends upon my return home”. The films were obviously watched by many people Patrick knew upon his return, eager to share in his experience and he can also recall, “being asked to show them to several other young people who were intending to spend time in Zambia”. Patrick continued with his Super 8 hobby when he settled back down to life in Northern Ireland: “I used Super 8 for about 15 years and have been using various types of video cameras since. I transferred all my old Super 8 material to video for ease of access. I still watch them maybe two or three times a year – and I still have a working projector, screen etc.” Patrick is in no doubt about what his films mean to him today. “I feel that they are treasures. I have records of my family growing up in the 1970s and 80s (recorded meticulously at Xmas and birthdays). Holidays in the UK and Europe. School life in the 1970s. Weddings and special occasions – if the house went on fire they’d be the first items I’d seek to rescue”.

Shot List

Views from a travelling car in Zambia, scenes of wildlife and shots of African children. Exterior scenes of tribal dancing in costumes. Driving shots and views of children going to school. Children sitting in classroom. Children in swimming pool and playing football. Baby in bath and with parents outside. African children pushing pram and playing with the baby. Various wildlife shots of elephants, a rhino, a zebra etc. Cruise on lake. Back home in Ireland - child with ball in street. Fire engines in Belfast dealing with events during the Troubles. Various farm scenes including man driving tractor.


Narrator - Maire Jones; Camera - Michael Quinn; Sound - David Kilpatrick, Kevin McCarthy; Music Consultants - Jim Meredith, Ralph McLean; Production Accountant - Anne Hegarty; Production Assistant - Tammy Moore; Dubbing - One Zero Zero; Online Editor - Alan Perry; Researcher - Ronan Feely; Archivist - Evan Marshall; Assistant Producer - Jenny Waugh; Executive Producers - Deirdre Devlin, Michael Hewitt; Editor - Greg Darby; Producer - Diarmuid Lavery; Director - Brian Henry Martin



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