The German who came for tea - memories of 101-year-old Annie wins Cumbria's best short film

The Westmorland Gazette: Annie Day's memories feature in the award-winning The German Who Came For Tea Annie Day's memories feature in the award-winning The German Who Came For Tea

LOCAL film makers have scooped accolades in a new competition celebrating short film-making in Cumbria.

Judged by screen great Alan Rickman and comedienne Victoria Wood, the first ever Cumbria Short Film competition was organised by The Old Laundry Theatre at Bowness.

The grand finale saw a special screening and prize-giving.

Sponsored by Lakeland Ltd and hosted by Alastair Goolden from the Bath Film Festival, the judging panel also included Old Laundry trustee.

The shortlist of 12 films were all set in Cumbria or made by people living or working in the area.

The shortlist was whittled down from almost 40 entries.

Barrow-based Signal Film & Media, collected the ‘best film’ award and prize money for The German Who Came To Tea.

It was made as part of a heritage project collecting the memories of Barrow residents.

It studied Annie Day, who turned 100 last year, and how 70 years ago, her young son Brian, brought a German prisoner of war for Christmas dinner - marking the start of an enduring lesson in love, loss and acceptance.

Signal Films director Kerry Kolbe said: “It was an honour and really exciting to be part of this new festival, and even better to win a prize! I'm certain the star of the film, Annie Day, will be pleased to hear it has done so well too.

"The film is about her story, conveying a really hopeful and uplifting message even though it's one that's tinged with sadness.”

The short film ‘Granny Beryl’ by Rob Luke was runner up in the same category.

Highly commended awards were given for ‘One Last Walk’ by Emma Rydal and ‘Sketch’ by Tracey Walker.

Talented young film maker Bronny Salter also collected a special ‘Best Animation’ award for her film ‘Beauty’.

Other winning films included the sci-fi ‘Terraform’ by Giuseppe Abbà which took the award for ‘Best Film’ in the Under 18 category.

Matthew Edwards collected the runner-up prize for his film ‘Animals’.

Judge Alastair Goolden said: "The launch of the competition this year has exceeded our expectations and attracted a rich, broad mixture of film styles and genres from a variety of film-makers of widely differing ages and backgrounds.

“It has been a pleasure to view the submitted films, to meet some of the people behind the winning entries and to witness the enthusiasm of the viewing audience at the Old Laundry screening.”

The 2014 competition will be launched early next year and film makers are encouraged to start work on their entries which have to be in by November 1 2014.

To view a trailer for the winning film here: http://www.signalfilmandmedia.co.uk/project/german-who-came-to-tea/ All films can be viewed on www.facebook.com/CumbriaShortFilm

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