Flying the Foam and Some Fancy Diving
R: James Williamson. D: ‘Professor’ Reddish. P: Williamson Kinematograph Company. UK 1906
Locations: Palace Pier, Brighton, East Sussex, England, UK
Print: BFI National Archive
“Self-styled pier entertainer ‘Professor’ Reddish was a specialist in the ‘flying the foam’ stunt, which involved mounting a bicycle and riding it down a steep ramp and then off the end of Brighton’s West Pier into the sea.
To this, James Williamson adds additional layers of entertainment, firstly by showing the stunt from multiple angles (or rather several stunts, as the surrounding crowds differ from shot to shot) and then by showing it in reverse motion so that Reddish appears to be performing the impossible feat of riding his bicycle vertically out of the sea. Similar treatment is then given to more conventional footage of pier divers.”