NCB Film – The 4 Ms

Film ID:

YFA 2617



Visitor Tabs

The National Coal Board (NCB) Film Unit is one of Britain’s most substantial and long-lasting industrial film units. The following is an informative film in which N.C.B Chairman, Lord Robens, discusses the 4 M’s in coal mining: money, markets, men, materials and machinery.

Title – M M M M The 4 M’s

The Chairman of the National Coal Board film, Lord Robens, introduces E. F. Shumacher, Economic Adviser to N.C.B, who discusses the first two Ms.

Title – M for Money.

The first M, Money, refers to how the price of coal is decided. Using illustration he shows what costs need to be taken into consideration; labour, machinery, and time. He describes what amount miners are employed on average and what pay they get.

Title – M for Markets

There is footage of power stations. Market figures are shown to demonstrate that although other sources such as electricity are growing in popularity, the mines still need to produce the coal to convert to electricity. The National Coal Board of chairmen sit around a table discussing what place coal has in the industry and what its future looks like.

Title – M for Men

P.G. Weekes, Director of Studies, N.C.B. Staff College, discusses the work of men and the important role they play in the coal mining industry.

Title – M for Materials and Machines

Here there is footage of the latest machinery in the coal mines not being used. It is described that all machines need to be used to their fullest because they are expensive for the industry to buy.

Lord Robens concludes that all these factors need to be taken into consideration when discussing the coal mining industry because they play a vital role.

Title – The End
Made by the N.C.B. Film Unit 1964

  • Decade