The Club was founded in 1951 as a Cine Club. In the fifties there was a membership of over two hundred and a waiting list! Quite a number of members came from Dumfries, Annan and Gretna, this may have influenced the decision to join ‘Scottish Amateur Moviemakers' rather than either the North West or North East regions. In fact the Edinburgh Cine & Video Society played a major part in the early development of the club by providing speakers and advice.
Early programmes indicate that most of the films shown came under the title of ‘members films'. They included silent holiday films and some documentary style films, commentaries came later when the method of striping films was introduced. There was a strong Scottish influence in the chosen speakers and film presenters. Demonstrators and speakers came from organisations such as Kodak, probably with a vested interest!
Over the years meetings have been held in a number of locations in the city, including the old County Hotel and the Crown and Mitre Hotel. There was a problem with licensed premises however as some members were reluctant to leave the bar after the interval! The Club has enjoyed the use of the St. Michael's Church Parish Rooms since 1984.
Changes in our title tell us something of the way in which amateur film making has altered, though we are still affectionately known as the Cine Club amongst some long standing members. In 1993 we became the Cine and Video Club and in 2004 we changed again to Camcorder Club.
Currently we have a membership of thirty-five of whom about ten are active film makers. A variety of themes are included in our annual programme of twelve meetings. They range from local interest, travel, documentaries and occasionally some old favourites from previous years will be shown.
There are two competitions in the annual programme. For the ‘Open Competition‘ entries of not more than ten minutes on topics other than holidays are required. The ‘Holiday Competition' is designed for members to show their particular holiday films, also with a strict limit of fewer than fifteen minutes.
As a member of SAM we enter its annual ‘Choice of Clubs' Competition and, together with an evening set aside for visitors, it gives us an insight into what is being done in the world of amateur film making. Recently our visitors have included David Whitworth from the Huddersfield Club and Michael Gough from Newcastle. We have an interchange of presentations with members of the Hawick Club. We are eligible to enter other SAM competitions and attend their regular meetings.
We have an annual Summer Outing to a suitable venue which it is hoped (weather permitting) will provide opportunities for filming. In 2008 we went to Newcastle for a trip down the River Tyne, in 2009 the outing was to Grasmere, followed by a cruise on Lake Windermere and in 2010 we had a day in Liverpool.
Looking to the future our principal aims are:-
· To ensure the long time future of the club by recruiting new members.
· To encourage more of the current members to produce their own films.
· To promote the use of the computer in film editing with software such as Adobe and Pinnacle.
· To hold additional ‘workshop' meetings to further the practice and art of film making.
· To enter the various SAM Competitions.
· To foster relationships with other Clubs eg Hawick, Huddersfield and Newcastle.
· To organize some group projects for outings during the summer months.
· To develop this web site.