THE Mowlem Theatre at Swanage has a preview screening at 2.30pm on Monday 18th December of One Life, a film telling the story of the British humanitarian Nicholas Winton, who helped to rescue hundreds of children from Czechoslovakia from the Nazis on the eve of World War II. The Swanage connection is the local war hero Trevor Chadwick.
Chadwick, dubbed the “Purbeck Schindler,” was formally recognised last summer as a local hero when a statue was unveiled in Swanage to celebrate his efforts in helping Sir Nicholas Winton and the Kindertransport.
One Life, which had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in September, is a 2023 British biographical drama film about the British humanitarian, starring Anthony Hopkins and Johnny Flynn. It begins with Winton, a British stockbroker, visiting Czechoslovakia in the late 1930s, forming plans to assist in the rescue of nearly 700 Jewish children before the onset of World War II.
It also stars Lena Olin, Romola Garai, Alex Sharp, Jonathan Pryce and Helena Bonham Carter in supporting roles.
With the UK theatrical release of the film on 1st January 2024, the Mowlem trustees say it is an incredible honour for the town to be able to commemorate its local hero with an early viewing. Chairman Paul Angel says: “We’re thrilled to be showing this special preview screening of a really important film. I think we all need a reminder of the good people in the world like Nicholas Winton and Trevor Chadwick who risked their lives to stand up for children in another country.
“I’d like to thank the Trevor Chadwick Memorial Trust for putting us in touch with the film’s distributors, and for the work they’ve done to highlight the efforts of a local man who helped rescue so many young refugees from genocide.”
Trevor Chadwick moved to Swanage in 1928 and went on to became a local Latin teacher and lifeboat volunteer. In August 2022, a bronze statue of Trevor was unveiled in Swanage as his position in the operation was more widely recognised. He stayed in Czechoslovakia from January 1939 until summer of 1939 when he had to leave as the approaching war became too dangerous for him to continue evacuating the children. He returned to Swanage and resumed his role as a school teacher.
Tickets are available from te Mowlem website or from the Box Office.