Leather to Last

Documentary, Irish Culture
Directed by:
Roy Spence
Produced by:
Gothic Films


12 mins

This documentary was made by Roy Spence for the Ulster Folk Museum and showcases the work of Alex Ralston. Ralston is one of the few remaining shoemakers in Belfast who hand crafts shoes using leather and traditional skills. Alex takes us through the entire process from original pattern through to the finished pair of shoes.

Roy Spence is an award-winning amateur filmmaker. For the past 50 years, Spence has been making and screening a series of remarkable and sometimes eccentric films in his cinema in Comber, Co. Down. The films span many genres from sci-fi to horror to folk-life documentaries shot between 1965 and 1986. His collection of over 40 films (13 documentaries/non-fiction and 29 fiction feature films) is held and preserved in the IFI Irish Film Archive. To watch more of the Roy Spence Collection click here.