In 1913, John East, Percy Nash and Arhur
Moss Lawrence got together for the purpose of starting a new film studio.
They wanted to build a modern studio outside of the fog of London, but close
enough for the ease of actors, supplies and distribution. They also wanted
enough land to make a wide variety of films. They located this beautiful
piece of land just outside of London at Elstree. well..... they THOUGHT
it was Elstree. The railway was the dividing line between Elstree and Borehamwood.
They happened to buy land on the Borehamwood side.
And they built a beauty.... It was called
Neptune Studios and in January 1914 they moved into the most modern studio
in all of England. It had dressing rooms with running water, administrative
offices, processing facilities and a generating plant. The studio stage
was over 70 feet and they advertised having the first dark stage in all
Unfortunately, the outbreak of WWI, in 1914
moved most operating studios to produce patriotic films and for the first
3 years, Neptune prospered. However, the war took it's toll, and there was
a tremendous loss of actors, technicians and management to the war. In addition,
the introduction of an Amusement Tax cut deep into the profits. They tried
to lease more stage time to independent producers but by 1917, the studio
ceased production. In 1920, the company went into liquidation.
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