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The Wells of Montrose (clip)

Oil rig operation

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Overview of oil formation and oil rig construction recording the operation of the Amoco Alpha rig. A tribute to the late 'Mitch' Watt who was responsible for many oil and gas operations in the North Sea from 1965-1977. This clip includes: general shots around operational rig and description of how oil is formed. North Sea Gas installations at sea and on land, scientist at work evaluating results of seismic survey to consider whether to drill for oil. Shot of exploration rig in heavy seas and drill deck of rig.

Questions & Activities


  • What other sources of energy are there apart from oil?
  • How is oil discovered?
  • How does the film use music and sound to make the story of oil formation dramatic?
  • How long has North Sea oil been exploited for?


Science: Investigate the ways we use oil? How is crude oil processed and used?

Science: How many things in your classroom are made from oil?

English/Science: The film makes oil rigs high-tech and glamorous. Is this a true reflection of what it's like to live and work on an oil rig?

Science/Technology: What are the possible environmental implications from drilling and using oil?

Clip Details

Record Id 007-000-000-121-C
Resource Rights Holder Courtesy of the BP Video Library
Project Ref 0694
Date 1977
Genre Documentary, Promotional
School Subject Technologies, Geography, Environmental Studies
Who Amoco (sponsor), Charles Barker Films (production company), Ferdinand Fairfax (director)
Where North Sea
Attributes Colour, Sound
Clip Length 4:36
Film Length 27:00