The public access copies of the films are on compact discs, all are silent films. Between 1928 and 1930 Norman Lidster bought a black and white 16 mm movie camera which he used to documents his travels throughout North America and notable city events in New Westminster. Norman also became a member of the Amateur Cinema League (ACL); this can be seen is some of his films. In 1938, he began using colour film. Along with shooting his own movies this collection contains a number of commercially produced films that Norman Lidster bought (or otherwise acquired) over the years. Most of these commercially bought films are different types of travel videos or news reels. These purchased films range from events shot between 1910s to 1958. The films shot by Norman Lidster have been shot between 1928 into the 1960s. These movies are a combination of home movies of Norman Lidster’s travels in North American, various family scenes, and important events in New Westminster, including: May Days 1931 to 1963 (excluding 1939, 1960 and 1962), Royal visits 1939, 1951, and 1959 to New Westminster, official opening of the New Queensborough Bridge, and the 1950 opening of Irving House as a museum. At least two of these films might have been shot by the Springate family (CD 500 and 171, however this has not been confirmed). The New Westminster Archives has 59 metal canisters with 58 reels of film. Of these 58 reels of film, 48 have been digitized. Some of the digital versions of these films contain more than one reel of film (these have been clearly marked). Furthermore, some of the footage shot be Norman Lidster is mixed on the same film as the commercially produced films that he bought, with 3 films having mixed contents, 28 films are shot by Norman Lidster and 12 films are commercially bought.
The fonds consists of the following series: Home Movies; May Day Home Movies; Commercially produced films; and Combined home movies and commerically produced films.