Great British Railway Journeys 18 November 2021: Thursday on BBC Four

Canterbury to Alexandra Palace – Steered by his 1930s Bradshaw’s guidebook, this week Michael Portillo explores the east of England in the interwar period.

Beginning in Canterbury in Kent, Michael treads the boards as he uncovers the political message behind a play, published in 1936, inspired by the 12th-century murder of Archbishop Thomas à Becket.

In Maidstone, Michael learns of the international origins of the most British symbol of remembrance, before paying his respects at a war memorial based on London’s Cenotaph.

Outside Sevenoaks, Michael visits the country home of one of his political heroes, Sir Winston Churchill, and discovers how the 1930s were wilderness years at Chartwell, as Churchill warned against Nazi German appeasement.

As Michael enters the capital, there is a visit to the brand new London Bridge station before he heads to Alexandra Palace, the birthplace of television.



About Great British Railway Journeys

Cartographer George Bradshaw produced the first comprehensive timetable and travel guide of Great Britain’s railway system in 1840. Armed with his Bradshaw’s Guide, presenter Michael Portillo travels around the country by train exploring the ways that society and industry have changed since the guide was first published during the Victorian era. In each destination Michael visits local landmarks, meets residents, enjoys local food, and tries his hand at local crafts and manufacture, and considers the legacy of the industrial revolution.

This show is broadcast on BBC Two, also known as the British Broadcasting Corporation.

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