British History

HomeCFPsJournalsWhat's Going on?News & ReviewsAbout Me

Exhibits
TV

Released

Dream Horse
The film tells the inspiring true story of Dream Alliance, an unlikely race horse bred by small town Welsh bartender, Jan Vokes (Academy Award® nominee Toni Collette). 
Director: Euros Lyn
Writer: Neil McKay
Stars: Toni Collette, Damian Lewis, Joanna Page

Emma.
Adaptation of the Jane Austen novel, Emma.
Director: Autumn de Wilde
Writers: Jane Austen (novel), Eleanor Catton
Stars: Anya Taylor-Joy, Callum Turner, Bill Nighy

The Personal History of David Copperfield
Based on the novel by Charles Dickens.
Director: Armando Iannucci
Writers: Simon Blackwell (screenplay by), Charles Dickens (novel) 
Stars: Dev Patel, Hugh Laurie, Tilda Swinton

1917 
Two young British privates during the First World War are given an impossible mission: deliver a message deep in enemy territory that will stop 1,600 men, and one of the soldier's brothers, from walking straight into a deadly trap.
Director: Sam Mendes
Stars: Andrew Scott, Benedict Cumberbatch, Richard Madden, Mark Strong










                                                         Back to top



Coming Soon


Last Night in Soho (25 Sept.2020)
A young girl, passionate in fashion design, is mysteriously able to enter the 1960s where she encounters her idol, a dazzling wannabe singer. But 1960s London is not what it seems, and time seems to fall apart with shady consequences.
Director: Edgar Wright
Writers: Krysty Wilson-Cairns (screenplay), Edgar Wright (screenplay)
Stars: Thomasin McKenzie, Anya Taylor-Joy, Terence Stamp

Death on the Nile (9 October, 2020)
While on vacation on the Nile, Hercule Poirot must investigate the murder of a young heiress.
Director: Kenneth Branagh
Writers: Agatha Christie (based upon the novel by), Michael Green (screenplay by)
Stars: Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Rose Leslie | See full cast & crew 








                                                    Back to top







In development

The Dig
Cate Blanchett is in talks to play the grieving widow who oversaw one of Britain's greatest archaeological finds in the Susanne Bier period drama The Dig, reports Screen.

Blanchett looks set to play amateur archaeologist Edith Pretty, a driving force behind the 1938-9 excavation of Sutton Hoo burial grounds near Woodbridge, Suffolk. The grounds were unearthed on the Sutton Hoo House estate which Pretty owned along with her husband Frank, who had died four years earlier, after she hired archaeologist Basil Brown to begin an excavation.

Brown made some promising early finds in 1938. But it was when he returned in the summer of 1939 for a further dig that the real treasure was discovered. A 27-metre seventh-century Saxon ship, most likely the last resting-place of King Rædwald of East Anglia, was among the new finds. Pretty donated the entire discovery to the British Museum, and the House and burial site are now in the care of the National Trust.




                                                                    Back to top

Now On
(daily 8-11pm on BBC 1 - 4, ITV, C4 & C5 only)

Top of the Pops: 1989 - BBC 4 (10 July 8:30pm)
Gary Davies presents the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 30 November 1989 and featuring performances by 808 State, Tina Turner, Kaoma, Tears for Fears, Kate Bush, New Kids on the Block and Gloria Estefan. {followed by another episode} 

British History's Biggest Fibs with Lucy Worsley - BBC 2 (11 July 9:00pm)
Historian Lucy Worsley debunks the so-called Glorious Revolution of 1688, when Dutch prince William of Orange invaded the British Isles and stole the throne from his father-in-law, King James II. It has since been described as a `glorious' and `bloodless' revolution. But given that it led to huge slaughter in Ireland and Scotland, how glorious was it really?[Series 1 - Episode 2 of 3 The Glorious Revolution]

​The Luminaries - BBC 1 (12 July 9:00pm)
Anna is uninjured and can't explain why, while one of the Godspeed's passengers discovers Emery trapped in a crate below deck and is terrified when he witnesses the man suddenly, inexplicably, receiving a bullet to the chest. The men of Hokitika begin to piece together what happened on the night Crosbie Wells died, while Emery and Anna reconcile and, at their first kiss, a cosmic transference occurs and they trade souls. That night, they are visited by the ghost of Crosbie Wells. [Series 1 - Episode 5 of 6 "Paradox']

Ian Hislop's Stiff Upper Lip - BBC 4 (15 July 9:00pm)
The broadcaster explores how the British expressed their feelings throughout the 20th century and asks whether regular displays of emotion on today's TV confirm the departure of the `stiff upper lip'. He begins with the 1926 General Strike, revealing how behaviour on both sides prevented an all-out revolution, and visits the Imperial War Museum to discover the original story behind the morale-boosting slogan Keep Calm and Carry On. He also meets playwright Alan Bennett and looks at the nation's reactions to tragedies including the 1966 Aberfan disaster and the death of Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1997. Last in the series.[Series 1 - Episode 3 of 3 "Last Hurrah?"]































  



                                       Back to top 





Just Finished
(may still be available to UK residents on "Catch Up"; links available below for a month after broadcast. Programmes soon to become unavailable denoted in 
red.)

​The Battle of Britain: 3 Days That Saved the Nation
Dan Snow and Kate Humble present a three-part guide to the aerial battle

Tess of the D'Urbervilles 
Four-part drama series based on the novel by Thomas Hardy, written by David Nicholls

Pride and Prejudice 
Award-winning adaptation of Jane Austen's classic Regency romance starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle.

Inside - Wormwood Scrubs: Violence Behind Bars 
The history of the famous prison, which has been used to incarcerate everyone from serial killers Ian Brady and Peter Sutcliffe to rock stars Pete Doherty and Keith Richards. The programme examines its use by MI5 in the Second World War, the story of a Soviet spy who escaped, and perhaps the most well-known inmate, the infamous Charles Bronson.

Black Nurses: The Women Who Saved the NHS
The story of the thousands of Caribbean and African women who answered the call 70 years ago to come to the UK and help build the National Health Service. Told by the women themselves, the documentary reveals the price they paid in leaving behind their families, and examines their struggle to overcome racism and their fight for career progression, as well as their cultural impact here and abroad.

​Black and British: A Forgotten History 
Historian David Olusoga explores the enduring relationship between Britain and people whose origins lie in Africa.

Long Lost Family: What Happened Next
Davina McCall and Nicky Campbell revisit more of the programme's most memorable searches, catching up with two people whose lives have been transformed. Kathleen Fraser Jackson was reunited with her birth mother in Canada, and the programme follows her to Jamaica to meet her youngest sister Peta Gay for the first time. The second story has never been shown before and features twins who were separated as babies.

Britain's Forgotten Slave Owners
How Britain as we know it was built on the profits of slavery, with abolition involving the shocking decision to compensate slave owners for their loss of 'property'.

Hidden Killers of the Post-War Home 
Suzannah Lipscomb reveals the killers that lurked in British homes during different historical periods.

​Murder in the Car Park
Docudrama about the inquiry into the killing of a private investigator in 1987

Princess Diana: In Her Own Words 
Documentary charting Diana's royal journey, examining how she transformed herself from royal wife to global humanitarian. The programme features rarely-seen archive footage, as well as interviews with friends and acquaintances, including her former press secretary Patrick Jephson, royal correspondent and confidante Jennie Bond, and astrologer and close friend Deborah Frank.

Glastonbury
Julien Temple's documentary about the world-famous music festival, which began in 1970 and continues to attract a diverse and enthusiastic range of revellers. The film features performances from artists including Morrissey, David Bowie, Bjork, James Brown, Nick Cave, Joe Strummer, Billy Bragg and Blur, while amateur footage provides an authentic taste of the event.

Boy George's 1970s: Save Me from Suburbia 
The BBC's My Generation season continues as Boy George revisits his teenage years. While history may remember the 1970s as being marked by strikes, poverty and civil discord, the singer reveals that - for the young George O'Dowd - the decade was the beginning of his musical, social and sexual coming-of-age. He discusses how sexual repression and disenfranchisement, along with the advent of glam rock, disco and punk, gave rise to the flamboyant persona he would later unleash on the world, via Culture Club's memorable first appearance on Top of the Pops in 1982

On Chesil Beach 
Edward and Florence, two young university graduates from very different backgrounds, decide to get married after an intense, but non-physical affair. When the pair embark on their honeymoon to Chesil Beach on the Dorset coast, they are both suddenly struck by their fear of the upcoming consummation of the marriage. Romantic drama, starring Saoirse Ronan and Billy Howle.

Against the Law 
Fact-based drama based on the 1954 Montagu Trial, in which gay journalist Peter Wildeblood and his friends Lord Montagu and Michael Pitt-Rivers were tried for homosexual offences. The ensuing scandal and public outcry over the fairness of the case forced a reluctant government to set up a committee to investigate whether homosexuality should be legalised. Starring Daniel Mays and Mark Gatiss and featuring testimony from gay men who lived through those days, a retired police officer and a former psychiatric nurse. 

The Salisbury Poisonings
In March 2018 Salisbury became the site of an unprecedented national emergency. This three-part dramatisation focuses on the extraordinary heroism shown by the local community.

A House Through Time
David Olusoga tells the story of those who lived in one house, from the time it was built until now 

The Beatles: Made on Merseyside
Few dispute that the Beatles defined 1960s music and popular culture like no other band, but how John, Paul, George and Ringo made the journey from Merseyside teenagers to international pop stars is less known. Director Alan Byron's documentary recounts the rise of the band as American rock 'n' roll and rhythm and blues dragged post-war Liverpool into one of the most vibrant music cities ever with the Mersey Beat sound.

Andrew Marr's History of Modern Britain 
​Andrew Marr presents a history of Britain from the end of the Second World War to the start of the third millennium.

Madame Tussaud: A Legend in Wax 
The story of the woman behind the worldwide waxworks empire, revealing how his single mother and entrepreneur travelled across the Channel to England, where she overcame the odds to establish her enduring brand. Determined to leave an account of who she was and the times she lived through, her memoirs, letters and papers offer a unique insight into the creation of the extraordinary empire that bears her name. 

Amy
Documentary portrait of soul, jazz and R'n'B singer-songwriter Amy Winehouse, whose untimely death in July 2011 followed a well-publicised history of drugs and alcohol abuse. Director Asif Kapadia traces Amy's rise and demise over the 13 years preceding her death, telling her story via her music and autobiographical song lyrics, video footage shot by friends and family, archive television clips, plus voiceover interviews with those who were personally and professionally close to her. Contributors include Pete Doherty, Mitch Winehouse, Tony Bennett, Mark Ronson and Tyler James.








































                                                   Back to top

Announced, but no air date set

Anne - ITV 
Factual drama focusing on Anne Williams; who dedicated her life to discovering the truth about the Hillsborough disaster which claimed the life of her son Kevin who was only fifteen years old at the time. 

Best Interests  - BBC1 
Four-part drama from Jack Thorne which tells the story of a family driven apart by having to make choices no parent would ever want to make. Andrew and Nicci’s daughter, Marnie, has a life-threatening condition. The doctors believe it is in her best interests to be allowed to die, but her loving family disagree. And so begins a fight that will take them through every stage of a legal process, as they struggle to contemplate this huge decision. Who decides? And in whose best interests will it be?

The Boys  - Channel 4 
New five-part series from Russell T Davies which focuses on three eighteen-year-olds Ritchie, Roscoe and Colin as they leave home to embark on a new life in London in 1981. The story will look at the AIDS epidemic and will follow the three characters throughout the 1980's to explore their ups and downs. 

Black Narcissus  - BBC 1 
Three-part adaptation of Rumer Godden’s iconic tale of sexual repression and forbidden love from Amanda Coe. Returning this haunting love story to its original setting in the 1930s, as the western colonial order is about to explode into the crisis of World War II.  Black Narcissus follows Sister Clodagh and the nuns of St Faiths, who travel to Nepal to set up a branch of their order in the remote palace of Mopu.

Call the Midwife -  BBC 1 
One more series of the incredibly popular nostalgic drama
                                                        Back to top 

The Elephant Man - BBC 1 
Two-part dramatisation of John Merrick's extraordinary story, from birth to death written by Neil McKay and starring Stranger Things' Charlie Heaton in the lead role.

Englistan  - BBC 2  
Nine-part drama series created by Riz Ahmed exploring three generations of the same Pakistani-family over four decades as they attempt to settle in England.

​Happy Valley  - BBC 1  
Third series of Sally Wainwright's gripping crime drama..

The North Water - BBC 2 
Four-part thriller from Andrew Haigh focusing on a disgraced ex-army surgeon who, in the 1850s, who signs up as a ship's doctor on a whaling mission in the arctic. Colin Farrell stars as harpooner Henry Drax.
                                                                    Back to top

A Suitable Boy  - BBC1 
Eight part drama from Andrew Davies adapting Vikram Seth’s international bestseller A Suitable Boy. A modern classic about a young woman’s search for love and identity in a newly independent, post-Partition India defining its own future, this beloved novel has never been adapted for the screen before. Now, Andrew Davies’ scripts will bring the story to a whole new audience with his signature blend of warmth, wit and humanity

Taboo   - BBC 1 
 A second series of Tom Hardy's atmospheric period drama.


                                                                Back to top
To Sir With Love - BBC 1 
 A one-off adaptation of ER Braithwaite's autobiographical story about a Guyanese RAF engineer who becomes a teacher in a challenging school in the East End of London.

Unforgotten -  ITV 
Fourth series of Chris Lang's crime drama starring Nicola Walker and Sanjeev Bhaskar.

Year of the Rabbit - C4 
Six-part sitcom written by and starring Matt Berry as DI Rabbit; a drunken Victorian-era sleuth who solves crimes alongside his by-the-books partner played by Freddie Fox.









Please note that no American museums are listed below.  This is only because it is too difficult to keep track of all the exhibits at all of the US museums that might be relevant to this site. Also,  the following list is not  a guide  for those traveling in Britain. It is not  a comprehensive guide to what is on at museums in the UK. Only exhibits which focus on British history are listed below.

Please  note that, unless otherwise indicated, all venues are in London. Exhibits about to end are noted in red. Those not yet opened are designated in orange.

COVID-19:  In general, museums are closed. The exhibits below are all temporarily closed but will re-open after the lockdown. Below are exhibits that deal with British history and have online access.

Online British History exhibits
The National Archives

Permanent and temporary exhibits on Jewish History in Britain

Aubrey Beardsley
Tate Britain

British Baroque: Power and Illusion
Tate Britain

Mary Cameron: Life in Paint
City Art Centre |Edinburgh

George IV: Royalty, Racing and Reputation
National Heritage Centre for Horseracing & Sporting Art | Suffolk

Steve McQueen
Tate Modern

May Morris: Art & Life
Dovecot Studios, Edinburgh

Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours 208th Exhibition
Mall Galleries

War and conflict exhibits







                                                                Back to top
ExhibitsMoviesTV in the U.K.
Movies
Updated weekly
Updated weekly
COVID-19: In general, cinemas are closed. The films deal with British history and can be streamed. The links below contain a webpage that lists sites where the film can be streamed.