British History

HomeCFPsJournalsWhat's Going on?News & ReviewsAbout Me



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

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

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)

King of Thieves - C5 (5 Aug. 8:00pm)
A thief pulls together a band of misfit criminals to plot the biggest bank heist in British history. The crooks manage to escape with around £200million worth of stolen jewels and money, but when police are called to the scene and the investigation starts, the cracks between the eccentric gang members begin to show, as they row over how to share the goods and become increasingly distrustful of each other. Crime drama based on the Hatton Garden heist, starring Michael Caine, Michael Gambon, Francesca Annis, Jim Broadbent, Ray Winstone and Tom Courtenay.

Emma  - BBC 4 (6 Aug. 9:00pm)
The outing to Box Hill ends in disaster when Emma insults Miss Bates. After being berated by Knightley, she realises her behaviour was shameful and tries to make amends, but Jane refuses to speak to her. When Frank's overbearing aunt dies, the Westons expect him to propose to Emma, but his subsequent actions start a chain of events that shocks the heroine, resulting in the realisation of a truth she previously dismissed. Romola Garai and Jonny Lee Miller star in the final instalment of Sandy Welch's dramatisation of Jane Austen's novel. Last in the series.[Series 1 - Episode 4 of 4]

Downton Abbey - ITV {followed by another episode} (9 Aug. 8:00pm)
The Crawleys watch Henry compete in a motor racing event, an occasion that leaves Mary reeling. Violet hatches a plan which surprises the family and delights Miss Denker, and learns more about Amelia's intentions in befriending Isobel. Molesley and Daisy rise to the challenges of examination day, Andy's secret is brought to light, Thomas feels isolated, and Mrs Patmore and Mrs Hughes teach Carson a lesson.[Series 6 - Episodes 7 & 8 of 9] 

Best Of Bad TV - C5 (TBD)
A look back at the decade that brought many opportunities for eye-popping errors, but few more ill-conceived than sitcom Heil Honey I'm Home!, which featured fictionalised versions of Adolf Hitler and Eva Braun living next door to a Jewish couple. The intention was to spoof 1950s American sitcoms, but most critics felt the show fell short on taste and decency.[Series 2, Ep. 2 of 3]


                                       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 

Churchill's Secret Affair 
Documentary exploring the secret relationship between the prime minister and a woman he met in the South of France in the 1930s. During an important visit to President Roosevelt at the height of the war, he was reunited with his former lover, now stranded in the US and in possession of a portrait that could have a devastating impact during a dangerous period for the nation.

The Last Pirates: Britain's Rebel DJs 
Rodney P's career as a rapper would not have been possible without the lifeblood of pirate radio airplay in the 1980s. Here, he presents an alternative history of Britain during a time of entrepreneurialism and social upheaval, with archive and music that celebrates a very different side of Thatcher's Britain. His story details how land-based pirate radio broadcasters created a platform for black music, changing the soundtrack of Britain for ever. Featuring contributions by DJs, station owners and Department of Trade and Industry enforcers.

Top of the Pops: 1989 
Mike Read and Paul Gambaccini present the edition first broadcast on 28 December, featuring performances by Kim Wilde, Aswad and Band Aid II. Plus, Bros, Duran Duran, the Pet Shop Boys, Michael Jackson, Phil Collins, Kylie Minogue and many others feature in a reflective look at hits from the entire decade.

​The Great British Seaside Holiday - Timeshift
A celebration of the British seaside holiday experience, from its Victorian origins and heyday in the 1950s, through its slow decline and attempts at modern-day reinvention.

The Golden Age of Steam Railways  
Home movies help tell the story of how bands of volunteers got together to save some of Britain's railway tracks and the steam engines that ran on them

In July 2005, 18-year-old Anthony Walker was murdered by two white men in an unprovoked racist attack in a Liverpool park. Jimmy McGovern's drama imagines what life may have held for Anthony if the teenager had not been killed, with the reverse chronology seeing him realise his dreams and enjoy the life he had a right to before fate - and hate - took it all away. Toheeb Jimoh stars.

Anne at 70: The Best Queen We Never Had? 
Documentary exploring the life of the queen's only daughter. The programme examines her skill as a horse rider, representing Britain in three-day eventing at the 1976 Olympics on her mother's horse, as well as her support for various charities and foundations, and the incident in 1974, when she survived an attempt to kidnap her and hold her to ransom.

Diana vs the Tabloids 
A look at the Princess of Wales' complex relationship with the press, examining the deal she made with newspaper editors after her divorce from Prince Charles where in exchange for privacy she would feed their news desks stories. However, the tabloids' obsession with Diana, and her need of them to stay relevant, would become a dangerous game. What were the events that led to one of the most tragic deaths in recent history?

The Golden Age of Liners
Antiques Roadshow's Paul Atterbury recalls the heyday of the great ocean liners, travelling round Britain to reveal a story of design, politics and tragedy as he finds out how these great ships captured the public's imagination. Along the way he uncovers a cinema in Scotland built from the interiors of the SS Homeric, and visits a house in Poole, Dorset, where cabins from the Mauretania have been preserved.

Stephen Lawrence: Has Britain Changed?
The killing of George Floyd in the US triggered global protests, with thousands also taking to the streets in Britain. In light of these events, Rageh Omaar and Anushka Asthana host this live debate to examine racial equality in the UK. They discuss how much has changed in Britain almost three decades after the racist murder of teenager Stephen Lawrence.

Jane Austen: Behind Closed Doors
Historian Lucy Worsley embarks on a road trip across England to take in some of the places Jane Austen lived in and visited during her lifetime. She aims to demonstrate how Jane's personal experiences influenced the central themes of home and property in her novels, and makes use of detective-work to recreate some of the most important locations that no longer stand. She begins in Stoneleigh Abbey, Warwickshire, retracing a journey that marked one of the many times the Austens veered wildly between wealth and genteel poverty - mirroring the Dashwoods of Sense and Sensibility. Lucy also travels from Jane's birthplace in Steventon, Hampshire, to her brother's grand estate at Godmersham Park - the inspiration for Darcy's Pemberley in Pride and Prejudice, along with Lyme Regis, Bath and Southampton.

The Murder of Stephen Lawrence
Dramatisation of Neville and Doreen Lawrence's struggle to prove that their son was murdered by a gang of racists in 1993.

My Friend Jane
Documentary shedding light on the lives of Jane Austen super-fans, who read, live and breathe all-things Regency. While Austen's works are often considered genteel romances, they are often shot through with acid-sharp wit, social commentary, and a hint of biography, with certain elements from her famous novels more than mirroring aspects of Jane's own life. Here, the self-professed `Janeites' share their thoughts on why they have fallen in love with Austen's genteel narratives, and explain what the work of a vicar's daughter from Hampshire who died 200 years ago means to them.

Ian Hislop's Stiff Upper Lip 
Ian Hislop asks when and why we British have bottled up or let out our feelings and how this has affected our history.

​Seven Ages of Britain 
David Dimbleby tells the story of Britain's last 2,000 years through its art and treasure.

​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.

Becoming Jane 
A young Jane Austen's parents are intent on finding her a wealthy husband, but she remains determined to marry for love. Before long, a dashing but penniless lawyer catches the future novelist's eye, but any suggestion of romance meets with distinct disapproval from their families. Romantic period drama, with Anne Hathaway, James McAvoy, Julie Walters, Maggie Smith and Ian Richardson.

                                                   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

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.
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.