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Reel History of Britain

Episode 9: The Glory Days of Fishing

Duration: 29 minutes

First broadcast: on BBC Two ScotlandLatest broadcast: on BBC Two Northern Ireland HD

Melvyn Bragg, accompanied by a vintage mobile cinema, travels across the country, to show incredible footage preserved by the British Film Institute and other national and regional film archives, to tell the history of modern Britain.

This episode comes from Great Yarmouth, once home to the world's largest herring fleet, and looks back to the 1920s and the heyday of British fishing.

Melvyn speaks to Fred Normandale, whose family have been fishing since the early eighteenth century, and Ronnie King who first went to sea in a steam drifter in 1937. Maritime historian and writer Mike Smylie talks about the heyday of herrings before the fish finger got us hooked. And fishing lassie descendant Irene Watt provides an unexpected musical treat with a sea shanty about the work of her ancestors. Show less


Melvyn Bragg
Series Producer:
Dympna Jackson
Executive Producer:
Ruth Pitt

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