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Quotes / BBC Historical Farm Series

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Though the opening narrations of each show can vary a little from episode to episode, here are their more-or-less standard versions:

This is the valley. A vanished world from a forgotten time. Here, on the Welsh borders, a farm is being run by five hand-picked experts, as it would have been nearly four hundred years ago. Using only resources available in the year 1620, they're labouring for a full calendar year. Turning the clock back to rediscover a way of life from an age gone by...
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Tales from the Green Valley

Here in Shropshire is a farm that's frozen in time, lost in Victorian rural England. Now a unique project will bring it back to life, as it would have been in the 1880s... Ruth Goodman, Alex Langlands and Peter Ginn are taking up the challenge of living as Victorian farmers for a full calendar year. From the depths of winter, to the warmth of summer. They'll wear the clothes, eat the food and experience the day to day life of rural Victorians. They'll rear Victorian breeds of animals, they'll grow crops and get to grips with crafts and skills of the age. This was a time of agricultural revolution in Britain. But the industrialisation of farming would wipe out centuries of traditional skills... Thankfully, there are a select few who still keep them alive. With their help, the team are about to turn back the clock to rediscover a lost world. (...) They'll be getting to grips with every aspect of life... on the Victorian Farm.
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Victorian Farm

Here in Shropshire is a farm frozen in time. lost in Victorian rural England. Last year, Ruth Goodman, Alex Langlands and Peter Ginn brought it back to life, as it would have been in the 1880s. Under the watchful eye of their landlord, Thomas Acton, they enjoyed many successes... and tasted failures. As their time on the farm ended, it was a year that none of them would ever forget. Now, they're returning to the farm, to celebrate a Victoran Christmas on a grand scale. They'll learn new skills and be tested to the limit, as they return once more... to life on the Victorian Farm.
Victorian Farm Christmas

Blists Hill Victorian Town in Shropshire revives the sights, sounds and smells of the nineteenth century. At its heart stands the pharmacy. A treasure house of potions and remedies from a century and a half ago. Now, in a unique experiment, Ruth Goodman, Nick Barber and Tom Quick are opening the doors to the Victorian Pharmacy. Recreating a high street institution we take for granted, but which was once a novel idea. They'll bring the pharmacy to life, sourcing ingredients, mixing potions and dispencing cures. But in an age when skin creams contained arsenic and cold cures were made from opium, the team will have to be highly selective. They'll only make safe versions of traditional remedies and try them out on carefully selected customers. They'll discover an age of social transformation that brought healthcare within the reach of ordinary people for the very first time, heralding a consumer revolution that reached far beyond medicine, to create the model for the modern high street chemist, as we know it today.
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Victorian Pharmacy

Here in Devon, in the tranquil Tamar valley, was once a port bustling with industry. Now Morwellham Quay is to be brought back to life, as it would have been during the reign of king Edward VII. Archaeologists Alex Langlands and Peter Ginn and historian Ruth Goodman will be living the lives of Edwardian farmers for a full calendar year. It's going to be an enormous challenge to get to grips with the skills and crafts of the early 20th century. Here, on the banks of the river Tamar, farming was about more than just livestock and crops. Farmers had to diversify - into fishing, mining, market gardening... and master the industrial advances of the Edwardian Age. It was a time of inventors and enterpreneurs and great social change. (...) A time of new and exciting ventures... on the Edwardian Farm.
Edwardian Farm

The great British countryside... setting for one of the most pivotal battles of the Second World War. Churchill called it "the frontline of freedom". It was fought by the farmers of Britain. When war broke out, the nazis attacked British shipping, attempting to cut off food imports. The government turned to farms to double home-grown food productions. If they failed, the nation could be starved into surrender. Now, archaeologists Alex Langlands and Peter Ginn and historian Ruth Goodman are turning back the clock, working Manor Farm in Hampshire, as it would have been during the Second World War. (...) This is the untold story of the coutryside... at war.
Wartime Farm

The great British countryside... setting for one of the most pivotal battles of the Second World War. Churchill called it "the frontline of freedom". It was fought by the farmers of Britain. It was the battle to feed a nation. Over the course of a year, archaeologists Alex Langlands and Peter Ginn and historian Ruth Goodman worked Manor Farm in Hampshire, as it would have been during the Second World War. Now, Ruth and Peter are returning to Manor Farm, to recreate the conditions of Christmas 1944, the sixth of the war. This time, they're without Alex, so they'll have their work cut out. With shortages biting deeper than ever, the southeast of England was in the grip of the worst bombing campaign since the Blitz of 1940. Ruth and Peter are about to discover how the countryside came to the aid of people living in cities, in their hour of need. They provided food, drink and gifts, to lift the spirits. This is the untold story of the Wartime Farm, at Christmas.
Wartime Farm Christmas

Five hundred years ago, England was emerging into a new era. After years of war, plague and famine, the kingdom was enjoying peace and prosperity under the reign of the first Tudor king, Henry VII. A new class of business-savvy farmer was thriving, boosting food production, while wool from their sheep was generating half the nation's wealth. Many of the nation's farms were under control of the biggest landowner in England after the king, the monasteries. Their influence could be felt in every aspect of daily life. They were not just places of religion, they were at the forefront of technology, education and farming. But with the daily lives of monks devoted to prayer, they depended increasingly on tenant farmers, who worked and tended their lands. Now, historian Ruth Goodman and archaeologists Tom Pinfold and Peter Ginn are turning the clock back to Tudor England, here at Weald and Downland in West Sussex, to work as ordinary farmers under the watchful eye of a monastic landlord. To succeed, they'll have to master long-lost farming methods and get to grips with Tudor technology, while immersing themselves in the beliefs, customs and rituals that shaped the age. This is the untold story of the monastic farms of Tudor England...
Tudor Monastery Farm

Five hundred years ago, Christmas was celebrated every bit as enthusiastically as it is today. If anything, it was bigger. All work stopped on Christmas Eve, for twelve days of revelry and feasting, culminating on the twelfth night, with the biggest party of the year, when madness reigned. Historian Ruth Goodman and archaeologists Tom Pinfold and Peter Ginn have spent the last six months turning the clock back to Tudor England, woking as farmers under the watchful eye of the country's biggest landowners, the monasteries. Now, they're returning, to celebrate Christmas... Tudor style. They must revive lost skills to prepare feasts, learn the art of falconry to catch game for a grand banquet at the monastery, while welcoming new life to their farm... This is the untold story of how the farms of Tudor England celebrated the twelve days of Christmas.
Tudor Monastery Farm Christmas

Castles dominated the medieval landscape, and Britain has some of the finest in the world. Today, most are decaying relics, many of their secrets buried in time. Now, historian Ruth Goodman, and archaeologists Tom Pinfold and Peter Ginn are turning the clock back, to relearn the secrets of the medieval castle builders. The origin of our castles is distinctly French, introduced to Britain at the time of the Norman Conquest in 1066. Here, in the Burgundy region of France, is Guédelon Castle, the world's biggest archaeological experiment. A twenty-five year project... to build a castle from scratch, using the same tools, techniques and materials available in the 13th century. For the next six months, Ruth, Peter and Tom will experience the daily rigours of medieval construction and everyday life. How workers dressed and ate, and the art of combat. This is the story of how to build a medieval castle...
Secrets of the Castle with Ruth, Peter and Tom


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