Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Andrew Marr

I have been watching the excellent programme on BBC Four - The Making of Modern Britain.   It was especially good tonight because it was about the thirties, finishing this week with the outbreak of war in 1939.   A lot of it was a time I remembered - early in the thirties, when I was born, was a tough time for the working man and my father talked about it when I was a child, so I grew up knowing a lot about it too.

The old footage on camera was brilliant - , the rise of the Blackshirts, a succession of weak Prime Ministers - Baldwin, Ramsey McDonald, Chamberlain - Churchill's arrival back on the scene.  

If you aren't watching it I urge you to catch up on it .    It is a fascinating history lesson from beginning to end - ought to be compulsory viewing in school.

Of course, as with all life, it is easy to be wise after the event but it shows up such glaring errors in government here, attitudes to places like India and most of all foreign policy.   Let's hope we've got it all a lot more in perspective these days. I can't help wondering how such a film in the future will view Brexit.

14 comments:

donna baker said...

Sounds interesting Pat. I'll see if it is on the television across the pond.

Hilary said...

My mother grew up in England, born in 1924.......emigrated to the US in 1946. I heard a lot of stories about England in her day.

Granny Sue said...

My mother was also born in England, in Cambridgeshire, and came to the US on the Queen Mary in February 1946. Her stories of growing up were so interesting--and her sister is still living. I hope the program you are watching becomes available here in the States.

Mac n' Janet said...

Modern history should be a required course for everyone, particularly politicians.

John Gray said...

I heard about living life in the slums if 1930 Liverpool from my grandmother
No NHS no food, pawning your best coat on Monday and getting it back on Friday
Cockroaches in your shoes at night
Hard times

Jocelyn Thurston said...

Just popping by to say I've been reading your posts and it seems you are faring well...good days, bad days...life is normal as you put it.
We are still deep in winter though the sun is warmer and days lighter already. We've had lots of ice underfoot and have to take care.
Hubby and I are watching The Crown...are you familiar. We are enjoying it.

Robin Mac said...

I hope that series comes to SBS here in Australia, it sounds really interesting. I heard my parents talking a lot about the depression and hard times here in Australia in the thirties. We were lucky enough to live in a country town (I was born in the late thirties) with relatives on properties (sheep stations) so had access to meat and Dad grew our own vegies. We were really lucky in that regard, but my mother often gave men 'on the wallaby' some bread and dripping and a pot of tea in return for a load of wood chopped for the kitchen fire.
I think films like that should be compulsory viewing for the young ones of today who have no concept of how hard life was back then.

Derek Faulkner said...

I haven't seen the programme that you speak of but another one that has just finished is one about an old terraced house in Falkner Street in Liverpool. After showing it as it is today, they researched it back to it being built and then researched every family that had lived in it over the last couple of hundred years. Fascinating stuff.

Librarian said...

Good history lessons are so much more than repeating the dry facts, aren't they, and knowing about our (recent) history can and should make such a difference to our actions today.

Heather said...

Somehow I have missed this programme. I was born three years before the outbreak of WW2 and as I grew up I remember family members reminiscing about the National Strike and the Yarrow March. We were very lucky to live in the country and could grow vegetables and keep hens to help the purse. The hardship that others had to endure is unimaginable.

thelma said...

Funnily enough I read an article online about a young female working in London as a journalist earning a good salary but moaning that she couldn't afford a house ever. She got in touch with Paul Lewis (money guru) who told her to record her spending each day. Well it was frittered away, sometimes as much as a £100 a day, on coffees, meals out, the odd dress for a party. That is the difference between yesteryear and today. Indulgence has replaced the thrift, born of necessity, that the 30s,40s, and the 50s brought to us.

Derek Faulkner said...

Thelma makes a very valid point, look at how much these youngsters spend on new Smartphones alone. Also, many, if not all youngsters when starting in their own homes, expect to have the
same standard of furniture and appliances that were in their parent's homes, ignoring the fact that their parents had spent many, many years arriving at such standards. When I first got married in 1970, our start out bed and mattress was aquired from the home of an elderly relative who had died, pretty grim but a start.

Gwil W said...





A Great Industrial State will arise in Northern Europe. The peoples of the East and the Balkans and squadrons of cheap labour immigrants will be its vassals.

I've just started on Dickens' book Hard Times. I can't think why I haven't read it before.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Derek I watched the Falkner Street programmes - very good too.
Thanks everyone for calling in.