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Morpurgo's Islands of Inspiration

Children's writer Michael Morpurgo travels back to his favourite place, the Isles of Scilly, to explore the stories and legends that are part of the islands' history, where he believes "every rock and wreck has a story to tell" - stories that have inspired his own work.

He first visited the isles over 30 years ago. He went there reluctantly, unconvinced as to what so small a group of islands could offer him. He describes it as "the best decision I never made". What he found there was a place full of beauty, isolation and a unique community. The Isles of Scilly are an archipelago of over two hundred small islands, only five of them inhabited. It was on the smallest of these populated isles, Bryher, that Michael stayed that first time, and which he visits many times a year and upon which many of the stories are based.

He unpicks why the islands have been such a source of magic and inspiration for him. He speaks to Scillonians to hear firsthand old stories and to uncover new ones he's never heard before, revealing how historical fact and handed-down fiction can often be blurred.

Throughout the programme there are readings from Michael's books inspired by these islands.

Producer: Susie Matthews
A Unique production for BBC Radio 4.

30 minutes

Last on

Sat 7 Aug 2010 23:30
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