BBC TV blog
Producer Tom St John Gray on his job in making The High Street as realistic as possible: "Finding authentic prices in old money for each item was a real challenge."Read Tom St John Gray's post on the BBC TV blog
Family Highlight: Debbie Sergison, grocer
The Victorian era was the start of a family adventure that was going to change us all forever. Getting stared was the hardest part - waiting to be told we could enter Shepton Mallet’s high street seemed to last an eternity and my nerves started to kick in.
Seeing our family name above the shop for the very first time was absolutely amazing as was meeting all the other families that were going on this same journey. Once we were introduced to the Turn Back Time chamber of commerce (Gregg, Tom and Juliet) and they briefed us on what was expected of us, it was time for us to do what we do best - to be grocers. But the biggest shock came when my daughter, Saffron, and I were told we could not be seen on the shop floor during opening hours - but I do believe rules are there to be broken!
Once I got to grips with all the rules of the era I really did enjoy myself and I gained numerous skills of which I have taken to my own business including tea blending, coffee roasting and soap making. If I’m honest, I was expecting this era to be quite drab but I was pleasantly surprised - we had enough decent food in the shop to cook for my family and our house was surprisingly plush in comparison to the other families’ homes.
I was so impressed at how our children adapted so quickly to Victorian life especially Harry, he worked all day in the shop, then he did the deliveries by horse and cart and when he got home he had to do the ledger – it’s sure to say he was happy to see his bed at the end of the night. And at least he didn’t have to get up and go to the toilet as he had a chamber pot in his room!
Photo: Jack the baker
For poorer families in Victorian England, bread was a vital part of their diet.
Photo: Simon the ironmonger
Ironmongers and blacksmiths were the principal supplier of metallic implements up until the Industrial Revolution.
- Series Producer
- Cate Hall
- Executive Producer
- Leanne Klein
Available on: DVD
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