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Episode 1

Dan Cruickshank and Charlie Luxton uncover the incredible hidden stories behind historic buildings as they are dismantled brick by brick, and meticulously resurrected in new locations.

Every year thousands of ordinary buildings are demolished, smashed down to make way for the new, but some are so special they are snatched from the bulldozers and carefully dismantled. When a new home can be found for them, they are lovingly and painstakingly rebuilt. These are not grand buildings, but everyday buildings that give an extraordinary insight into the lives of the people who lived and worked in them. Deep within their fabric are preserved astonishing stories about how we lived and worked.

Architectural designer Charlie Luxton explores how these vast and hugely complex jigsaw puzzles are pieced back together, trying his hand at the array of ancient crafts required. Meanwhile, architectural historian Dan Cruickshank investigates the buildings' history, proving that even seemingly humble buildings have incredible stories to tell.

In this episode Dan and Charlie follow the reconstruction of one of Britain's earliest aviation buildings: Claude Grahame-White's watchtower. Graham-White was a heroic pioneer of early aviation and his watchtower was the nerve centre of the vast aircraft factory he built to supply warplanes for World War I.

Release date:

1 hour

Last on

Mon 5 Oct 2015 23:00


Role Contributor
PresenterDan Cruickshank
PresenterCharlie Luxton
Executive ProducerJulian Ware
ProducerJamie Simpson
ProducerCaroline Ross Pirie
DirectorJamie Simpson
DirectorCaroline Ross Pirie