The Riddle of the Tides

Image for The Riddle of the TidesNot currently available on BBC iPlayer

Coast, Series 7 Episode 5 of 6

Duration: 1 hour

A journey around Britain to experience our surrounding seas' tidal ebb and flow at their most extreme.

Nick Crane confronts the terrifying power of the tides head-on as he paddles for dear life in a kayak to conquer the fearsome, tidal rapids that swirl off the island of Anglesey. Then in Liverpool, he discovers a remarkable but forgotten machine used to predict the tides for the D-Day landings. Developed over 100 years ago, this massive mechanical computer is capable of calculating sea levels anywhere in the world many years in advance and with incredible precision. As it is painstakingly pieced back together, Nick meets one of the women chosen to operate it so many years ago.

Miranda Krestovnikoff ventures to Jersey for an expedition to the Seymour Tower, a spectacular fortress that is transformed daily into an island outpost at high tide. Miranda stays overnight in the Tower to await an exceptionally low 'Spring Tide', when exotic sea creatures might be revealed. In Scarborough, Tessa Dunlop challenges both changing times and the tide of fashion. She's putting bathing suits to the test on the beach, from a Victorian lady's cotton cover-up to a Swinging Sixties little nylon one-piece, as she explores the ebb and flow of stylish swimwear over a century of textile innovation.

Mark Horton heads to Poppit Sands in Wales, where at very low tide the faint outline of a huge stone structure mysteriously appears beneath the waves. Mark explores the remains of this massive medieval fish trap, which was built more than 900 years ago but lost as sea levels rose and only recently re-discovered. Yet who was so famished for fish that they constructed this elaborate, sub-sea, stone structure to harvest the bounty of the tides?

Credits

Presenter
Nicholas Crane
Presenter
Tessa Dunlop
Presenter
Mark Horton
Presenter
Miranda Krestovnikoff
Series Editor
Steve Evanson
Executive Producer
William Lyons

Broadcasts

Meet the team

Coast ream lineup

Viking Fire festivals and the UK's oldest puffin: the Coast team can investigate anything

Buy online

Available on: DVD

From suppliers including: BBC Shop

Where to buy

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Added. Check out your playlist Dismiss