Silenced: The Hidden History Of Disabled Britain

Ep. 1/1

Cerrie Burnell
Cerrie Burnell

In this shocking and moving film, writer, actor, and presenter Cerrie Burnell uncovers the hidden story of how disabled people fought back - and won their freedom.

For more than a century, one group of people in Britain has been shut out of society, denied basic human rights, and treated with fear and prejudice.

Now, in this shocking and moving film, writer, actor, and presenter Cerrie Burnell uncovers the hidden story of how disabled people fought back - and won their freedom.

Cerrie was born without the lower part of her right arm. As a presenter on CBeebies, Cerrie was astonished to learn that some viewers thought her appearance would ‘scare’ children who were watching. Now, she wants to find out where these attitudes towards disabled people come from, and why they persist today.

She’ll discover how our modern attitudes to disabled people were first formed in the workhouses of Victorian Britain. She’ll uncover the original records of an institution created to segregate disabled people and stop them from having children. And she’ll trace the hidden lives of those confined to institutions for their whole lives.

Cerrie will hear astonishing stories of heartbreak and cruelty. But she will also meet the pioneers who changed the lives of disabled people forever - like John Evans, who was one of the very first to move from a residential home into a home of his own, and Alia Hassan, who as part of the campaign for human rights brought the streets of London to a standstill in order to be allowed to get on a bus.

Ultimately Cerrie will discover that although much has changed for disabled people in Britain today, the battle is not yet won.

Silenced: The Hidden Story Of Disabled Britain is a story of huge social change, that many of us still don’t know, told through the hidden lives of disabled people.

Publicity contact: BDW

Channel
DateTuesday, 19 January 2021
TimeTBC -
TBC
UpdatesConfirmed for BBC Two on 19 January at 9pm to 10pm
Week03