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Exploring the Past: Post War Britain

Six 15-year-olds trace their family histories and find out what life was like in post-war Britain. Through examining changes in society, they discover how their lives are connected to the past.

Kirsty from Wycombe discovers how the new National Health Service saved her grandmother's life when a new mobile x-ray unit picked up the early signs of TB in a random test.

Mitchell from Walsall interviews his grandmother, Jacki, who was a mod in the 60s. Now aged 65, Jacki re-visits former dance hall Bloxwich Baths, and reveals her memories of life as a post-war teenager, following the fashions of Mary Quant and sporting Vidal Sassoon-inspired haircuts.

Elliot from west London finds out how his grandfather, Philip, stowed away on a cargo ship from Ghana to build a new life alongside thousand of migrants invited to Britain to help build the new post-war Britain.

Nicole visits London's East End where her grandfather, Steve, worked as a photographer for a local newspaper. Nicole meets Ann and Debbie, a mother and daughter who featured in Steve's photographs, and who, at the time, were living in an estate that had been neglected by the local council.

Amba from Isleworth explores the role of women in the immediate post-war years. She talks to her great-grandmother Betty who worked in a food processing factory in Hayes and was paid less than her male fellow workers on the same production line.

Sophie, from York, follows in the footsteps of her grandfather, Roger Hampton, who spent his life painting the industrial area he grew up in, in Tyldesley, Lancashire. Inspired by LS Lowry, he is part of what has come to be known as the northern school of British artists.

All the youngsters find their encounters challenge their preconceptions about the period and the people who lived in them. Mitchell concludes that from now on he will look at older people differently and remember that they too had interesting experiences in their youth.

Release date:

1 hour

Last on

Tue 10 Jun 2014 04:00

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