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Medway Mudlarks

Episode 2 of 5

On the banks of the River Medway, Nicola White is in search of artistic inspiration. Driftwood, perhaps? Or a Victorian poison bottle or Roman pot?

On the banks of the River Medway, Nicola White is in search of artistic inspiration. Driftwood, perhaps? A Victorian poison bottle or a Roman pot? In the second of a series of Essays on British rivers Eleanor Rosamund Barraclough joins the mudlark artist as she combs through mud and shingle.

The Medway rises in the South Downs and passes through sleepy Maidstone but it starts to get really interesting as it broadens out into mudflats, industry and islands. It's here that Kentish history, from the 43AD Roman invasion of Britain through the peaks and troughs of the Royal Navy's Chatham Dockyards to the preparations for Nazi invasion, can be read from the shore.

Nicola collects the stories she finds there- military dog-tags, messages in bottles- and turns them into art inspired by the naïve abstraction of 20th-century St. Ives.

Producer: Alasdair Cross

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14 minutes

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