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Queen Victoria

This month marks 200 years since Queen Victoria’s birth, so Countryfile is exploring the Victorian fascination with nature and the great outdoors.

This month marks 200 years since Queen Victoria’s birth, so Countryfile is exploring the Victorians' fascination with nature and the great outdoors. Matt Baker visits Queen Victoria’s beloved country retreat, Osborne House on the Isle of Wight, where preparations for the celebrations are well underway. Ellie Harrison finds out about the rebellious Victorian women’s cycling clubs. John Craven delves into Darwin’s theory of sexual selection and his issues with the flamboyant peacock. Margherita Taylor takes a microscopic view of the Victorian obsession with science and the ordering of nature, Adam Henson meets the dairy farmer who overcame adversity to realise his dream, and Tom Heap looks at the impact of bringing Britain’s biggest bird of prey back to our skies.

54 minutes

Last on

Tue 28 May 2019 02:35

Osborne House

Osborne House

Matt's visiting the Isle of Wight and a landscape truly fit for a queen!

Osborne House was Queen Victoria’s beloved country retreat. And this week marks 200 years since her birth.

And Matt sees for himself how conservationists are making sure everything is ready to celebrate the big day...


Sea Eagles' Landing?

Sea Eagles' Landing?

Sea eagles became extinct in the UK in the early twentieth century. 

But a reintroduction programme in Scotland has been hugely successful and there are now more than 100 pairs, which have proved a real attraction for tourists.  

Now controversial plans to re-establish this top predator on the Isle of Wight have been approved.

But, as Tom investigates, not everyone is keen on the return of Britain’s biggest bird of prey. 

He meets Scottish farmers who say the eagles are responsible for attacks on their livestock...

Bikes and Bloomers

Bikes and Bloomers

Ellie’s in Shropshire finding out about the rebellious Victorian female cyclists - and how they revolutionised women’s clothing.

She takes a step back through time at Blists Hill Victorian Town in Shropshire to meet Dr Kat Jungnickel.

Kat's a sociologist from Goldsmith’s University who’s been studying the dawn of female cycling – a project she’s called ‘Bikes and Bloomers'.


Dairy Dream

Dairy Dream

Adam's up with the lark in south Devon to share a day-in-the-life with a young farmer who overcame adversity to realise his dream. 

Oliver Lee has just started out in dairy – one of the most challenging sectors in farming. 

As well as milking his rented pedigree Ayrshire herd (with an up-cycled milking parlour he found in a hedge in Exeter!), Oliver also processes and delivers the milk to his customers. 

But, in an industry that more than 400 producers left in the last six months alone, Adam finds out the remarkable story that made Oliver jump in with both feet!

Peacocks

Peacocks

The Victorians were known for their fascination with nature and the great outdoors.

And there’s one bird in particular that captured their imagination – the peacock!

But famous naturalist Charles Darwin was not so keen – in fact, they caused him a lot of anguish.

In 1860, he wrote to a friend that ‘just the sight of a feather makes me sick!’ 

John visits Spetchley Park Gardens in Worcestershire with Darwin expert Hannah Farley to find out why! 

Credits

Role Contributor
Presenter Matt Baker
Presenter Ellie Harrison
Presenter John Craven
Presenter Margherita Taylor
Presenter Adam Henson
Presenter Tom Heap
Executive Producer William Lyons
Series Producer Joanna Brame

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