Authentic voices from the past illustrate this unique history of the twentieth century, written by Joanna Bourke and presented by Tim Pigott-Smith.
Eyewitness provides a rare and fascinating opportunity to hear the events of the century described by those who saw them happen. A wealth of BBC archive recordings, some never previously broadcast, is interwoven with an illuminating commentary by the historian Joanna Bourke. Published in ten volumes, Eyewitness examines the role and the life of the British people in each decade of the century.
In 1951, the Festival of Britain celebrated a more egalitarian and peaceful society. Nevertheless young men were still called on to fight as conflicts erupted in Malaya, Korea, Cyprus and Suez. Then, as the nuclear threat increased, protestors took to the streets and CND was born.
This was the era of Angry Young Men, literate rebels against the old order: also of the Teddy Boy, creator of distinctive fashion, but representing a culture of violence and discrimination as seen in the Notting Hill race riots. Rock-and-roll caused riots of a different kind but produced Britain’s first true pop stars.
Alan Sillitoe, John Osborne, Joan Bakewell, Tommy Steele and Cliff Richard recall aspects of the decade, as do National Servicemen, Teddy Boys and the black community of Notting Hill.
Thought-provoking and moving, these are the voices of the past, speaking to the present.