Digging for Britain

Watch Digging for Britain

  • TV-14
  • 2010
  • 7 Seasons
  • 8.1  (210)

Digging for Britain is a fascinating documentary series presented by Alice Roberts, an archaeological expert and member of the Council for British Archaeology. The show began airing in 2010 and has been available on Acorn TV since then. It explores the rich history and cultural heritage of Britain by unearthing the hidden stories beneath its soil.

The series follows Roberts and a team of experts as they investigate various historical sites across the country, from prehistoric burial mounds to Roman villas and Medieval castles. The programme aims to showcase the latest archaeological discoveries and techniques, as well as shed light on the lives of Britain’s ancestors from different periods.

Each episode of Digging for Britain covers a particular era or archaeological site, providing a comprehensive overview of the relevant history and context. For instance, the first season includes episodes on the Bronze Age, Iron Age, Roman, and Viking periods. Later seasons delve into topics such as Anglo-Saxon art, medieval warfare, and the cultural impact of the Black Death.

One of the standout features of Digging for Britain is its use of state-of-the-art technology to bring historical sites to life. The programme often employs drone footage, 3D models, and CGI recreations to show viewers what the sites might have looked like in their heyday. In addition, the experts use cutting-edge techniques such as LiDAR scanning and carbon dating to glean new insights from the artefacts they uncover.

Another strength of the show is its dedication to inclusivity and diversity. Roberts and her team frequently collaborate with underrepresented groups such as women, people of colour, and LGBTQ+ communities, to give voice to those whose stories have long been relegated to the margins of history. The show also highlights the contributions of amateur archaeologists and volunteers, reflecting the fact that the study of history is a collaborative effort.

Digging for Britain’s presentation is both accessible and engaging. Roberts is an enthusiastic and knowledgeable host, clearly passionate about her subject matter. The show is also incredibly cinematic, with stunning shots of the British countryside, evocative soundscapes, and stunning visuals that help bring the history to life.

One of the most impressive aspects of Digging for Britain is the breadth of the show. Over the course of its many seasons, the programme covers a wide range of historical periods and sites, from the prehistoric era to the present day. Whether you’re interested in Stonehenge, Hadrian’s Wall, or the Battle of Hastings, there’s something for every history buff in this series.

Of course, as with any show about history, there are some limitations to what can be explored. Digging for Britain tends to focus heavily on the physical remains of the past, rather than the social, political, and economic forces that shaped them. While this is understandable given the show’s limited scope, it can sometimes leave viewers wanting more context.

In addition, some viewers may find the format of the show repetitive. Each episode follows a similar structure, with Roberts and her team visiting a site, discussing its historical significance, and then conducting the actual excavation. While this formula is effective in showcasing the latest archaeological techniques, it can sometimes feel a bit formulaic.

Despite these minor quibbles, Digging for Britain is an excellent series for anyone interested in the history of the British Isles. The personalities of the presenters, their dedication to inclusivity and diversity, and the stunning visuals of the excavations bring history to life in engaging and enlightening ways. Whether you’re a seasoned history buff or a curious novice, this show is definitely worth digging into.

Digging for Britain is a series that is currently running and has 7 seasons (23 episodes). The series first aired on August 19, 2010.

Digging for Britain
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Digging For Britain - Episode 4
4. Digging For Britain - Episode 4
September 1, 2010
Alice Roberts follows the excavation of Iron Age Britain's most spectacular grave while a team of archaeologists in East Yorkshire have uncovered the remains of only the third upright chariot burial ever found in Britain, and the only chariot burial ever found in this country with the chariot harnessed to two standing ponies.
Where to Watch Digging for Britain
Digging for Britain is available for streaming on the Acorn TV website, both individual episodes and full seasons. You can also watch Digging for Britain on demand at Amazon Prime and Amazon.
  • Premiere Date
    August 19, 2010
  • IMDB Rating
    8.1  (210)