England is a country stuffed full of history. From the Stone Age to the Nuclear Age there are thousands of inspirational sites that have helped to shape the past and present.
Join Dan Snow on an epic road trip, from Stonehenge in Wiltshire to the Cold War Bunker in York. He’ll be racing across the country exploring some key places in the care of English Heritage, where you can feel the heartbeat of history!
In episode one Dan begins in the Stone Age at the enigmatic and inspiring Stonehenge. With curator Heather Sebire, Dan investigates who created this incredible structure and why. We then jump a few hundred years forward to the Iron Age stronghold of Old Sarum, a defensive and civic centre spanning two thousand years of history - right through to the Normans. The next stop is a big one, 1066. We can’t do a history of England without one of the most significant battles of the medieval period, the Battle of Hastings, where English and European history would change in a day, on a hillside in Sussex.
After William the Conqueror and his Normans defeated the Anglo-Saxons, they needed strong defensive structures to keep their people under control and fend off invasion, so they built castles, first in wood and then in stone. So Dan's next stop is to the site of one of England's most strategic fortresses, powerful (and surprisingly luxurious) Dover Castle. At Dover, Dan discovers the colourful world of a 12th century castle and Historian and Dover Castle expert Marc Morris explains how this mighty castle was used 800 years ago.
Hundreds of miles, thousands of years of history…one road trip!
We filmed this series with English Heritage - have a look their website for more information on these amazing places
In part two we’ll be hurtling towards the Tudors, a daring princely escape in the Civil War and the big bang of the 18th century, the industrial revolution.