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Dig WWII-related round-up

Saturday, July 2nd, 2011

From express.co.uk:

This week a team of archaeologists began to recover his wrecked plane for a series to be shown on the BBC next year. But presenter Dan Snow acknowledges that the truly unique element of the story is the camp in County Kildare to which Wolfe was taken by the Irish authorities. “It was not just the British and their allies who got lost above and around Ireland,” he says. “German sailors from destroyed U-boats and Luftwaffe aircrew also found themselves interned. The juxtaposition of the two sides made for surreal drama.” The Curragh, a wide plain west of Dublin, had been used as a military muster area and training ground for centuries.

From dailyrecord.co.uk:

Neutral Historian Dan Snow said: “It’s incredible because it’s just so wet here that the ground just sucked it up and the plane burrowed into it and it’s been preserved.”

From drogheda-independent.ie:

Historian Dan Snow said: “The plane itself is obviously kind of wreckage and the big pieces survived. We’re expecting to find things like the engine and there still may be personal effects in the cockpit.

“It’s just incredible because it’s just so wet here that the ground just sucked it up and the plane was able to burrow into it and it’s been preserved.

“It’s in amazing condition,” he told RTE radio.

Mr Snow said Mr Wolf was forced to abandon his Spitfire over the Republic when its engine overheated about 13 miles from his base at RAF Eglinton, now Derry International Airport, in Northern Ireland.

Other articles:

Spitfire diaries: The strange life in Dublin’s PoW camp

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

From here:

This week I will accompany them with a BBC television crew and record what we hope will be substantial pieces of wreckage emerging from the bog. The bog defeated the attempt in 1941 to gather up the wreckage, so there should be plenty of Spitfire down there, but it may well defeat us.

The Eagle Squadrons allowed Americans to fight before the US entered the war The digger has to sit on bog mats, big railway sleepers, to spread its 20-ton weight. But even they may not be enough to stop it sinking in. There is also a danger that the hole will simply fill with water or the sides cave in.

It is one of the most difficult excavations that an experienced team have ever faced. Whatever happens, I will be updating Twitter minute-by-minute as the excavation takes place.

Hopefully we will find the physical evidence that will shine a light on the events of that November night 70 years ago and also provide us with a connection to one of the most bizarre moments of the war

Dan Snow is following today’s attempt to recover Bud Wolfe’s Spitfire in Co Donegal and will be posting updates via the Twitter account @DigWW2.


Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Dan will be on Newsnight tonight with a number of other guests where the topic looks to be next week’s AV referendum.

Newsnight will be on BBC2 at 10.30pm

Filthy Cities – Industrial New York

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

From here:
Tue 19 Apr 2011 – 21:00 – BBC Two (except N. Ireland (Analogue), Wales (Analogue))
Tue 19 Apr 2011 – 21:00 – BBC HD
Wed 20 Apr 2011 – 00:00 – BBC HD

Dan Snow travels back to a seething Manhattan in the throes of the industrial revolution. Millions fled persecution, poverty and famine in Europe in the 19th century in search of the Promised Land. When they arrived what they found was even worse than what they’d left behind.

New York was a city consumed by filth and corruption, its massive immigrant population crammed together in the slums of Lower Manhattan. Dan succumbs to some of the deadly disease-carrying parasites that thrived in the filthy, overcrowded tenement buildings. He has a go at cooking with some cutting edge 19th century ingredients – clothes dye and floor cleaner – added to disguise reeking fetid meat. And he marvels at some of the incredible feats of engineering that transformed not just the city, but the world.

Some clips:
Clip 1
Clip 2
Click to continue »

Filthy Cities on Tonight!

Tuesday, April 12th, 2011

Don’t forget, the next episode of Filthy Cities is on BBC2 at 9pm tonight!

Another clip from the episode.
Click to continue »

Dan on the BBC TV Blog

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

Dan wrote an entry for the BBC TV Blog on his series Filthy Cities:

When the BBC got in touch with me and suggested a series about the history of filth I was suitably nervous.

In Filthy Cities, they wanted a series which explored the idea that we humans create a huge amount of waste that, if left untreated, can destroy us.
Click to continue »

YouTube – One Man, One Street, 6 Tonnes of Muck! – Filthy Cities – Episode 1 – BBC Two

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

YouTube – One Man, One Street, 6 Tonnes of Muck! – Filthy Cities – Episode 1 – BBC Two.

A clip from the last episode.

Filthy Cities – Revolutionary Paris

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

From here:
Tue 12 Apr 2011 – 21:00 -BBC 2 (except N. Ireland (Analogue), Wales (Analogue))
Tue 12 Apr 2011 – 21:00 – BBC HD
Wed 13 Apr 2011 – 00:00 – BBC HD
Dan Snow
Just 200 years ago, Paris was famously one of the foulest and smelliest cities in Europe. In this programme historian Dan Snow sniffs out the rotten story of the French revolution.

Stunning CGI reveals the stinking streets where ordinary people slaved in toxic industries and suffered grotesque poverty and disease. Dan immerses himself in their world, visiting a perfumer to recreate the stench of the 18th century city – Pong de Paris. He has a go at one of the worst jobs in history – tanning leather by 18th century methods using dog excrement and urine – to make exquisite luxury goods that only the filthy rich could afford.

He gets a rare glimpse of the private rooms of infamous Queen Marie Antoinette at the glittering palace of Versailles and reveals some surprising facts about the royal court. Plus he comes face to face with the ultimate killing machine – the gruesome guillotine. Dan finds out what happened to the thousands of bodies that overflowed in the cemeteries of Paris during The Terror.

Dan discovers how monumental filth and injustice drove Parisians to a bloody revolution which would transform their city and give birth to a new republic.

Filthy Cities – Medieval London

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

From here:
Tues 5th April (that’s TODAY!!!)

Also on:
Weds 6th April – 0.00am – BBC HD
Thurs 7th April – 11.20pm – BBC 2 (England, Scotland, Wales only)
Fri 8th April – 00.20am – BBC2 (Northern Ireland only)
Dan dressed in protective gear ready to visit the sewers

Historian Dan Snow gets down and dirty in Medieval grime to discover the hard way how the London we know was forged in the filth of the 14th century.

State of the art CGI reveals London’s streets as they were 700 years ago and Dan steps into the shoes of a medieval Londoner – wooden platforms designed to help him rise above the disgusting mess underfoot. He spends the night as a medieval muck-raker shifting a staggering six tonnes of excrement, and has a go at medieval butchery to find out what the authorities were up against.

Plus, he examines the remains of a plague victim to discover how a catastrophic epidemic would help a new and cleaner London emerge from the muck of the past.
Click to continue »

Filthy Cities Mini Round-Up

Tuesday, April 5th, 2011

Bit slacking on the site LOADS for the last few months, life seems to have gotten in the way, but here’s a mini round up:

  • BBC Filthy Cities mini site
  • Do you have to dodge the contents of bedpans or step over rotting corpses on your way to work? Well, you may have had to if you’d lived in London, New York or Paris back when they were filthy cities. In this immersive new series Dan Snow brings these cities’ stinking histories vividly to life from the bottom up. Taking the travelogue in a whole new direction – with extraordinary, hands-on demos and stunts and revolutionary CGI – he excavates the murky past in gruesome detail during defining periods in history. You’ll find out how each of these modern capitals was forged in the muck of the past, emerging from ‘filthy cities’ into three of the world’s model metropolises.

  • Filthy Graphics – video revealing how the Filthy Cities series was brought to life using computer graphics and special effects.
  • Dan Snow’s Dirty Words and Filthy Phrases