The National Archives Podcast SeriesAuthor: The National Archives
24 Jun 2017

The National Archives Podcast Series

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Listen to talks, lectures and other events presented by The National Archives of the United Kingdom.

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    'A Bit of a Scratch', a radio drama about the battle against Venereal Disease during the First World War

    'A Bit of a Scratch' explores the first recorded prosecution under the Venereal Diseases Act 1917. The legislation was introduced due to the large numbers, roughly 5%, of UK troops returning from the First World War with venereal diseases and to ensure that treatment was undertaken by qualified medical professionals. The last century has seen remarkable developments in sexual health, however with rising numbers of sexually transmitted infections and the emergence of antimicrobial resistant disease, the provision of high quality sexual health services are more important than ever.

    This podcast was produced jointly with the British Association for Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH). More information on the issues contained within this podcast can be found on the BASHH website and @BASHH_UK.

    By: Debbie Manship

    Cast (in order of appearance):

    • Narrator: Stephen McGann
    • Billy: Louis Cardona
    • Edie: Lowri Amies
    • Chemist: David Jarvis
    • Doctor: Peter Wickham
    • All other parts were played by members of the cast.
    • Composer: Chris Madin
    • Studio Engineer: Holly Parris
    • Director: Paul Dawson

    Produced by Role Call and iD Audio in association with M & F Health Communications"The British Army's fight against Venereal Disease in the 'Heroic Age of Prostitution'" by Richard Marshall is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0


  • Posted on 16 Jun 2017

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    Medieval treason and magic

    In this podcast, two of our records specialists tell us about treason and necromancy in The National Archives' medieval records.

    The first part, narrated by Paul Dryburgh, tells the story of a band of men from Coventry who planned to kill King Edward II and his supporters, the Despencers, with a plot that involved wax effigies and pins. In the second part, Sean Cunningham discusses one of the earliest English language statements in legal history; a tale involving a mole catcher and a magical dismembered hand.


  • Posted on 15 Jun 2017

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    'Dadland': the father who was also an undercover guerrilla agent

    Keggie Carew discusses her book 'Dadland', a story about a madcap English childhood, the poignant breakdown of a family, and dementia. The novel centres upon her father Tom Carew, an enigmatic, unorthodox character, who was an undercover guerrilla agent during the Second World War.

    'Dadland' is the winner of the Costa Biography Award 2016 and a Sunday Times Top Ten Bestseller.


  • Posted on 18 May 2017

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    Black British politics and the anti-apartheid struggle

    In 1948, from the introduction of apartheid in South Africa, racial discrimination galvanized the international community into protest. British people and black communities in particular attempted to lead the global opposition against apartheid.

    Historian Dr Elizabeth Williams (Goldsmiths, University of London) will discuss aspects of the documents she looked at while writing her book 'The Politics of Race in Britain and South Africa: Black British Solidarity and the Apartheid Struggle' (2015).

    Please note, due to a technical error this recording ended a few minutes prior to the end of the talk.


  • Posted on 25 Apr 2017

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    From the Somme to Arras

    Andrew Lock discusses the progress made by the British Expeditionary Forces between the battles of the Somme (1916) and Arras (1917). Although lessons were learned during the Somme campaign, Arras clearly exposed command and preparation deficiencies, leading to setbacks and the highest casualty rate of any British offensive in the war.


  • Posted on 18 Apr 2017

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