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The Story of England
Unlike any before it, this was not the story of Kings and Queens and Lords and Ladies, but a history of ordinary people as told
through collections of old documents and memories. The series was based around the ancient parish of Kibworth in the Gartree
hundred, which today comprises three villages: Kibworth Harcourt, Kibworth Beauchamp and Smeeton Westerby.
The project began for the villages on a weekend in July 2009 with the Big Dig, organised by Michael’s production company (Maya
Vision International) and co-ordinated by Dr Carenza Lewis, who, with local archaeologists, worked alongside over 150 volunteers to
dig 55 one metre square test pits in their gardens and recorded everything they found as they worked their way back through time to
the Roman period. One of the pits, dug in the corner of the car park of The Coach & Horses pub on the A6, where the team
were based throughout the weekend, produced one of the most interesting artefacts – a tiny fragment of bone comb from the Dark
Moving between the national and the local narratives, Michael and the production team filmed until October 2010 to set the lives of
the ordinary people from the three villages in the context of great events: from the Viking invasions and the Norman Conquest to the
Industrial Revolution and the two World Wars. Fittingly, the series finished in September 2010 with the burial of a time capsule in The
Coach & Horses’ car park by Michael Wood and the pub landlord, Andrew Southerden.
Kibworth started on this journey in July 2009 with the 'Kibworth Dig'
where many of our villagers dug up their own gardens to find more
information on the history of the village and the ordinary people who
Mayavsion began a major 6 part television series which has delved into
the history of our village and its people over more than a thousand
The final event was the burying of a time capsule in the car park of the
Coach & Horses on 12th September 2010.
Both the book and DVD of Michael Wood’s story of England are
You can see more video
clips and find out more
about the series by
“Kibworth! But why Kibworth?” was the perplexed tone down the line from Radio Leicester.
An ordinary place on the A6 with Chinese and Indian takeaways, a co-op, and housing
estates, you’d drive through it without a second look. But perhaps that is the point. Story of
England is based on a very simple idea: to tell the story of one place through the whole of
English history, from Anglo-Saxons and Vikings to the Suffragettes, the Somme and D-Day,
with the people, not the rulers at the centre of the story......