Program 334: Pastoral Britain

Release Date: 08-03-2013


Expert guides from southern England chat with Rick and take listener calls about their favorite parts of rural Britain. They'll recommend where to enjoy off-the-beaten-path pastoral landscapes, complete with thatched roof cottages, abbeys and castles, coastal lookouts, and even wild ponies.


Tour guides Gillian Chadwick and Roy Nichols, based in southern England

Related Links

  • The South Downs is the region where Gillian lives, near the village of Ditchling, which is home to legendary singer Dame Vera Lynn
  • The Thomas Hardy Society defines Thomas Hardy Country as centering around Wessex in England.  Roy lives nearby in the region called Dorset
  • Rick writes about Bath, England as a good place to access Roman and Medieval history, and for excursions into the English countryside.
  • John Constable was a 19th century painter who depicted the pastoral scenery of his home region of Suffolk.
  • James Harriot was a pen name of James Alfred Wight, who wrote popular fiction about the adventures of a North Yorkshire veterinarian, which were made into the popular BBC-TV series "All Creatures Great and Small" in the 1980s.   The region is getting to be known as "James Harriot Country."
  • "Wordsworth Country," where the 19th century poet William Wordsworth lived, is also in the Lake District of Cumbria.
  • "Downton Abbey" country centers on the Highclere Estate in Newbury, in the West Berkshires.  
  • The National Trust has photographs of the Ditchling Beacon that Gillian mentions as among her favorite places in Britain. 
  • Google has a large number of photographs of Bulbarrow Hill in Dorset, which Roy mentions as among his favorite places.
  • The British band, Half Man Half Biscuit, refers to Dorset's Bulbarrow Hill in their song, "Third Track Main Camera Four Minutes," on their 2000 album called "Trouble Over Bridgwater."
  • Caller Lisa took her family to Warwick Castle in Warwickshire. 
  • Caller Jennifer enjoyed listening to BBC Radio Scotland's Gaelic language station, Radio Nan Gaidheal, when driving in the Outer Hebrides of Scotland.    She also endured an eight hour boat ride over rough seas to see the seabirds and wild sheep on the remote island of St. Kilda.
  • Caller Kate visited the Edradour whisky distillery, Scotland's smallest one, north of Pitlochry.

Program Extras

Program 334 Extra - Roy Nichols and Gillian Chadwick talk with Rick about the ancient chalk hills that give a distinctive look to the southern coast of England, such as the “white cliffs of Dover” that Vera Lynn famously sang about during the World War Two era, and the many chalk figures that decorate the cliffs. (runs 2:29)