Illuminating series on electrification

In: Uncategorized

13 Nov 2010

Although many television documentaries are uninteresting there are a few, often almost hidden, gems. The BBC’s three part series on the Secret Life of the National Grid was fascinating. It was revealing both about the importance of electricity in modern society and as a perspective to view social developments more generally.

In general terms the programme looked at the creation of Britain’s national grid from 1926 onwards, its impact on production and consumption, and the debate over its control. The latter involved both a look at the industrial disputes of the 1970s and 1980s as well as the rise of environmentalism.

For those in Britain the programme is still available to watch on BBC iPlayer until Tuesday evening. The same team that created this series also made “the secret life of the motorway” and “the secret life of the airport” .