Ditch-crawler’s flirtation with television … BBC2 Britain Afloat

Some while ago I did some filming with the BBC for a programme to be titled, a Floating History of Britain. This has materialised upon completion and immanent screening into ‘Britain Afloat’.

The programme brief was to describe the history in brief of various vessels and look at the way they had survived with new purposes after working lives had finished. Essentially, all have now become ‘play things’ but in respect to the spritsail barge, it became something more for many decades – floating/sailing homes too.

It was the floating home aspect the BBC were interested in when talking to me for the filming, plus a simplified history.

Mary Ann Ochota and me aboard Ardwina.

I was asked about many aspects of my childhood afloat with my siblings, what we got up to and what we had to do. There were ‘history’ questions and finally what the area meant to me which led me onto waterfront change – the theme in Rochester to Richmond: A Thames Estuary Sailor’s View. The book link is: http://fonthillmedia.com/9781781556207

Eventually during the early afternoon the Ardwina departed with the TV crew aboard for Greenwich where a charter party was to embark – I was then involved in what seemed a frenetic number of takes about the river…

Talking specifically about the childhood ‘we’ (my siblings and I) had aboard the May Flower over the course of three decades.

Ardwina on the Thames bound for Greenwich.

The programme begins on Saturday 30th September 2017. BBC2 2000 – 2030. There are some regional differences. See these links:




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