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Sunday, 29 July 2012

The People Who Forged A Mighty Empire

I’m not normally a fan of huge song-and-dance numbers, but I really enjoyed watching Lancashire-born Danny Boyle’s epic tribute in the Olypic opening ceremony to the workers of the industrial revolution. I loved the spectacle of the mill chimneys rising into the air, and the miners coming up out of the ground, and the workers forging the Olympic rings.

Ideally I would have liked to see some child workers in there for authenticity, and a Luddites reference as it’s the bicentenary, but these are just minor points really. I thought that Boyle’s celebration of Britain’s history and literature was absolutely brilliant. 

Illustrations from author’s collection:
Making coke, Burnley. Engraving by T. Riley for Grindon’s Lancashire.

Nasmyth’s Steam Hammer, Discoveries and Inventions of the Nineteenth Century, Robert Routledge, (Routledge & Sons, 1901)

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