The Music of Time
During the nineteenth century, Britain was the first industrial nation and ruled a vast overseas empire. This enormous source of economic power needed military power to defend it. The British Army fought on every continent during the Nineteenth century, whether against Britain’s great power rivals in Europe, or against further-flung opponents in or around Britain’s colonial possessions in Africa, Asia and elsewhere. The French, Russians, Boers and Zulus were just a few of the army’s opponents.
The British Army was a volunteer force, drawing men from all sections of society. It faced many challenges of cohesion and organization, but discipline and drill, effective leadership, propaganda, and above all a sense of comradeship welded its men together in battle. Over the century’s course, the wars the British Army waged went from huge-scale, set-piece European battles to fast-moving colonial bush warfare. Its uniforms changed from resplendent coats and shako hats to khaki battle dress and tropical helmets, and its weapons ranged from the musket to the machine gun.
The story of the British soldier during the nineteenth century is presented through snapshots of soldiers’ lives from the Napoleonic Wars (1798-1815) to the Boer War in South Africa (1899-1902); through readings by Richard Burton, Roger Moore and Rupert Penry-Jones; and through music including folk, rock, pop, swing and soundtrack – by the likes of ABBA, Thin Lizzy, Kate Rusby, John Barry and Frank Sinatra.
The story also benefits from expert insight by our special guest historian, Dr Annie Tindley of the University of Dundee!16:00 - 18:00