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A303: Highway to the Sun
Tuesday 11pm - 12am
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BBC4 pootles happily towards self-parody with this fusty curio. Travellers heading from south-east England to the south west can, if they lack imagination, take the regimented M4 and M5; the fruity alternative is the A303, a bending, undulating thoroughfare that’s studded with sites of historical interest if you know where to look.
The man to show you is Tom Fort, with his damp overcoat and cream Morris Minor 1000. The varied delights of the 303 – burial mounds, battlegrounds, Stonehenge, caffs, roadkill – create a quirky sort of magazine format. It’s flat, old-fashioned and rather pleasing, like a nice pint of English ale.
Tom Fort travels along the 92-mile-long A303 from the Hampshire town of Basingstoke to Honiton in Devon. Originally designed in the 1960s, the route has been the subject of many proposed upgrades - several of which were strongly opposed due to their potential impact on sites of historic and natural significance, including Stonehenge. The programme charts the highway's turbulent history, as well as examining the development of the region over the past 5,000 years.
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