Walking Through History: Northumbria

Walking Through History: Northumbria

Series 3



For those of us who haven’t been there, it can be hard to grasp the scale of big Scottish sporting estates. Tony Robinson walks across three of them for this 2014 info-stroll, remarking that they put their English equivalents to shame: “These guys own whole mountain ranges!” 

The sweeping emptiness of the Cairngorms owes something to the grim history of Highland clearances, of course, but also to the impact of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, who visited for a holiday in 1844 and helped transform the area into “the beating heart of brand Scotland”.

Robinson follows in their footsteps and sketches how they helped change attitudes to the Highlands for ever.


Tony Robinson explores the history of the ancient kingdom on a walk from Melrose in the Scottish Borders to Holy Island off the coast of Northumberland. Over five days, he goes on the trail of one of Northumbria's greatest sons - Saint Cuthbert. Through the Tweed Valley and across the Cheviot Hills, it's a journey through a murky history laden with myth. However, by investigating the communities, power bases and landscape of seventh-century Northumbria, Tony aims to understand the pagan land in which Cuthbert spread his simple brand of Celtic Christianity.

Cast & Crew

Presenter Tony Robinson
Director Michael Waterhouse
Executive Producer Philip Clarke
Producer Michael Waterhouse
Series Producer Owen Rodd