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Storyville: Britain—a place built on immigration

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Issue 2345

This documentary looks at the lives of immigrants who have begun life in Britain at either end of the A5 road. 

It stretches over 400 km from Holyhead in north Wales, where the Irish ferries come in, to Marble Arch in central London.

It is poignant, funny and asks what it means to belong somewhere. 

There’s Keelta, a young singer, who finds that her way has been smoothed by earlier Irish immigrants. 

There’s Peggy, who lost most of her family in the Holocaust. There are also the men who wait for jobs by the side of the road. 

Iqbal spoke of the disillusionment of coming to Britain, “When you leave your country, you lose your home twice. You lose the place you left and the place you thought the most civilised on earth,” he said. 

“Once you live there you know it cannot be true.” 

Sarah Ensor

Storyville: The Road, a story of life and death Sun 31 March, BBC4 Written and directed by Marc Isaacs

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