Archaeologist, historian, conservationist, author and broadcaster, Neil Oliver is best known as presenter of the BBC documentary series, A History Of Scotland, Vikings and, most prominently, Coast.

The Story Of The British Isles In 100 Places is his personal account of what makes these islands so special, told through places which have borne witness to the unfolding of our history.

To Neil, this archipelago of islands is the best place in the world, cradling astonishing beauty. The human story here is a million years old, and counting. But the tolerant, easy-going peace we have enjoyed has been hard won. We have made and known the best and worst of times. We have been hero and villain and all else in between, and we have learned some lessons.

Beginning with footprints in the sand from humankind’s earliest ancestors, he takes us via Romans and Vikings, the flowering of religion, through civil war, industrial revolution and two world wars. From windswept headlands to battlefields and ancient trees to magnificent cathedrals - each of his destinations is a place where, somehow, the spirit of the past seems to linger.

Oliver says: “I have chosen what I consider to be the most characteristic features of the face I have grown up to know and love… fundamental to an understanding of the long, slow shaping of the British Isles we live in today. In this present climate of public fear, disagreement and uncertainty about the future, I think it is timely to look again at the past, the story of this place from its earliest times.”

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