BBC to screen Antiques Roadshow episode filmed at Portchester Castle

PORTCHESTER Castle will star in the Antiques Roadshow when the popular show airs tonight.

Monday, 7th February 2022, 12:52 pm
Updated Sunday, 13th February 2022, 5:34 pm

The episode, due to be broadcast on BBC One at 7pm, will see Fiona Bruce and the team of experts travel to the south coast, to discover a host of treasures including Battle of Britain medals, valuable Indian paintings, and rare punk clothing by fashion designer Vivienne Westwood.

Filming took place in autumn 2021, and saw people with interesting objects invited to the English Heritage castle to share their stories.

As part of the programme viewers will see Fiona explore a little-known chapter in the history of Portchester Castle. Joined by English Heritage Curator Samantha Stones, the presenter will find out about the castle’s role as a prisoner of war camp in the late 18th century, when it was home to freed slaves from the Caribbean who had fought for France and been captured by the British.

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Wheeling away one of the exhibits at the end of filming for the BBC's Antiques Roadshow at Portchester Castle on October 1, 2021. By Trev Harman

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Jenny Snook, property manager at Portchester Castle, said: ‘It was wonderful to welcome the Antiques Roadshow to Portchester Castle last year for two unforgettable days of filming.

‘We loved seeing so many local people invited to show their treasures to the experts, and I’m really looking forward to see what gems were discovered.

‘The castle is a local landmark, and the whole team here can’t wait to see it take a starring role this weekend.’

Portchester Castle has played a role in the defences of the Solent for hundreds of years – its remarkable history begins in the 3rd century AD when the Romans built a vast fort on the site, before transforming into a 5th century Saxon settlement and later, after the Conquest of 1066, it became a Norman castle.

From 1665 Portchester served as a prisoner-of-war camp – a role that reached its height during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic wars of 1793–1815, when it housed up to 8,000 prisoners, of many nationalities and backgrounds, at any one time.

The castle is cared for by English Heritage, and open to the public to explore and discover at weekends through the winter – and all week for February half term from February 19 to 27.

Full opening times and booking are available at english-heritage.org.uk/portchester.

Further details can be found at bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0014jgf.

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