M1 - The Modernist Marvel

Episodes

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2009110420160401 (BBC7)
20160402 (BBC7)
20190722 (BBC7)
20190723 (BBC7)

Poet and musician John Hegley shares his reflections on Britain's first major motorway which opened in 1959, with a poetic meditation.

With his mandolin in tow, John slows down, turns off and seeks out the overlooked sights and sounds of the M1 - the 200-mile stretch of road that's the transport backbone of Britain.

John learns why there is no Junction 3, discovers how a scientific formula for loo breaks determined how far apart service stations should be built, and admires the road for the glimpse on the modern world it offers us.

Producer: Simon Jacobs

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in November 2009.

Poet John Hegley reflects on the M1, Britain's first motorway in 1959. From 2009.

Poet and musician John Hegley shares his reflections on Britain's first major motorway which opened in 1959, with a poetic meditation.

Poet John Hegley reflects on the M1, Britain's first motorway in 1959. From 2009.

Poet John Hegley reflects on the M1, Britain's first motorway in 1959. From 2009.

John Hegley presents a poetic meditation on the M1, the transport backbone of Britain.

As the M1, Britain's first major motorway, celebrates its 50th year, performance poet and musician John Hegley presents a poetic meditation on the 200-mile stretch of road that is the transport backbone of Britain.

With his mandolin in tow, John slows down, turns off and seeks out the overlooked sights and sounds of the M1. He learns why there is no Junction 3, discovers that there was a scientific formula to the loo break that determined how far apart service stations should be built, and admires the road for the glimpse on the modern world it offers us.