We are all looking forward to the very delayed (!) start of the new series of Who Do You Think You Are? on the BBC.
We had been expecting it to start, as usual in August…then we were told it would be after the Olympics. Well it certainly is after the Olympics as it is kicking off with the first programme on Thursday 24th November. This show promises to be a fascinating look at Cockney actor Danny Dyer and his connection to a man at the heart of the Tudor court of Henry VIII who lost his influence and his head when he fell out with the king.
The Sir Derek George Jacobi’s story on Who Do You Think You Are? was one of equal contrasts. Though we found out that he is from working class roots in London, with a boot maker for a grandfather, as we delved further back in time we discovered that his family are from much grander stock, one having mixed with Louis the Sun King until his religious belief had him imprisoned and he escaped to England.
Sir Derek’s ancestor was Joseph de la Plaigne, a financier and French Protestant from Bordeaux who had to conceal his religious beliefs from his monarch in order to remain in favour with the Catholic Louis XIV. In 1701 de la Plaigne was found out to be a Protestant and incarcerated in prison at Loches in the Loire Valley. Making his escape he, like many Huguenots, made his way to England.
In 1708, at the age of 70 and living in England, Joseph de la Plaigne married Salome de la Bastide. Researchers have found that the wedding took place on the 7th August at St. Mary Magdalene, Old Fish Street, London. The couple’s son, Guillaume, was born soon after this with his christening taking place on the 28th May 1709. The now elderly Joseph died not a long time later and researchers from TheGenealogist website have been able to find his will in the Prerogative Court of Canterbury Wills collection accessible on TheGenealogist where if you are a subscriber you will be able to search for images of the actual Wills that had been lodged with the PCC for probate. In de la Plaigne’s case the document shows that Joseph was born at Bordeaux and was living in the Parish of St Anne’s, Westminster when he made the will.
To see a copy of the will and to read TheGenealogist’s full article on Sir Derek Jacobi’s family history click this link. TheGenealogist website has a broad suite of resources to find ancestors in the records.
The next episode of ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ continues tonight on BBC1 at 9pm. The celebrity featured this week is a star of Eastenders and numerous films, Nitin Ganatra. He moved with his family to the UK from Kenya when he was aged 3, so tonight’s programme has a real international feel to it covering both Africa and Asia as Nitin pieces together his family tree.
It promises to be another interesting episode. I’ve enjoyed the series so far, with both personal, emotional and historic family history journeys featuring in the series so far. The Nick Hewer feature last week had some interesting historical elements and tonight’s show looks like being similar. Will you be watching?
Last night’s episode featuring Gary Lineker focused on just 2 main characters- Thomas Billingham and James Pratt and their paths through life which went in very different directions.
Whilst Tom received a ‘lucky break’ from his gardener father’s wealthy employer, who paid for his education, James Pratt struggled throughout his life with no real change in his luck. With a big family to feed and employment very difficult to find, James had to turn to poaching to put food on the table.
The programme really highlighted the struggles of life in Victorian England and also the opportunities (particularly in London) that could open up if you had that bit of help!
Episode 4 of Who Do You Think You Are? continues tonight on BBC1 at 9pm with actress Lesley Sharp. Widely acclaimed star of films such as The Full Monty, Vera Drake and the Scott and Bailey TV Series, she has played many varied roles. Adopted at just six weeks old, the show promises to discover the family of her birth father whom she knew so little about.
As well as Lesley’s own adoption, the programme also covers her great great grandfather and his work taking in Barnardo’s children. Although not a wealthy man, he looked after a number of children before they were shipped to Canada to work as farm hands and provide much needed labour for Canadian farmers.
It promises to be an other fascinating episode in an excellent series so far. Will you be watching?
The excellent series of ‘Who Do You Think You Are? continues on BBC1 tonight, featuring Hollywood actress and singer songwriter, Minnie Driver. Born Amelia Fiona Driver in 1970, Minnie has had a successful film and TV career, appearing in a number of roles. Her family history also maps out like a script from a film with a number of unexpected events! Her father and grandfather both led double lives and her father also became a reluctant war hero after his exploits at the Battle of Heligoland Bight in 1939. It promises to be a very interesting programme.
TheGenealogist has done some initial research into Minnie’s family history, so if you’d like a snapshot before the show please visit their website.
The second episode of the popular series ‘Who Do You Think You Are?’ continues tonight on BBC1 at 9pm. Featuring actor Nigel Havers, it promises to be another great episode after the emotional and ‘coincidental’ journey of Una Stubbs last week.
Nigel Havers has played many upper class roles over the years and it was assumed his family history would produce a long line of aristocratic characters. However, despite his immediate family consisting of a number of high profile, successful legal professionals, it appears Nigel comes from a family of far more humble origins!
TheGenealogist has looked into his background if you’d like to know more before the show tonight. The featured article can be found here.
Don’t forget the new series of Who Do You Think You Are? starts tonight! It’s at 9pm on BBC1 with what promises to be a great first episode on Una Stubbs. The link between Una and one of the founders of two new towns in Hertfordshire promises to be one of a number of interesting family history stories. Will you be watching?
The first episode starts this Wednesday on BBC1 of Who Do You Think You Are? and it’s eagerly anticipated by family historians throughout the UK. The first celebrity, Una Stubbs has an emotional journey, that features both estranged families and a look at a visionary ancestor who was instrumental in designing some of the England’s new towns of the early 1900s.
TheGenealogist has a feature on Una Stubbs in their ‘Featured Articles’ section and you can view it here.
The date for the first episode of series 10 of Who Do You Think You Are? has now been formally released by the BBC. It’s scheduled for Wednesday 24 July and will feature famous actress Una Stubbs.
Welwyn Garden City, in Hertfordshire, is central to her story, particularly as it’s the new town that was originally founded by her great grandfather, Sir Ebenezer Howard, who also founded Letchworth Garden City as part of his plans for more comfortable and pleasant town living.
It should be the start of a great series, will you be watching?