The Worst Jobs in History

Episode Guides

In this five-part series, Tony Robinson sheds light on how a previously unsung army of workers shaped the world as we know it

About the Show

In this five-part series, Tony Robinson sheds light on how a previously unsung army of workers shaped the world as we know it

  • Tony Robinson carrying hay

    Rural jobs

    The Worst Rural Jobs in History: Tony samples life as a shepherd boy, nettle harvester, reddleman, thresher, chaff-box boy, sedge cutter, sin eater, pole man and lead-white maker.

  • Tony Robinson as a lifeboatman

    Maritime jobs

    The Worst Maritime Jobs in History: Tony Robinson is all at sea as liar, underdog, midshipman, fusée-chain maker, flying man, lighthouse builder and Victorian lifeboat man.

  • Tony Robinson

    Industrial jobs

    Tony Robinson experiences the worst jobs from the Industrial Revolution, including those of the bridge-builder, soap-boiler, glass-blower, knocker-upper and saggar-maker's bottom knocker.

  • Tony Robinson

    Royal jobs

    The Worst Royal Jobs in History: Tony Robinson explores a variety of horrid regal tasks from the past, including the purple dyer, who extracted the colour by rotting shellfish in urine.

  • Tony Robinson

    Urban jobs

    The Worst Urban Jobs in History: Tony Robinson explores life in the underbelly of our past times, including the back-breaking job of the water caddy and the vile role of the pure collector.

  • Tony Robinson

    Worst Christmas Jobs in History

    Tony Robinson slides down the festive career ladder to investigate the worst Christmas jobs in history, from the weird and wonderful to the dangerous and disgusting

The Worst Jobs in History synopsis

In this five-part series, Tony Robinson sheds light on how a previously unsung army of workers shaped the world as we know it

Episode Guide >

Our Picks Tonight

See all TV listings