Great British Railway Journeys arrives at Tiptree jam makers

Michael Portillo stops in at Tiptree for an episode of Great British Railway Journeys

From left, Wilkin & Sons chairman Walter Scott with Michael Portillo, who stars in Great British Railway Journeys - Credit: Wilkin & Son

The women who worked on an Essex fruit farm during the world wars will take centre-stage in a television documentary on BBC2.

Documentary-maker and train buff Michael Portillo filmed at Wilkin & Sons jam factory at Tiptree for an episode of Great British Railway Journeys which airs on Tuesday, May 4 at 6.30pm.

The company’s chairman Walter Scott expressed his delight at the visit.

“It was a great pleasure to welcome Michael Portillo and his television film crew from Great British Railway Journeys to our Tiptree Farm,” he said. 

“Their theme concerned the role of the Land Army Girls who worked the land, helping to cultivate and harvest the crops, including our fruit, thus ensuring the country was fed during the war. We filmed in our Damson orchard, the day was a great success and we are sure Mr. Portillo enjoyed his time with us.”

The Tiptree Jam Museum houses a display of photos from the war.

During the First and Second World Wars women filled the jobs left by men who had gone to fight. The Women’s Land Army was created for women to work in agriculture, and at Tiptree there were more than 40 women working on the company’s farms in the spring of 1942.