Radio-Lists Home Now on BBC 4

RADIO-LISTS: BBC FOUR
Unofficial Weekly Listings for BBC 4 — supported by bbc.co.uk/programmes/



SATURDAY 18 DECEMBER 2010

SAT 19:00 Life (b00pcm3h)
Primates

Primates are just like humans - intelligent, quarrelsome, family-centred.

Huge armies of Hamadryas baboons, 400 strong, battle on the plains of Ethiopia to steal females and settle old scores. Japanese macaques in Japan beat the cold by lounging in thermal springs, but only if they come from the right family. An orangutan baby fails in its struggle to make an umbrella out of leaves to keep off the rain. Young capuchins cannot quite get the hang of smashing nuts with a large rock, a technique their parents have perfected. Chimpanzees, humans' closest relatives, have created an entire tool kit to get their food.


SAT 20:00 The Christmas Session (b00pcnsp)
BBC Four celebrates merry midwinter in unique style, with an exhilarating blend of folk tradition and burlesque fun. Energetic 11-piece Bellowhead and Mercury-nominated alternative folkies The Unthanks get together with the impressive young singers Thea Gilmore and Lisa Knapp, plus other special guests.

Steered by genial host Paul Sartin, the assembled artists perform seasonal songs of their own alongside yuletide favourites, ranging from folk ballads and carols to parlour songs and carousing dance numbers, with everyone coming together for a final knees-up.

Filmed at the atmospheric Shoreditch Town Hall, the setting evokes an old music hall combined with a festive Victorian family parlour, bedecked with garlands, period lamps and fireplace. Even the audience are dressed up in old-fashioned finery and prove themselves ready to kick up their heels.


SAT 21:00 Wallander (b00ww5kf)
Firewall

Part 1

Two-part thriller based on Henning Mankell's novel. Detective Superintendent Kurt Wallander investigates two apparently unrelated deaths, which turn out to be linked to an international cyber-terrorism plot. During the investigation, Wallander discovers that he suffers from diabetes and a mysteriously alluring nurse offers to help him deal with his condition.


SAT 22:25 Reichenbach Falls (b0074tgn)
Drama based on a short story by Ian Rankin. DI Jim Buchan is a cop on the edge. When a 100-year-old body is discovered beneath the streets of Edinburgh, his investigation takes him on a parallel journey into the dark Jekyll and Hyde underworld of the Scottish capital's literary past.


SAT 23:45 Tom Jones at the BBC (b00vz5ml)
An archive celebration of Tom Jones's performances at the BBC from the start of his pop career in the mid-60s to Later...with Jools Holland in 2010 and all points in between, including Top of the Pops and The Dusty Springfield Show. A chronological celebration of Sir Tom through the years that is also a history of music TV at the BBC over most of the past 50 years.


SAT 00:45 Mark Lawson Talks To... (b00vz5mj)
Tom Jones

Mark Lawson talks to the iconic singer Sir Tom Jones about his life in and out of the limelight. Jones reflects on his modest upbringing in a coal mining community from the early pub tours in his native south Wales to achieving international acclaim - and the accompanying pressures of fame.

Since the 1960s Jones's unique voice and charisma established him as the quintessential pop star and sex symbol with hits such as It's Not Unusual and What's New Pussycat? After a succession of number one records, he moved to the USA where he hosted television shows and toured tirelessly. For five decades he has remained one of the most recognisable voices in popular music. Given his success at 70, a new album and new image, Sir Tom shares some of his most memorable life experiences and his dreams for the future.


SAT 01:45 Blame It on Fidel (b00wlrtc)
Drama. A nine-year-old girl has a simple life, with the only shadow in it coming from an uncle in Spain who is fighting Franco, the man whose name must not be mentioned.


SAT 03:15 The Christmas Session (b00pcnsp)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



SUNDAY 19 DECEMBER 2010

SUN 19:00 Ten Best Sacred Christmas Classics (b00gd0q9)
From Bach's Christmas Oratorio and Handel's Messiah to much-loved carols, ten memorable performances from the archives are introduced by a starry line-up of musicians and music lovers, including Katherine Jenkins, Billy Bragg, Michael Portillo and David Soul.


SUN 20:00 The Truth about Christmas Carols (b00gbgt3)
There could be nothing more sweet and sentimental than the sound of traditional carols performed by a velvet-voiced choir at Christmas. Or so you would think. Composer Howard Goodall uncovers the surprising and often secret history of the Christmas carol.

Far from being accepted as part of the celebrations of Jesus's birth, over the centuries carols have been banned by both church and state. The carols we sing seem set in stone and yet they can have up to 400 regional variations. Individual carols have caused controversy - While Shepherds Watched had to be cleaned up by the Victorians for being too crude and there's a suspicion that O Come All Ye Faithful was a call to 18th-century Jacobites to rebel.

The documentary celebrates the enduring power of the carol with a variety of performances from folk singer Bella Hardy to the choir of Truro Cathedral.


SUN 21:00 Soul Noel: Gospel and Soul Stars Sing Christmas (b00wvcs3)
A Christmas concert with a difference, as carols, Christmas anthems and the odd pop classic are performed with a gospel and soul twist.

Warm yourself on a winter's night with gospel, soul, reggae, ska and soca versions of classics such as Silent Night, Hark the Herald Angels Sing, Jingle Bells, God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen and many more.

Filmed at the Porchester Hall in west London, it features UK soul diva Beverley Knight, the multi- talented jazz blues soul singer Carleen Anderson, Lagos-born jazz soul singer Ola Onabule and Birmingham-born Bryn Christopher in a unique celebration of Christmas.

Special guests include the legendary original Southern Blues-singing Golden Gate Quartet, a truly radical jubilee quartet, bringing the swing and groove of jazz into gospel music. Formed in the 1930s, the group still feature two original members. MD Ken Burton leads a stellar choir featuring a range of other top vocalists, all backed by a sizzling soul band.


SUN 22:00 The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency (b009nm0k)
The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency

Adapted from the Alexander McCall Smith novel, this is a poignant and amusing story chronicling the adventures of Precious Ramotswe, the traditionally built, eminently sensible and wise proprietor of the only female-owned detective agency in Botswana.

As a child, her father teaches Precious a great love for Botswana and the skills necessary to make a fine detective. After his death, Precious sets up her agency. It is a risky endeavour, but with the help of her quirky secretary, Mma Makutsi, she soon finds her services much in demand.

Precious investigates cases, helps people solve problems in their lives and soon finds a special friendship blossoming with JLB Matekoni, the highly respectable and slightly shy owner of Speedy Motors.


SUN 23:45 Festivals Britannia (b00wmdqs)
Continuing the critically acclaimed Britannia music series for BBC Four, this documentary tells the story of the emergence and evolution of the British music festival through the mavericks, dreamers and dropouts who have produced, enjoyed and sometimes fought for them over the last 50 years.

The film traces the ebb and flow of British festival culture from jazz beginnings at Beaulieu in the late 50s through to the Isle of Wight festivals at the end of the 60s, early Glastonbury and one-off commercial festivals like 1972's Bickershaw, the free festivals of the 70s and 80s and on through the extended rave at Castlemorton in 1992 to the contemporary resurgence in festivals like Glastonbury, Isle of Wight and Reading in the last decade.

Sam Bridger's film explores the central tension between the people's desire to come together, dance to the music and build temporary communities and the desire of the state, the councils and the locals to police these often unruly gatherings.

At the heart of the documentary is an ongoing argument about British freedom and shifts in the political, musical and cultural landscape set to a wonderful soundtrack of 50 years of great popular music which takes in trad jazz, Traffic, Roy Harper, the Grateful Dead, Hawkwind, Orbital and much more.

Featuring rare archive and interviews with Michael Eavis, Richard Thompson, Acker Bilk, Terry Reid, the Levellers, Billy Bragg, John Giddings, Melvin Benn, Roy Harper, Nik Turner, Peter Jenner, Orbital, amongst others.


SUN 01:15 Glastonbury (b00wyn9g)
1997

Radiohead

Arguably one of the greatest sets at the Glastonbury Festival in its entire 40 years started when Oxford's Radiohead took to the Pyramid Stage on Saturday June 28th 1997. They had released their seminal album OK Computer two weeks earlier to huge acclaim and this performance features many of its tracks, including Paranoid Android, Karma Police and No Surprises, as well as earlier songs such as The Bends.


SUN 02:15 Ten Best Sacred Christmas Classics (b00gd0q9)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


SUN 03:15 Soul Noel: Gospel and Soul Stars Sing Christmas (b00wvcs3)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



MONDAY 20 DECEMBER 2010

MON 19:00 The Highland Sessions (b0074rzf)
Episode 6

Six-part series celebrating the historical and contemporary links between Scottish and Irish Gaelic song by bringing together top exponents of both traditions to sing and play together with no audience except themselves, using a house band of their peers. Featuring a performance of the Bonnie Prince Charlie anthem Mo Ghile Mear, written in Ireland with Scottish Jacobites in mind.


MON 19:30 Ancient Worlds (b00wsqk6)
City of Man, City of God

In the last of the series, archaeologist and historian Richard Miles examines the rise and fall of the Roman Empire.

At the height of its power, the Roman Empire extended the benefits of its civilization to a 60 million citizens and subjects in a swathe of territory that extended from Hadrian's Wall to the banks of the Euphrates. Even under the rule of mad, bad and dangerous emperors, the imperial system proved to be robust, buttressed by the support of elite families in the far-flung corners of the empire whose loyalty was ensured by a system of cultural aspiration, economic opportunity and military coercion.

But the material benefits of the 'good order' delivered by Roman rule provided its citizens and subjects with the security to ask profound questions about the meaning of life, questions that the pragmatic, polytheistic Roman belief system was ill-equipped to answer. Christianity grew to fill the spiritual vacuum at the heart of Roman civilization, eventually claiming an Emperor, Constantine, as its greatest prize. The City of Man would be eclipsed the City of God.


MON 20:30 Only Connect (b00wvcyg)
Series 4

Wrights vs Alesmen

Quiz show presented by Victoria Coren in which knowledge will only take you so far, as patience and lateral thinking are also vital.

In this play-off between semi-final losers, the Wright family combine their wits to take on the mental firepower of the alesmen in a last battle for glory.

They compete to draw together the connections between things which, at first glance, seem utterly random - from I, Libertine to Venus on the Half-shell to the Tales of Beedle Bard to Fly Fishing.


MON 21:00 Timeshift (b00wvcyj)
Series 10

Nordic Noir: The Story of Scandinavian Crime Fiction

Draw the curtains and dim the lights for a chilling trip north for a documentary which investigates the success of Scandinavian crime fiction and why it exerts such a powerful hold on our imagination.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a literary blockbuster that has introduced millions of readers to the phenomenon that is Scandinavian crime fiction - yet author Stieg Larsson spent his life in the shadows and didn't live to see any of his books published. It is one of the many mysteries the programme investigates as it travels to Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Iceland in search of the genre's most acclaimed writers and memorable characters.

It also looks at Henning Mankell's brooding Wallander series, with actor Krister Henriksson describing the challenge of bringing the character to the screen, and it asks why so many stories have a political subtext. The programme finds out how Stieg Larsson based the bestselling Millennium trilogy on his work as an investigative journalist and reveals the unlikely source of inspiration for his most striking character, Lisbeth Salander.

There are also segments on Jo Nesbo, the Norwegian rock star-turned-writer tipped to inherit Larsson's mantle, and Karin Fossum, an author whose personal experience of murder has had a profound effect on her writing.


MON 22:00 Wallander (b00x1sbz)
Firewall

Part 2

Second of a two-part thriller based on Henning Mankell's novel. Detective Superintendent Kurt Wallander investigates two apparently unrelated deaths, which turn out to be linked to an international cyber-terrorism plot. During the investigation, Wallander discovers that he suffers from diabetes and a mysteriously alluring nurse offers to help him deal with his condition.


MON 23:25 Legends (b00tr86l)
Herb Alpert, Tijuana Brass and Other Delights

This is the story of deals on the beach, accidental pop stars, friendship, comebacks, multimillion dollar deals and new discoveries - the story of musician, producer, record industry mogul and artist, Herb Alpert.

Herb is probably best known as the trumpet player who created the Tijuana Brass and sold America, and the world, the sound of Mexico. Or the crooner that made the ladies swoon when he sang This Guy's in Love With You. From his first job working with soul legend Sam Cooke to creating A&M Records, Alpert's life reads like a wonderful story of dreams come true. This profile follows him today and platforms his music and artwork as he exhibits his sculptures for Hollywood's art elite. Contributors include Lou Adler, Quincy Jones, Richard Carpenter, Sting, Jam & Lewis and Stephen Fry.


MON 00:25 The Boats That Built Britain (b00s96rt)
The Matthew

No ship has ever made a more important discovery than the Matthew. In 1497, explorer John Cabot left Bristol on this little boat and 3,000 miles later landed in what we now know is North America. His discovery would change Britain and the world forever.

Sailor and writer Tom Cunliffe sails the Matthew for himself and finds out just how this incredible little boat made a journey into the unknown and came back to tell the story.


MON 00:55 The Boats That Built Britain (b00sbp0t)
The Pickle

HMS Pickle is the unsung hero of the British navy. In 1805 Britain had just won the most significant sea battle in history, Trafalgar. But how to get the message home to an expectant nation? Enter the Pickle, the smallest ship in the fleet, a little boat with a revolutionary new design that beat her bigger rivals back to Britain to deliver the news. Sailor and writer Tom Cunliffe sets out in the Pickle and tells the story of a boat that, against all the odds, delivered the most important news in Britain's maritime history.


MON 01:25 Electric Dreams (b00n1j8n)
1970s

A family and their home are stripped of all their modern technology to live a life of decades past.

The family must live through the digital wilderness of the 1970s at a rate of a year per day, starting in 1970. They have their very own technical support team to source and supply them with the vintage technology that would have been available to British households during the decade.

By modern standards the 1970s are decidedly low-tech and the family face many challenges. They endure a spell without central heating and get to grips with the suburban favourite, the teasmade. They see the effects of 70s industrial unrest on their home when they experience a power cut and home entertainment becomes even more limited when their newly-arrived colour television breaks down.

But it's not all grim - the arrival of chopper bikes, the first video game and a mix-tape expert who shows them how to create the soundtrack for their very own slide show all help to prove that life in the 1970s had its upside too.


MON 02:25 Timeshift (b00wvcyj)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


MON 03:25 Julia Bradbury's German Wanderlust (b00wltfv)
Ruegen

Julia Bradbury takes her boots and backpack to the Continent to explore the landscape of Germany and the cultural movement that made it famous - Romanticism.

The Germans enjoy a relationship with walking that has lasted over 200 years. The exploration of their landscape has inspired music, literature and art, and Romanticism has even helped shape the modern German nation, as Julia discovers. By walking in four very different parts of Germany, she explores river valleys, coastlines, mountains and gorges, following in the footsteps of Richard Wagner, Caspar David Friedrich, Johannes Brahms as well as British Romantics like William Turner and Lord Byron. This is Julia's chance to discover her own sense of wanderlust.

The Baltic coastline is the setting as Julia continues her walking tour. Generations of holidaymakers have flocked to the island of Ruegen, inspired by the Romantics of the 19th century - particularly Caspar David Friedrich, the most celebrated of German Romantic painters. Julia's walk explores popular seaside resorts and beaches as well as the stunning chalk cliffs that Friedrich loved to paint. But in between lies the eerie and unexpected remains of Hitler's ambitious attempt to create a vast Nazi holiday camp.



TUESDAY 21 DECEMBER 2010

TUE 19:00 Indian Hill Railways (b00qvk99)
The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway

From the Himalayas in the north to the Nilgiris in the south - for a hundred years these little trains have climbed through the clouds and into the wonderful world of Indian hill railways.

The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway is a line so close to the people that it flows like a river through their lives. The relationship between the train and the people is changing, however, as a new generation of Gurkhas populates these hills, demanding an independent state and fighting for a new identity as they journey into the modern Indian world.


TUE 20:00 The Cult of... (b009lt28)
Sunday Night

Hamish Macbeth

Series which unearths the history and anecdotes behind cult British Sunday night drama looks at Scottish cop series Hamish Macbeth.

The Sunday night schedules had never seen anything like it, and a dope-smoking cop living in a Scottish village with palm trees was only the beginning of the oddness. Developed from a series of novels that weren't even published in the UK, the Hamish of the books was a strapping six-footer with ginger hair and a mongrel dog. So how did he become Robert Carlyle?

If Hamish was a renegade cop, then Hamish Macbeth was a suitably subversive production. There were fraught discussions with BBC management about the drug-taking of the policeman and the doctor. There were concerns about the writers killing off the fluffy white dog. And the idea of putting the dead dog in the freezer provided a particularly strong reaction. But the production team generally got their own way. And they were proved to be right when the viewing figures regularly topped 10 million.

Interviewees include Duncan Duff, Ralph Riach, Valerie Gogan, Brian Pettifer, executive producers Scott Meek and Andrea Calderwood, producer Deirdre Keir, writer Danny Boyle and script editor Dominic Minghe.


TUE 20:30 The Hound of the Baskervilles (b0074bb7)
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's legendary hero Sherlock Holmes faces the beast of Dartmoor in a chilling thriller.

The Baskerville family is cursed. Sir Charles Baskerville has lived in obsessive fear of a family legend in which a spectral hound wreaks vengeance on his ancestors. His death seems innocent enough but Mortimer, his friend and physician, is uneasy and suspicious.

Sherlock Holmes confronts his most famous and complex case, which tests his detective skills to the limit. At times it seems that he will lose the game as his foe outwits and eludes him.

Is it possible that one of the century's most developed deductive minds has met his equal?

Mystery, suspense and terror as Sherlock Holmes and Doctor John Watson confront the forces of evil on Dartmoor.


TUE 22:10 Dirk Gently (b00wqfl2)
Drama featuring writer Douglas Adams' holistic detective Dirk Gently, who operates based on the fundamental interconnectedness of all things. An investigation into a missing cat is inextricably linked to a chance encounter with an old friend, an exploding warehouse, a missing billionaire and a plate of biscuits.


TUE 23:10 Accused (b00wwk51)
Series 1

Alison's Story

Series of dramas, created by Jimmy McGovern, about ordinary people as they face their day in court. Alison, a busy working mother with a young family, stands accused. Passion and hatred have brought Alison and her husband David to opposite sides of the courtroom. Will the jury find her guilty as charged?


TUE 00:10 The Boats That Built Britain (b00scqb3)
The Phoenix

The square rigger is arguably the most important vehicle in history. In the 19th century these boats transported finished goods and raw materials all over the world, transforming Britain from a second-rate European power into the richest and most powerful nation on earth.

Sailor and writer Tom Cunliffe sets out on the Phoenix, a plank-perfect square rigger, to discover just how these incredible boats changed Britain and the world forever.


TUE 00:40 The Boats That Built Britain (b00scqsj)
The Reaper

The Reaper is the biggest sailing lugger ever to fish the seas. Seventy feet long and capable of pulling in ten tonnes of herring in a single haul, the Reaper was an awesome beast that fed Britain at a time when she needed it most.

Sailor and writer Tom Cunliffe sails her for himself and finds out just how this giant of the seas came about.


TUE 01:10 Electric Dreams (b00n59t4)
1980s

A family and their home are stripped of all their modern technology to live a life of decades past.

The family must live through the digital wilderness of the 1980s at a rate of a year per day, starting in 1980. They have their very own technical support team who source and supply them with the vintage technology that would have been available to British households during the decade, including iconic technology such as the Walkman, Game and Watch and the CD player.

For a modern family it is a decade of challenges. In 1980 they attempt to cook a roast dinner in a microwave oven, as consumers of the time were encouraged to do. They are faced with a bewildering choice of home computers in 1982 and the arduous task of finding a rental shop that still supplies films on video cassette for their newly-arrived VHS player.

Dad takes a spin in the most famous technological flop of the decade, the Sinclair C5, but the family do experience an 80s success story when New Wave icons Ultravox pay a surprise visit to demonstrate the synthesiser technology which soundtracked the era.


TUE 02:10 The Great Outdoors (b00t6z51)
Episode 1

Comedy which follows the hikes, heartaches, friendships and rivalries of a misfit rambling club. Club organiser Bob begins a titanic battle of wills with the newest member, Christine, for the heart and soul of his treasured walking group.

Bob's teenage daughter Hazel is mortified at the arrival of geeky Victor from her school and married businesswoman Sophie is looking for a way out from her freeloading husband Joe.


TUE 02:40 Ride of My Life: The Story of the Bicycle (b00t6ylx)
Author Rob Penn travels around the world collecting hand-built parts for his dream bicycle and charts the social history of one of mankind's greatest inventions.


TUE 03:40 The Cult of... (b009lt28)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



WEDNESDAY 22 DECEMBER 2010

WED 19:00 Indian Hill Railways (b00qzzlm)
The Nilgiri Mountain Railway

From the Himalayas in the north to the Nilgiris in the south - for a hundred years these little trains have climbed through the clouds and into the wonderful world of Indian Hill Railways.

The Nilgiri Mountain Railway is a romantic line, popular with honeymooners and driven by love and devotion as well as steam. It chugs through the south Indian jungle up to a hill station, once known as Snooty Ooty.

The current guard is Ivan. Married for twenty years, he is concerned about his friend Jenni, the ticket inspector, because he's still a bachelor - but Jenni has a secret.

In the engine shed, Shivani, the railway's first female diesel engineer, is working on a steam loco. She has to make it look its best, as in the year of filming, 1999, the railway celebrated its centenary. The high point is the Black Beauty competition to pick the best engine on the line, but rains and landslides threaten the proceedings and the tourist business. Will love win out in the end?


WED 20:00 The Cult of... (b009hf6g)
Sunday Night

Bergerac

Series which unearths the history and anecdotes behind cult British Sunday night drama looks at Jersey-set detective series Bergerac, which made a star of John Nettles.

Bergerac had the right kind of setting for a traditional Sunday night drama and did wonders for the Jersey tourist industry, but finding a contemporary cop show in the Sunday night schedules was far more unusual. And Jim Bergerac wasn't even the usual cop, with his struggle to overcome his alcoholism and inability to shake off his ex-wife Debbie or his dodgy ex-father-in-law, Charlie Hungerford.

But Jersey, Jim and his list of lovers kept viewers tuning in in their millions, as did the all-action style of future Bond director Martin Campbell. Success and popularity got the tabloids interested - which meant a payout for Liza Goddard when one paper confused her on-screen interest in John Nettles for the real thing. And whatever happened to Jim's distinctive Triumph Roadster?

Interviewees include John Nettles, Sean Arnold, Liza Goddard, Louise Jameson, Deborah Grant, series creator Robert Banks Stewart, writer Rod Beacham and director Martin Campbell.


WED 20:30 Julia Bradbury's German Wanderlust (b00wvd7z)
Saxon Switzerland

Julia Bradbury takes her boots and backpack to the Continent to explore the landscape of Germany and the cultural movement that made it famous - Romanticism.

The Germans enjoy a relationship with walking that has lasted over 200 years. The exploration of their landscape has inspired music, literature and art, and Romanticism has even helped shape the modern German nation, as Julia discovers. By walking in four very different parts of Germany, she explores river valleys, coastlines, mountains and gorges, following in the footsteps of Richard Wagner, Caspar David Friedrich, Johannes Brahms as well as British Romantics like William Turner and Lord Byron. This is Julia's chance to discover her own sense of wanderlust.

Julia's final adventure takes her deep into the former East Germany. Saxony is a largely unknown destination for UK walkers, but, as Julia discovers, it contains some remarkable landscape. The sandstone mountains, set alongside the mighty Elbe river, are a bizarre mix of forest, gorge and rock towers. Two hundred years ago, they were the focal point for a rush of Romantic artists filled with a new desire to explore landscape for themselves. The wonder of local nature has been attracting visitors ever since.


WED 21:00 The Perfect TV Detective (b00gbj3m)
Documentary celebrating Britain's TV detectives. In a genre that has featured detectives as monk, cook, gardener and time traveller, do we still prefer a private eye or a plain old-fashioned policeman? How does Sherlock Holmes compare to Morse, Jonathan Creek or Taggart?

This is an investigation into who the most popular sleuths are, and why.


WED 22:00 Bergerac (b007bp5w)
Series 3

Ice Maiden

When notorious jewel thief Philippa Vale hits town just in time for the private sale of a large diamond, Jim concentrates on maximising security and seems to have it all sewn up. But the impossible happens when the diamond is stolen mid-auction.


WED 22:50 The Cult of... (b009hf6g)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


WED 23:20 Dirk Gently (b00wqfl2)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:10 on Tuesday]


WED 00:20 The Boats That Built Britain (b00sfshw)
Bristol Channel Pilot Cutter

Many consider the Bristol Channel pilot cutter to be the finest sailing boat design ever. Fast, seaworthy and beautiful to behold, the pilot cutter is the perfect combination of form and function - a thoroughbred perfectly adapted to a life in one of the Britain's most treacherous stretches of water. Sailor and writer Tom Cunliffe explores the life of the pilots and sails a perfectly restored cutter to find out just what drove these men and their wonderful machines.


WED 00:50 The Boats That Built Britain (b00sfsqw)
World War Two Landing Craft

Looking more like a skip than a boat, the LCVP, or Landing Craft Vehicle and Personnel, won't win any prizes for beauty. Yet the craft did more to win World War II than any other piece of machinery. There were once over 20,000 of these little boats, but only a handful remain. Sailor and writer Tom Cunliffe puts one of them through its paces and finds out how the boat was developed for one momentous day in 1944.


WED 01:20 Electric Dreams (b00n90xc)
1990s

A family and their home are stripped of all their modern technology to live a life of decades past.

The family must live through the communication and home entertainment revolution of the 1990s, at a rate of a year per day, starting in 1990. They have their own Technical Support Team to source and supply them with the vintage technology that would have been available to British households during the decade.

They attempt to stay in touch using pagers and take a giant mobile phone and a rudimentary digital camera on a day trip to Paris in honour of the opening of the Channel Tunnel in 1994. Workplace technology becomes increasingly portable, but a home without access to the internet proves frustrating and the arrival of the 1990s world wide web is a far cry from what the kids are used to.

The 1990s see a whirlwind of technological progress and the family are inundated with gadgets and upgrades that infiltrate every area of their home. They are left reeling by the pace of change and surprised by the impact of 1990s tech on family life.


WED 02:20 The Great Outdoors (b00t9r89)
Episode 2

Christine is now deputy leader of the club and is soon winning the hearts and minds of the group, especially Bob's best friend Tom. Meanwhile, stressed businesswoman Sophie makes a desperate leap on Victor and the group must face down the rambler's worst enemy - a farmer who keeps blocking public rights of way.


WED 02:50 The Perfect TV Detective (b00gbj3m)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


WED 03:50 Julia Bradbury's German Wanderlust (b00wvd7z)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:30 today]



THURSDAY 23 DECEMBER 2010

THU 19:00 Indian Hill Railways (b00r5wk7)
The Kalka-Shimla Railway

From the Himalayas in the north to the Nilgiris in the south - for a hundred years these little trains have climbed through the clouds and into the wonderful world of Indian hill railways.

Shimla was once the summer capital of the Raj. They built churches, schools, a town hall and the railway and left behind their symbols of empire and an ethos of duty, loyalty and ambition - but they also left a divided subcontinent.

Characters featured include Maqsood, a refugee and a porter from Kashmir, and John Whitmarsh-Knight, a teacher looking for a home. Sanjay the stationmaster is hoping for promotion, and his boss Bataljit is waiting for a transfer, but everybody is waiting for the snow.


THU 20:00 The Andy Williams Christmas Show (b00phmjh)
It being the season of goodwill and bad jumpers, it is time to relive the best moments from a number of snowy Christmases that came to the NBC Studios in California between 1962 and 1974 for Andy Williams's annual yuletide songfest. With guest appearances from the Osmond Brothers and the Williams Family.


THU 20:30 The Beauty of Diagrams (b00wvd9x)
Pioneer Plaque

Series in which mathematician Marcus du Sautoy explores the stories behind some of the world's most familiar and influential scientific diagrams.

When the unmanned space probe Pioneer 10 took off from Cape Canaveral in March 1972, it had on board a remarkable diagram. The Pioneer Plaque was designed to communicate fundamental facts about Earth and its inhabitants to life on other planets. In carefully engraved graphic images and mathematical symbols, the plaque would reveal the Earth's location in the solar system and show extra-terrestrial intelligent life what human beings looked like.

But how could one single diagram do all that - what do you put in and what do you leave out? With its naked human figures, the plaque sparked arguments amongst feminists and conservatives.

So was it, in the end, a great intellectual game or was it the most enterprising, artistic and scientific diagram of all time, perhaps even the ultimate diagram?


THU 21:00 A Child's Christmases in Wales (b00pgr8x)
One-off period comedy, peeping into the lives of a south Wales family's Christmases across the 1980s, written by comedian Mark Watson and inspired by a Dylan Thomas short story. Christmas in this household may be a less than poetic affair, but it is just as eventful. So much changes across a decade in any family, and yet so much manages to remain the same.


THU 22:00 Wallander (b00ww5kf)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Saturday]


THU 23:25 Wallander (b00x1sbz)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Monday]


THU 00:50 Timeshift (b00wvcyj)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Monday]


THU 01:50 The Beauty of Diagrams (b00wvd9x)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:30 today]


THU 02:20 The Great Outdoors (b00td53g)
Episode 3

On the annual trip to the south coast, Bob and Christine's rivalry finally comes to a head. Meanwhile, Victor is hoping he will finally get his promised kiss from Hazel and Tom plucks up courage for his own romance.


THU 02:50 A Child's Christmases in Wales (b00pgr8x)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



FRIDAY 24 DECEMBER 2010

FRI 19:00 Shanties and Sea Songs with Gareth Malone (b00s97c0)
The story of Britain's maritime past has a hidden history of shanties and sea songs, and choirmaster Gareth Malone has been travelling Britain's coast to explore this unique heritage. From dedicated traditionalists to groundbreaking recording artists, Gareth meets a variety of sea-singers from across the country.

His journey begins in Portsmouth where he meets a devoted shanty singer, before continuing on to Tyneside and the Yorkshire coast, where the Filey Fisherman's Choir, with an average age of 70, are determined to keep the tradition alive.

Gareth gets a fascinating insight into the songs of the Herring Girls when he visits Gardenstown in Scotland. In Whitby, he meets Kimber's Men, a local group who have dedicated themselves to writing and singing songs celebrating heroes of the sea, such as a rescue of 1881 when the sea was so rough the people of Whitby had to carry their 2-tonne lifeboat some six miles overland on a wooden trailer and in heavy snow to the bay where a ship had hit the rocks. Despite the exhaustion, they still managed to rescue the shipwrecked crew and passengers.

Gareth's journey ends in Port Isaac in Cornwall, where a group of local fishermen sing shanties and sea songs alongside their day job. Calling themselves the Fishermen's Friends, they have been so successful that they have landed a lucrative record deal.


FRI 20:00 A Christmas History of Sacred Music (b00wvdcj)
Simon Russell Beale takes a journey through Italy, Britain, Germany and Austria as he explores how the sound of Christmas has evolved in response to changing ideas about the Nativity. His story takes us through two millennia of music, from a fragment of papyrus preserving the earliest known piece of Christian music to the stories behind Hark the Herald Angels Sing, Silent Night and In the Bleak Midwinter, and the work of popular Christmas composer, John Rutter. Music is performed by Harry Christophers and his choir, The Sixteen.


FRI 21:00 Sacred Music at Christmas (b00x21sc)
A Choral Christmas

Simon Russell Beale introduces a programme of choral music for Christmas from across the centuries, featuring full performances of some of the works featured in the accompanying documentary. Harry Christophers and his choir, The Sixteen, perform music including JS Bach's harmonisation of the medieval carol In dulci jubilo, A Spotless Rose by Herbert Howells and the Christmas text O magnum mysterium, set as a motet by Tomas Luis de Victoria.


FRI 21:30 Soul Noel: Gospel and Soul Stars Sing Christmas (b00wvcs3)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Sunday]


FRI 22:30 Mark Lawson Talks To... (b00wvdcl)
Simon Russell Beale

Mark Lawson talks to the revered actor Simon Russell Beale, hailed as 'the greatest actor of his generation'. In this reflective interview, Russell Beale discusses his life on and off stage and the pleasure and pressure of taking on some of the most distinguished roles in history. He offers valuable insights into how he approaches his diverse roles - from princes to psychopaths, boarding school boys to ballerinas - as well as his changing career as he now approaches fifty.

Having begun life as a St Pauls chorister, Russell Beale's theatrical prowess was cemented with Best Actor plaudits for Hamlet, Uncle Vanya and Twelfth Night, as well as delighting audiences with performances in London Assurance, Spamalot, The Winter's Tale and Deathtrap.

Having enthralled television audiences in his BAFTA award-winning drama Dance to the Music of Time, Russell Beale continues to demonstrate his versatility on screen, from performing Sondheim in the BBC Proms and presenting BBC Four's documentary series Sacred Music, to one of his best loved roles as the home secretary in Spooks.


FRI 23:30 Cardigans at Christmas (b0077dwr)
A feast of old chestnuts from the glory days of Christmases past with this look at the rise and demise of the Christmas light-entertainment spectacular. From Christmas Night with the Stars to Val Doonican and Christmas Snowtime special, the programme revisits a world of snow made from soapflakes, chorus lines sweating in winter woolies and recycled sleighs.


FRI 00:20 Legends (b0074rs3)
Matt Monro - The Man With The Golden Voice

Neil Pearson narrates a documentary telling the story of Matt Monro, the young Londoner born Terry Parsons who became one of the world's most popular ballad singers. The programme gives a fascinating insight into working class life and popular culture since the Second World War. Contributors include Paul Gambaccini, Don Black, George Martin, John Barry and Monro's family.


FRI 01:20 A Child's Christmases in Wales (b00pgr8x)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Thursday]


FRI 02:20 A Christmas History of Sacred Music (b00wvdcj)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


FRI 03:20 Sacred Music at Christmas (b00x21sc)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]




LIST OF THIS WEEK'S PROGRAMMES
(Note: the times link back to the details; the pids link to the BBC page, including iPlayer)

A Child's Christmases in Wales 21:00 THU (b00pgr8x)

A Child's Christmases in Wales 02:50 THU (b00pgr8x)

A Child's Christmases in Wales 01:20 FRI (b00pgr8x)

A Christmas History of Sacred Music 20:00 FRI (b00wvdcj)

A Christmas History of Sacred Music 02:20 FRI (b00wvdcj)

Accused 23:10 TUE (b00wwk51)

Ancient Worlds 19:30 MON (b00wsqk6)

Bergerac 22:00 WED (b007bp5w)

Blame It on Fidel 01:45 SAT (b00wlrtc)

Cardigans at Christmas 23:30 FRI (b0077dwr)

Dirk Gently 22:10 TUE (b00wqfl2)

Dirk Gently 23:20 WED (b00wqfl2)

Electric Dreams 01:25 MON (b00n1j8n)

Electric Dreams 01:10 TUE (b00n59t4)

Electric Dreams 01:20 WED (b00n90xc)

Festivals Britannia 23:45 SUN (b00wmdqs)

Glastonbury 01:15 SUN (b00wyn9g)

Indian Hill Railways 19:00 TUE (b00qvk99)

Indian Hill Railways 19:00 WED (b00qzzlm)

Indian Hill Railways 19:00 THU (b00r5wk7)

Julia Bradbury's German Wanderlust 03:25 MON (b00wltfv)

Julia Bradbury's German Wanderlust 20:30 WED (b00wvd7z)

Julia Bradbury's German Wanderlust 03:50 WED (b00wvd7z)

Legends 23:25 MON (b00tr86l)

Legends 00:20 FRI (b0074rs3)

Life 19:00 SAT (b00pcm3h)

Mark Lawson Talks To... 00:45 SAT (b00vz5mj)

Mark Lawson Talks To... 22:30 FRI (b00wvdcl)

Only Connect 20:30 MON (b00wvcyg)

Reichenbach Falls 22:25 SAT (b0074tgn)

Ride of My Life: The Story of the Bicycle 02:40 TUE (b00t6ylx)

Sacred Music at Christmas 21:00 FRI (b00x21sc)

Sacred Music at Christmas 03:20 FRI (b00x21sc)

Shanties and Sea Songs with Gareth Malone 19:00 FRI (b00s97c0)

Soul Noel: Gospel and Soul Stars Sing Christmas 21:00 SUN (b00wvcs3)

Soul Noel: Gospel and Soul Stars Sing Christmas 03:15 SUN (b00wvcs3)

Soul Noel: Gospel and Soul Stars Sing Christmas 21:30 FRI (b00wvcs3)

Ten Best Sacred Christmas Classics 19:00 SUN (b00gd0q9)

Ten Best Sacred Christmas Classics 02:15 SUN (b00gd0q9)

The Andy Williams Christmas Show 20:00 THU (b00phmjh)

The Beauty of Diagrams 20:30 THU (b00wvd9x)

The Beauty of Diagrams 01:50 THU (b00wvd9x)

The Boats That Built Britain 00:25 MON (b00s96rt)

The Boats That Built Britain 00:55 MON (b00sbp0t)

The Boats That Built Britain 00:10 TUE (b00scqb3)

The Boats That Built Britain 00:40 TUE (b00scqsj)

The Boats That Built Britain 00:20 WED (b00sfshw)

The Boats That Built Britain 00:50 WED (b00sfsqw)

The Christmas Session 20:00 SAT (b00pcnsp)

The Christmas Session 03:15 SAT (b00pcnsp)

The Cult of... 20:00 TUE (b009lt28)

The Cult of... 03:40 TUE (b009lt28)

The Cult of... 20:00 WED (b009hf6g)

The Cult of... 22:50 WED (b009hf6g)

The Great Outdoors 02:10 TUE (b00t6z51)

The Great Outdoors 02:20 WED (b00t9r89)

The Great Outdoors 02:20 THU (b00td53g)

The Highland Sessions 19:00 MON (b0074rzf)

The Hound of the Baskervilles 20:30 TUE (b0074bb7)

The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency 22:00 SUN (b009nm0k)

The Perfect TV Detective 21:00 WED (b00gbj3m)

The Perfect TV Detective 02:50 WED (b00gbj3m)

The Truth about Christmas Carols 20:00 SUN (b00gbgt3)

Timeshift 21:00 MON (b00wvcyj)

Timeshift 02:25 MON (b00wvcyj)

Timeshift 00:50 THU (b00wvcyj)

Tom Jones at the BBC 23:45 SAT (b00vz5ml)

Wallander 21:00 SAT (b00ww5kf)

Wallander 22:00 MON (b00x1sbz)

Wallander 22:00 THU (b00ww5kf)

Wallander 23:25 THU (b00x1sbz)