Radio-Lists Home Now on BBC 4

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



SATURDAY 16 JANUARY 2016

SAT 19:00 Stories from the Dark Earth: Meet the Ancestors Revisited (b01sgx9m)
Sacred Women of the Iron Age

Archaeologist Julian Richards returns to some of his most important digs to discover how science, conservation, and brand new finds have changed our understanding of entire eras of ancient history. Julian goes back to the excavation of two very different Iron Age woman - the possible sacrifice of a teenage girl from the Cotswolds, and the extraordinary chariot queen whose well preserved possessions are leading to some astonishing new conclusions about Iron Age belief, all because of a mirror and its otter-fur bag.


SAT 20:00 Castles: Britain's Fortified History (b04v85sy)
Defence of the Realm

Sam Willis explores how, by the Wars of the Roses, castles were under attack from a new threat - the cannon - but survived into the Tudor era only to find their whole purpose challenged. What had once been strategic seats of power now had to keep up with the fickle fashions of the court and become palaces to impress monarchs such as Elizabeth I.

Just as castles seemed to have lost their defensive function, the English Civil War erupted. The legacy of that tumultuous period resulted in castles no longer being associated with protection. Rather, their ruins took on a unique appeal, embodying a nostalgia for an age of chivalry that became a powerful part of the national psyche.


SAT 21:00 The Young Montalbano (b06y89ct)
Series 2

Death on the High Seas

Montalbano investigates the seemingly accidental killing of a fisherman aboard a Vigata fishing boat and uncovers far-reaching criminal activity in the process.

During the investigation, Fazio seems distracted and Montalbano soon discovers that the young policeman has become involved in protecting a local family from death threats during his spare time.

Meanwhile, as the wedding preparations continue, Livia's and Salvo's relationship looks like it might have run into trouble.

In Italian with English subtitles.


SAT 22:40 Music Moguls: Masters of Pop (p039w64c)
Money Makers

Three-part series revealing the secret history of pop and rock from the men and women who pull the strings behind the scenes.

Programme one tells the story of the maverick managers who controlled the careers of megastar artists, from Colonel Parker (Elvis) right the way up to Scooter Braun (Justin Bieber). Along the way are rollicking tales of industry legends like Led Zeppelin's Peter Grant, and Don Arden, who managed The Small Faces, Black Sabbath and ELO.

Narrated by Simon Napier-Bell, it also features contributions from Andrew Loog Oldham (The Rolling Stones), Jon Landau (Bruce Springsteen), Bill Curbishley (The Who), Paul McGuinness (U2) and Jonathan Dickins (Adele).


SAT 23:40 One-Hit Wonders at the BBC (b05r7nxx)
Compilation of some indelible hits by artists we hardly heard from again, at least in a chart sense. Featuring Peter Sarstedt's Where Do You Go To (My Lovely)? - a number one in 1969 and a hit he never really matched, Trio's 1982 smash Da Da Da, Phyllis Nelson's 1985 lovers rock-style classic Move Closer, and The New Radicals' 1999 hit You Get What You Give.

We travel through the years selecting some of your favourite number ones and a few others that came close, revealing what's happened to the one-off hitmakers since and exploring the unwritten laws that help make sense of the one-hit wonder phenomenon.


SAT 00:40 Danny Baker's Great Album Showdown (b01qkvxr)
File under: Rock

Exploring the essential elements of a great rock album, Danny Baker celebrates the golden age of the analogue, vinyl LP with rock fan Jeremy Clarkson, the Smiths' producer Stephen Street and writer Kate Mossman. With a passionate, fan's-eye view, Baker and his guests select their favourite rock albums and discuss how the LPs of the 60s and 70s were produced - and enjoyed - in quite a different way to their modern equivalents.


SAT 01:45 Top of the Pops (b06w0s18)
Richard Skinner introduces the pop programme, with performances from The Look, Chas and Dave, The Beat, Matchbox, The Nolans and Racey, and a dance sequence from Legs & Co.


SAT 02:25 Top of the Pops (b06whnr0)
Peter Powell introduces the pop programme, with performances from The Look, Spandau Ballet, XTC, Adam and the Ants, Bad Manners and Blondie.


SAT 03:05 Sounds of the Eighties (b0074shx)
Episode 1

The 80s saw many great contributions to the fields of art and culture. Not the least of these was floppy hair. Floppy hair dominates this episode of pop morsels from the BBC archive, featuring Adam and the Ants, Duran Duran, Culture Club, ABC, Wham!, Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Bananarama and Kylie Minogue.



SUNDAY 17 JANUARY 2016

SUN 19:00 India's Frontier Railways (b05mp8mt)
The Last Train in Nepal

In 1927 a British civil servant drew a line on a map to define the border between their Indian empire and the kingdom of Nepal. Today, that border line is only marked by a chain of boundary stones and pillars - it's a border that is almost invisible.

This is the story of an international railway line. It runs for 20 miles from the little-known town of Janakpur in Nepal and crosses over the border to Jaynagar junction in India.

But now the last train in Nepal is under threat of closure. Starved of funds from central government, the train and the track are in a dilapidated state. Derailments are common and the engine often breaks down. Yet it's a lifeline both for the community and the railway workers - their little train is held together with determination, invention and love.

Regina is strong, independent Nepali woman, married at 12 and pregnant at 13. Deserted by her husband, she's now a single mother of two teenage boys. She makes a living as a smuggler of small household goods. But it's illegal, so even when the train is running there's always the chance of getting caught.

Aarman is a ticket collector in Janakpur station. Married with three small children, he's the sole breadwinner for an extended family and he hasn't been paid for three months. Already deeply in debt, he wanted to send his kids to school, but if the line closes he's out of job - and no job means no money.

This is the story of the last train in Nepal and the community and railway workers who struggle every day to keep their train and their hopes alive.


SUN 20:00 Empire of the Tsars: Romanov Russia with Lucy Worsley (b06w0gn7)
Age of Extremes

Lucy Worsley continues her journey through Russia in the footsteps of the Romanovs, the most powerful royal dynasty in modern European history.

In this episode she examines the extraordinary reign of Catherine the Great, and the traumatic conflict with Napoleonic France that provides the setting for the novel War and Peace.

Lucy begins in the 18th century, when the great palaces of the Romanovs were built. But in Romanov Russia, blood was always intermingled with the gold - these splendid interiors were the backdrop to affairs, coups and murder.

At the magnificent palace of Peterhof near St Petersburg, Lucy charts the meteoric rise of Catherine the Great, who seized the Russian throne from her husband Peter III in 1762 and became the most powerful woman in the world. Catherine was a woman of huge passions - for art, for her adopted country (she was German by birth) and for her many lovers.

Lucy visits the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg, once the home of Catherine's vast art collection. Here she explores how, once Catherine had taken the throne, she compensated for her foreign origins by taking careful control of her image, using her portraits and clothes to create a brand that looked authentically Russian yet also modern and sophisticated. Lucy tells how Catherine expanded her empire through military victories overseas, while at home she encouraged education and introduced smallpox inoculation to Russia. But Catherine struggled to introduce deeper reforms, and the institution of serfdom remained largely unchanged. Lucy explains how this injustice fuelled a violent rebellion.

Nevertheless, Catherine left Russia more powerful on the world stage than ever. But all she had achieved looked set to be undone when Napoleon invaded Russia in 1812. Lucy relives the pivotal battle of Borodino, when the Russian army finally confronted the French forces; the traumatic destruction of Moscow; and, under Catherine's grandson Alexander, the eventual victory over the French that provided the Romanov dynasty with its most glorious hour.


SUN 21:00 Storyville (b06yghfw)
The Golden Age of Circus: The Show of Shows

Roll up, roll up for an unforgettable experience!

This film tells the story of itinerant circus performers, cabaret acts and vaudeville and fairground attractions. Rarities and never-before-seen footage of fairgrounds, circus entertainment, freak shows, variety performances, music hall and seaside entertainment are chronicled from the 19th and 20th centuries. Featuring early shows that wowed the world and home movies of some of the greatest circus families.


SUN 22:15 Timeshift (b037w38s)
Series 13

A Day at the Zoo

Using unique home movie footage, this is the story of how zoos captured the imagination of the British - from the first 'scientific zoological garden' in Regent's Park to Gerald Durrell's 'conservation ark', which became Jersey Zoo. It's a nostalgic tale of show-stopping animals - such as the original Jumbo the elephant and Bristol Zoo's Alfred the gorilla - as well as bold innovations like the make-believe mountains of London Zoo and Dudley's animal enclosures without bars. No wonder, despite modern concerns about keeping animals captive, a day at the zoo remains one of Britain's most popular family days out.


SUN 23:15 Lost Horizons: The Big Bang (b00dcbqm)
Professor Jim Al Khalili delves into over 50 years of the BBC science archive to tell the story behind the emergence of one of the greatest theories of modern science, the Big Bang.

The remarkable idea that our universe simply began from nothing has not always been accepted with the conviction it is today and, from fiercely disputed leftfield beginnings, took the best part of the 20th century to emerge as the triumphant explanation of how the universe began. Using curious horn-shaped antennas, U-2 spy planes, satellites and particle accelerators, scientists have slowly pieced together the cosmological jigsaw, and this documentary charts the overwhelming evidence for a universe created by a Big Bang.


SUN 00:15 Alex Higgins: The People's Champion (b00tmzfb)
One man transfixed television viewers during snooker's golden age - Alex 'Hurricane' Higgins. This poignant documentary charts the remarkable rise and fall of the snooker genius, from his early days growing up in Belfast to his climb to the top of the sport as two-time world champion.

Higgins was pure showbiz, a mercurial talent at the table who played the game like nobody had done before. Boxing had Muhammad Ali, football was blessed by George Best - snooker had Alex Higgins. Yet like Best, Higgins's brilliance was flawed by his demons. We chart the depressing lows - the alcohol abuse, threatening to have fellow Ulsterman Dennis Taylor shot, headbutting a senior member of snooker's hierarchy and falling out of a top floor window and living to tell the tale after a row with his then-girlfriend.

The Higgins story is completed with the final chapter of his life spent battling throat cancer; desperate hours spent in pubs and working men's clubs trying to rekindle his halcyon days; finally unable to eat properly because he'd lost his teeth and in the end, ultimately found dead alone in sheltered accommodation.

At times uplifting, but at other moments very sad - this is a rollercoaster journey charting the life of snooker's 'rock and roll star'.

Contributors include Jimmy White, Ronnie O'Sullivan, Dennis Taylor, Barry Hearn, Steve Davis, Ray Reardon and members of the Higgins family.


SUN 01:15 Peter and Dan Snow: 20th Century Battlefields (b007qjfb)
20th Century Battlefields

1942 Stalingrad

Peter and Dan Snow describe battles that transformed the 20th century, here telling the story of one of the most epic battles of World War II. With cutting-edge graphics, Peter describes how the tactics of Hitler and Stalin resulted in tragedy on both sides. Whilst Soviet citizens held on for life in the shattered city, Hitler's army froze to death in the countryside.

They film inside the infamous tractor factory, where Dan recounts one of the vicious clashes that flared up in the battle. And on a training exercise, experts from the British Army teach them how snipers would have operated around the city.


SUN 02:15 American Nomads (b01777fp)
Beneath the America we think we know lies a nation hidden from view - a nomadic nation, living on the roads, the rails and in the wild open spaces. In its deserts, forests, mountain ranges and on the plains, a huge population of modern nomads pursues its version of the American dream - to live free from the world of careers, mortgages and the white picket fence.

When British writer Richard Grant moved to the USA more than 20 years ago, it wasn't just a change of country. He soon found himself in a world of travellers and the culture of roadside America - existing alongside, but separate from, conventional society. In this film, he takes to the road again, on a journey without destination.

In a series of encounters and unplanned meetings, Richard is guided by his own instincts and experiences - and the serendipity of the road. Travelling with loners and groups, he encounters the different 'tribes' of nomads as he journeys across the deserts of America's south west.



MONDAY 18 JANUARY 2016

MON 19:00 World News Today (b06wr7hx)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


MON 19:30 Sorry! (p00xcgz2)
Series 2

Cromer or Bust

Timothy tries to arrange his parents' second honeymoon, so that he can have a party at home in their absence.


MON 20:00 Woolly Mammoth: Secrets from the Ice (b01fkcdr)
Professor Alice Roberts reveals the natural history of the most famous of ice age animals - the woolly mammoth. Mammoths have transfixed humans since the depths of the last ice age, when their herds roamed across what is now Europe and Asia. Although these curious members of the elephant family have been extinct for thousands of years, scientists can now paint an incredibly detailed picture of their lives thanks to whole carcasses that have been beautifully preserved in the Siberian permafrost.

Alice meets the scientists who are using the latest genetic, chemical and molecular tests to reveal the adaptations that allowed mammoths to evolve from their origins in the tropics to surviving the extremes of Siberia. And in a dramatic end to the film, she helps unveil a brand new woolly mammoth carcass that may shed new light on our own ancestors' role in their extinction.


MON 21:00 Nature's Wonderlands: Islands of Evolution (b06yjm68)
Hawaii: A New Eden

Three-part series in which Professor Richard Fortey investigates why islands are natural laboratories of evolution and meets some of the unique and remarkable species that live on them. Examining some of the crucial influences on natural selection that are normally overlooked - like geology, geography, isolation and time - the series reveals that there is much more to evolution than 'survival of the fittest'. Charting the lifecycle of islands - from their birth and colonisation to the flowering of evolutionary creativity that often accompanies their maturity, and what happens when an island grows old and nears its end - Fortey encounters wild lemurs in the rainforest of Madagascar, acid-resistant shrimps in the rock pools of Hawaii, and giant wolf spiders in Madeira as he searches for the hidden rules of island evolution.

In the first episode, Fortey is on Hawaii to investigate how life colonises a newly born island. According to some estimates, Hawaii has been successfully colonised by only one new species every 35,000 years due to its remote location - yet the Hawaiian Islands teem with a great diversity of life. In search of the evolutionary secrets of how one species becomes many, Fortey encounters beautiful honeycreeper birds whose evolution rivals that of Darwin's famous finches; carnivorous caterpillars who now can't eat leaves, and giant silversword plants that thrive in parched volcanic soil at 10,000 feet.


MON 22:00 Creation (b012rfpt)
In anguish about the religious turmoil it could cause and the tension it creates with his wife, Charles Darwin is delaying completion of his masterwork On the Origin of Species. Taking pleasure in his children's interest in scientific truth, he is mindful of the disapproval of the village and does not want to incur the wrath of the whole world. But as his health, and that of his beloved daughter Anne, deteriorates, he finally realises he must press on, despite his wife's misgivings.


MON 23:40 Impact! A Horizon Guide to Plane Crashes (b03d690n)
It's a macabre paradox, but almost every advance in aviation safety has been driven by a crash. After every crash, investigators determine its cause and scientists make every effort to ensure the same mistakes never happen again. Dallas Campbell delves into the Horizon archives to chart the deadly disasters that have helped make air travel today the safest it has ever been.


MON 00:40 Woolly Mammoth: Secrets from the Ice (b01fkcdr)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


MON 01:40 The Secret Horse: Quest for the True Appaloosa (b04z21cc)
Documentary in which a 69-year-old horsewoman from New Zealand sets off on an extraordinary journey to find the truth about the origins of the rare Appaloosa spotted horse. Back in the saddle for the first time in 12 years, she crosses one of the world's highest mountain ranges in search of a lost valley, where she hopes to discover whether the experts have been wrong all along and that the true source of the North American Appaloosa horse is Asia and not Europe, as the history books would have us believe.

An inspirational adventure story inspired by a lifelong passion for horses.


MON 02:40 Nature's Wonderlands: Islands of Evolution (b06yjm68)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



TUESDAY 19 JANUARY 2016

TUE 19:00 World News Today (b06wr7jk)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


TUE 19:30 Sorry! (p00xch2t)
Series 2

Perchance to Dream

Timothy is suffering from bouts of sleepwalking, which could cause trouble as the annual interview for promotion is just around the corner.


TUE 20:00 Alex Higgins: The People's Champion (b00tmzfb)
[Repeat of broadcast at 00:15 on Sunday]


TUE 21:00 The Queen's Castle (b00792v0)
The Ranger

Prince Philip, as Ranger of the Great Park, gives a tour of the castle's grounds. Plus, a look at the new shop in the Royal Chapel.


TUE 22:00 The Crusades (b01bqy7r)
Victory and Defeat

In the concluding episode of the series, Dr Thomas Asbridge reveals that the outcome of these epic holy wars was decided not on the hallowed ground of Jerusalem, but in Egypt. As trade blossomed between Christians and Muslims and the Mongol hordes arrived from Asia, a saintly French king - afire with crusading zeal - and the most remarkable Muslim leader of the Middle Ages fought for ultimate victory in the East.

Drawing upon eyewitness chronicles and the latest archaeological evidence, Dr Asbridge argues that it was a fearsome slave-warrior from the Russian Steppes - now forgotten in the West - who finally sealed the fate of the crusades. And, most controversially of all, Asbridge challenges the popular misconception that the medieval crusades sparked a clash of civilisations between Islam and the West that continues to this day.


TUE 23:00 Nature's Wonderlands: Islands of Evolution (b06yjm68)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Monday]


TUE 00:00 The World's Most Beautiful Eggs: The Genius of Carl Faberge (b0336tf3)
Stephen Smith explores the extraordinary life and work of the virtuoso jeweller Carl Faberge. He talks to HRH Prince Michael of Kent about Faberge items in the Royal Collection and to Russian billionaire Viktor Vekselberg, who spent $100 million acquiring nine exquisite Faberge eggs. The bejewelled trinkets Faberge made for the last tsars of Russia in the twilight of their rule have become some of the most sought-after treasures in the world, sometimes worth millions.

Smith follows in Faberge's footsteps, from the legendary Green Vaults in Dresden to the palaces of the tsars and the corridors of the Kremlin museum, as he discovers how this fin-de-siecle genius transformed his father's modest business into the world's most famous supplier of luxury items.


TUE 01:00 Stories from the Dark Earth: Meet the Ancestors Revisited (b01sgx9m)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Saturday]


TUE 02:00 The Making of King Arthur (b00tg2q2)
Poet Simon Armitage traces the evolution of the Arthurian legend through the literature of the medieval age and reveals that King Arthur is not the great national hero he is usually considered to be. He's a fickle and transitory character who was appropriated by the Normans to justify their conquest, he was cuckolded when French writers began adapting the story, and it took Thomas Malory's masterpiece of English literature, Le Mort d'Arthur, to restore his dignity and reclaim him as the national hero we know today.


TUE 03:00 Birth of the British Novel (b00ydj1p)
Author Henry Hitchings explores the lives and works of Britain's radical and pioneering 18th-century novelists who, in just 80 years, established all the literary genres we recognise today. It was a golden age of creativity led by Daniel Defoe, Jonathan Swift, Henry Fielding, Laurence Sterne, Fanny Burney and William Godwin, amongst others. Robinson Crusoe, Gulliver's Travels, Tom Jones and Tristram Shandy are novels that still sparkle with audacity and innovation.

On his journey through 18th-century fiction, Hitchings reveals how the novel was more than mere entertainment, it was also a subversive hand grenade that would change British society for the better. He travels from the homes of Britain's great and good to its lowliest prisons, meeting contemporary writers like Martin Amis, Will Self, Tom McCarthy and Jenny Uglow on the way.

Although 18th-century novels are woefully neglected today compared to those of the following two centuries, Hitchings shows how the best of them can offer as much pleasure to the reader as any modern classic.



WEDNESDAY 20 JANUARY 2016

WED 19:00 World News Today (b06wr7kb)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


WED 19:30 Sorry! (p00xch50)
Series 2

Sons and Lovers

Sitcom. Timothy's handsome cousin Brinsley comes to stay - and supplants Timothy in Mother's affections.


WED 20:00 The Story of Scottish Art (b06kq6nz)
Episode 3

Artist Lachlan Goudie explores how, at the turn of the 19th century, Scotland's artists challenged the traditions they had inherited and, embracing new ways of seeing and painting from the Continent, revolutionised Scottish art.

From the Glasgow Boys' intimate rural realism, to Arthur Melville's brilliantly experimental watercolours; from Hill House, Charles Rennie Mackintosh's 'total work of art', to JD Fergusson's pioneering Scottish modernism, this generation transformed the way we saw Scotland's landscape and identity.


WED 21:00 Empire of the Tsars: Romanov Russia with Lucy Worsley (b06wrgzw)
The Road to Revolution

Lucy Worsley concludes her history of the Romanov dynasty, investigating how the family's grip on Russia unravelled in their final century. She shows how the years 1825-1918 were bloody and traumatic, a period when four tsars tried - and failed - to deal with the growing pressure for constitutional reform and revolution.

Lucy finds out how the Romanovs tried to change the system themselves - in 1861, millions of enslaved serfs were freed by the Tsar-Liberator, Alexander II. But Alexander paid the ultimate penalty for opening the Pandora's box of reform when he was later blown up by terrorists on the streets of St Petersburg.

Elsewhere, there was repression, denial, war and - in the case of the last tsar, Nicholas II - a fatalistic belief in the power of God, with Nicholas's faith in the notorious holy man Rasputin being a major part in his undoing. Lucy also details the chilling murder of Nicholas and his family in 1918, and asks whether all of this horror have been avoided.

Lucy also shows how there was a growing movement among the people of Russia to determine their own fate. She traces the growth of the intelligentsia, writers and thinkers who sought to have a voice about Russia. Speaking out came with a risk - after Ivan Turgenev wrote about the appalling life of the serfs in 1852, he was sentenced to house arrest by tsar Nicholas I. Lucy also shows how anger against the Romanov regime created a later generation of radicals committed to overturning the status quo. Some would turn to terrorism and, finally, revolution.

As well as political upheaval there is private drama, and Lucy explains how Nicholas II's family life played into his family's downfall. His son and heir Alexei suffered from haemophilia - the secrecy the family placed around the condition led them into seclusion, further distancing them from the Russian people. It also led them to the influence of man who seemed to have the power to heal their son, and who was seen as a malign influence on Nicholas - Rasputin.


WED 22:00 The Queen's Castle (b00792v0)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Tuesday]


WED 23:00 Timeshift (b068fvln)
Series 15

The Trains That Time Forgot: Britain's Lost Railway Journeys

Timeshift journeys back to a lost era of rail travel, when trains had names, character and style. Once the pride of the railway companies that ran them, the named train is now largely consigned to railway history.

Writer and presenter Andrew Martin asks why we once named trains and why we don't do so anymore. He embarks on three railway journeys around Britain, following the routes of three of the most famous named trains - the Flying Scotsman, the Cornish Riviera Express and the Brighton Belle. We reflect on travel during the golden age of railways - when the journey itself was as important as reaching your destination - and compare those same journeys with the passenger experience today.


WED 00:00 The Crusades (b01bqy7r)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Tuesday]


WED 01:00 Constable: A Country Rebel (b04gv42q)
The Haywain by John Constable is such a comfortingly familiar image of rural Britain that it is difficult to believe it was ever regarded as a revolutionary painting, but in this film, made in conjunction with a landmark exhibition at the V&A, Alastair Sooke discovers that Constable was painting in a way that was completely new and groundbreaking at the time.

Through experimentation and innovation he managed to make a sublime art from humble things and, though he struggled in his own country during his lifetime, his genius was surprisingly widely admired in France.


WED 02:00 The Story of Scottish Art (b06kq6nz)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


WED 03:00 Empire of the Tsars: Romanov Russia with Lucy Worsley (b06wrgzw)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



THURSDAY 21 JANUARY 2016

THU 19:00 World News Today (b06wr7kh)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


THU 19:30 Top of the Pops (b06y8cnp)
Tommy Vance introduces the pop programme, featuring Slade, The Stranglers, Sheila Hylton, Susan Fassbender, John Lennon, The Gap Band, Phil Collins, Madness and Ultravox, and a dance performance from Legs & Co.


THU 20:00 Majesty and Mortar: Britain's Great Palaces (b0488trx)
Opening the Palace Doors

With the widowhood of Queen Victoria, the glorious life of palaces almost came to an abrupt end. There would be just one final flowering of palatial style just before the First World War, on an imperial scale - the redesign of Buckingham Palace and The Mall. The interwar period was a difficult time for many of Britain's best palaces, forced into a half-life of grace-and-favour accommodation for exiled royalty and aristocracy down on their luck. But more recent times would see restoration and conservation on a new scale and, with it, detective work to uncover palace secrets.


THU 21:00 The Brain with David Eagleman (b06y8hyr)
What Is Reality?

Series in which Dr David Eagleman takes viewers on an extraordinary journey that explores how the brain, locked in silence and darkness without direct access to the world, conjures up the rich and beautiful world we all take for granted.

This episode begins with the astonishing fact that this technicolour multi-sensory experience we are having is a convincing illusion conjured up for us by our brains.

In the outside world there is no colour, no sound, no smell. These are all constructions of the brain. Instead, there is electromagnetic radiation, air compression waves and aromatic molecules, all of which are interpreted by the brain as colour, sound and smell.

We meet a man who is blind despite the fact that he has eyes that can see. His story reveals that it's the brain that sees, not the eyes. A woman with schizophrenia, whose psychotic episodes were her reality, emphasises the fact that whatever our brains tell us is out there, we believe it.

Visual illusions are reminders that what's important to the brain is not being faithful to 'reality', but enabling us to perceive just enough so that we can navigate successfully through it. The brain leaves a lot out of its beautiful rendition of the physical world, a fact that Dr Eagleman reveals using experiments and street demonstrations.

Each one of our brains is different, and so is the reality it produces. What is reality? It's whatever your brain tells you it is.


THU 22:00 Brian Pern (b06wrhzx)
Brian Pern: 45 Years of Prog and Roll

Episode 2

As Brian has been inducted into the USA Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, director Rhys Thomas explores how Brian broke America with the success of his classic album Shelf Life. He goes behind the scenes of the album's creation and looks at the real events in Brian's life that inspired the hit songs, both good and bad. He also follows Brian back to Los Angeles where he is reunited with his family and ex-wife after more than a decade.


THU 22:30 India's Frontier Railways (b05nhjht)
The Samjhauta Express

Freedom came to the subcontinent in August 1947. The British hastily partitioned British India before they left. Independence was attended by a million deaths and 14 million people were displaced.

Yet despite three wars, Pakistan and Indian railways have established a cross-border train, known as the Samjhauta Express - Samjhauta meaning agreement.

Amongst the passengers on the Samjhauta Express from Lahore to Delhi are Bilal and his father Abiz. Seventeen-year-old Bilal was the victim of an accident which damaged his eye. Unable to source the right treatment in Pakistan, father and son trawled the internet and finally found a suitable clinic. But it was in India. They have never stepped outside Pakistan, so they are a little nervous. Will they be successful in getting Bilal's eye treated?

Also on the train is Rahat Khan, the hockey queen. She's a Pakistan international and a railway hockey champion. She is travelling with her Pakistan girls' hockey team to play a match in India. But not everything goes to plan.

For the Sikh community, the Punjab is home. The golden temple of Amritsar is the holy of holies. But each year, on Guru Nanak's birthday, the railway runs special trains across the border to the guru's birthplace in Pakistan, despite the security concerns.


THU 23:30 Top of the Pops (b06y8cnp)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]


THU 00:10 When Pop Ruled My Life: The Fans' Story (b05wn8hf)
Journalist Kate Mossman explores the unique relationship between artist and fan, from The Beatles to One Direction, and her own evolving fascination with Queen.


THU 01:10 Majesty and Mortar: Britain's Great Palaces (b0488trx)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


THU 02:10 Brian Pern (b06wrhzx)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 today]


THU 02:40 The Brain with David Eagleman (b06y8hyr)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



FRIDAY 22 JANUARY 2016

FRI 19:00 World News Today (b06wr7lf)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


FRI 19:30 Top of the Pops (b06yjc20)
Simon Bates introduces the pop programme, featuring Joe Dolce, The Stray Cats, The Passions, Rainbow, Blondie, Spandau Ballet, Cliff Richard, Dire Straits, XTC and John Lennon, and a dance performance from Legs & Co.


FRI 20:00 The Good Old Days (b06wrjvt)
Leonard Sachs presents the old-time music hall programme from the City Varieties Theatre, Leeds. Featuring Beryl Reid, Roy Castle, Lorna Dallas, Gino Donati and the Valla Bertini.


FRI 20:45 Pop Go the Sixties (b00cvzhf)
Series 2

Dusty Springfield

A colourful nugget of pop mined from the BBC's archive. From her own series recorded in 1967, Dusty Springfield performs the Bobby Hebb classic, Sunny, which had been a hit in the UK for Cher and Georgie Fame.


FRI 20:50 Pop Go the Sixties (b00cyyqt)
Series 2

Sandie Shaw

Pop moments from the BBC's 60s archive. From a rehearsal for a Top of the Pops performance, Sandie gives an accidentally aloof ice-queen rendering of Long Live Love so the cameras can practice their positions. An otherworldly performance of her number 1 hit from 1965.


FRI 20:55 Pop Go the Sixties (b00d24n3)
Series 2

Status Quo

Pop moments from the BBC's sixties archive. A youthful Status Quo, complete with ruffled shirts and sideburns, sing their first hit single, Pictures of Matchstick Men, on a 1968 episode of Top of the Pops.


FRI 21:00 Duets at the BBC (b01c2xwt)
The BBC delves into its archive for the best romantic duets performed at the BBC over the last 50 years. Whether it is Robbie and Kylie dancing together on Top of the Pops or Kris Kristofferson and Rita Coolidge singing into each other's eyes on the Whistle Test, there is plenty of chemistry. Highlights include Nina and Frederik's Baby It's Cold Outside, Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers, Sonny and Cher, Shirley Bassey and Neil Diamond, Peaches and Herb, and a rare performance from Peter Gabriel and Kate Bush.


FRI 22:00 Music Moguls: Masters of Pop (p039x53y)
Melody Makers

Part two of this enlightening series exploring the music business from behind the scenes looks at the music producers. These are the men and women who have created the signature sounds that have defined key periods in rock and pop history. Highlights include Trevor Horn on inventing the 'Sound of the Eighties', Lamont Dozier on Motown, and a TV first with legendary producer Tony Visconti taking us through David Bowie's seminal song Heroes.

Narrated by master producer Nile Rodgers.


FRI 23:00 Lemmy: The Movie (b012p5vv)
Film which celebrates the life and rock 'n' roll philosophy of the late Motorhead frontman and bassist Lemmy. Born Christmas Eve 1945 in Stoke and schooled in part on Anglesey, Ian Fraser Willis acquired the name 'Lemmy' while roadying for Jimi Hendrix and co when he hit London in 1967; it comes from the oft repeated saying 'Len' me a quid'.

Lemmy became the bass player in Hawkwind and sang their biggest hit, Silver Machine, before forming his own hard rockin' metal trio Motorhead in the mid-70s, blending punk and primal rock into a foot-to-the-floor, hard driving rock 'n' roll aesthetic which resulted in monster hits like Ace of Spades and the live album No Sleep Til Hammersmith in the early 80s and to which he has remained constantly steadfast.

Joining Lemmy and members of Motorhead to celebrate his life and times are Hawkwind's Dave Brock, Metallica's James Hetfield, Dave Grohl, Alice Cooper, Peter Hook and Jarvis Cocker.


FRI 00:50 Glastonbury (b060fck1)
2015

Motorhead

Mark Radcliffe continues the coverage on day one of Glastonbury 2015 with highlights from the set by rock heavyweights Motorhead, led by their legendary frontman Lemmy on the Pyramid Stage as the band finally make their debut at the world's largest performing arts festival.


FRI 01:25 Top of the Pops (b06yjc20)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]


FRI 02:05 Music Moguls: Masters of Pop (p039x53y)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 today]


FRI 03:05 Sounds of the Eighties (b0074sjk)
Episode 2

Serious and sincere they may have been, never cracking a smile where a tortured, artistic look would do, but this tranche of 80s pop stars know how to make that look work - Eurythmics, Spandau Ballet, Phil Collins, Fine Young Cannibals, Tears for Fears, Suzanne Vega and Simply Red.




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

Alex Higgins: The People's Champion 00:15 SUN (b00tmzfb)

Alex Higgins: The People's Champion 20:00 TUE (b00tmzfb)

American Nomads 02:15 SUN (b01777fp)

Birth of the British Novel 03:00 TUE (b00ydj1p)

Brian Pern 22:00 THU (b06wrhzx)

Brian Pern 02:10 THU (b06wrhzx)

Castles: Britain's Fortified History 20:00 SAT (b04v85sy)

Constable: A Country Rebel 01:00 WED (b04gv42q)

Creation 22:00 MON (b012rfpt)

Danny Baker's Great Album Showdown 00:40 SAT (b01qkvxr)

Duets at the BBC 21:00 FRI (b01c2xwt)

Empire of the Tsars: Romanov Russia with Lucy Worsley 20:00 SUN (b06w0gn7)

Empire of the Tsars: Romanov Russia with Lucy Worsley 21:00 WED (b06wrgzw)

Empire of the Tsars: Romanov Russia with Lucy Worsley 03:00 WED (b06wrgzw)

Glastonbury 00:50 FRI (b060fck1)

Impact! A Horizon Guide to Plane Crashes 23:40 MON (b03d690n)

India's Frontier Railways 19:00 SUN (b05mp8mt)

India's Frontier Railways 22:30 THU (b05nhjht)

Lemmy: The Movie 23:00 FRI (b012p5vv)

Lost Horizons: The Big Bang 23:15 SUN (b00dcbqm)

Majesty and Mortar: Britain's Great Palaces 20:00 THU (b0488trx)

Majesty and Mortar: Britain's Great Palaces 01:10 THU (b0488trx)

Music Moguls: Masters of Pop 22:40 SAT (p039w64c)

Music Moguls: Masters of Pop 22:00 FRI (p039x53y)

Music Moguls: Masters of Pop 02:05 FRI (p039x53y)

Nature's Wonderlands: Islands of Evolution 21:00 MON (b06yjm68)

Nature's Wonderlands: Islands of Evolution 02:40 MON (b06yjm68)

Nature's Wonderlands: Islands of Evolution 23:00 TUE (b06yjm68)

One-Hit Wonders at the BBC 23:40 SAT (b05r7nxx)

Peter and Dan Snow: 20th Century Battlefields 01:15 SUN (b007qjfb)

Pop Go the Sixties 20:45 FRI (b00cvzhf)

Pop Go the Sixties 20:50 FRI (b00cyyqt)

Pop Go the Sixties 20:55 FRI (b00d24n3)

Sorry! 19:30 MON (p00xcgz2)

Sorry! 19:30 TUE (p00xch2t)

Sorry! 19:30 WED (p00xch50)

Sounds of the Eighties 03:05 SAT (b0074shx)

Sounds of the Eighties 03:05 FRI (b0074sjk)

Stories from the Dark Earth: Meet the Ancestors Revisited 19:00 SAT (b01sgx9m)

Stories from the Dark Earth: Meet the Ancestors Revisited 01:00 TUE (b01sgx9m)

Storyville 21:00 SUN (b06yghfw)

The Brain with David Eagleman 21:00 THU (b06y8hyr)

The Brain with David Eagleman 02:40 THU (b06y8hyr)

The Crusades 22:00 TUE (b01bqy7r)

The Crusades 00:00 WED (b01bqy7r)

The Good Old Days 20:00 FRI (b06wrjvt)

The Making of King Arthur 02:00 TUE (b00tg2q2)

The Queen's Castle 21:00 TUE (b00792v0)

The Queen's Castle 22:00 WED (b00792v0)

The Secret Horse: Quest for the True Appaloosa 01:40 MON (b04z21cc)

The Story of Scottish Art 20:00 WED (b06kq6nz)

The Story of Scottish Art 02:00 WED (b06kq6nz)

The World's Most Beautiful Eggs: The Genius of Carl Faberge 00:00 TUE (b0336tf3)

The Young Montalbano 21:00 SAT (b06y89ct)

Timeshift 22:15 SUN (b037w38s)

Timeshift 23:00 WED (b068fvln)

Top of the Pops 01:45 SAT (b06w0s18)

Top of the Pops 02:25 SAT (b06whnr0)

Top of the Pops 19:30 THU (b06y8cnp)

Top of the Pops 23:30 THU (b06y8cnp)

Top of the Pops 19:30 FRI (b06yjc20)

Top of the Pops 01:25 FRI (b06yjc20)

When Pop Ruled My Life: The Fans' Story 00:10 THU (b05wn8hf)

Woolly Mammoth: Secrets from the Ice 20:00 MON (b01fkcdr)

Woolly Mammoth: Secrets from the Ice 00:40 MON (b01fkcdr)

World News Today 19:00 MON (b06wr7hx)

World News Today 19:00 TUE (b06wr7jk)

World News Today 19:00 WED (b06wr7kb)

World News Today 19:00 THU (b06wr7kh)

World News Today 19:00 FRI (b06wr7lf)