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



SATURDAY 22 SEPTEMBER 2018

SAT 19:00 Secrets of our Living Planet (b01kvm72)
Waterworlds

Secrets of Our Living Planet showcases the incredible ecosystems that make life on Earth possible. Using beautifully shot scenes in the wild, Chris Packham reveals the hidden wonder of the creatures that we share the planet with, and the intricate, clever and bizarre connections between the species, without which life just could not survive.

Discover previously unknown relationships, like why a tiger needs a crab, or why a gecko needs a giraffe. Each week Chris visits one of our planet's most vital and spectacular habitats and dissects it to reveal the secrets of how our living planet works.

In this episode, Chris travels across the world, from Iceland to Brazil, to Bangladesh and the Maldives. His aim: to reveal the secrets of our watery habitats, fresh and salty.

The extra ingredients, carried in water and necessary for life, are oxygen and sediment. But it's how the animals manage these resources that determines whether a habitat can actually support much live.

In the Brazilian Pantanal, Chris witnesses a riot of life, in a land where everything seems to be a giant: the snakes, the big cats, the otters, the fish - even the lilies! The reason? Well, it comes down to a very unassuming mollusc, the apple snail.

In the Sunderbans swamp of Bangladesh, Chris shows us how crabs create an environment fit for mangroves, deer and tigers. In the Maldives, he meets the hero of the coral reef - the sponge. And in the deep ocean, Chris meets the biggest (or smallest) hero of them all. Plankton not only feed our ocean giants, they even influence our atmosphere and climate.


SAT 20:00 Big Cats (p05q59zk)
Series 1

Episode 1

In Ruaha, Tanzania, lions form huge super prides in order to hunt giants. Amongst cats lions are unusual, the only one to live in groups. In numbers they find the strength and audacity to hunt the most formidable prey.

In Sri Lanka a tiny rusty-spotted cat explores his forest home - 200 times smaller than a lion, the rusty-spotted is the smallest of all cats, but just as curious.

The Canada lynx lives further north than any cat, relying on snowshoe hares to survive the bitterly cold winters. Until now, lynx were creatures of mystery, but now technology provides an insight
into their secret lives.

Predators they may be, but cats are also tender, intelligent and emotional. Honey is an African leopard and a mother. For a decade she's worn a radio collar that has allowed scientists to follow her life's every twist and turn. Now in the worst drought in decades, she's battling to raise a cub.

In the Himalayas, perhaps the world's most lonesome cat is searching for a mate - a male snow leopard, who may get just one chance to mate in his whole life.

Cats are naturally secretive, elusive and cryptic animals. Only now have the latest developments in filming technology, and a surge in cat research, enabled us to bring the cat superstars out of the shadows.


SAT 21:00 Mystery Road (b0bl5l7q)
Series 1

Gone

Australian drama series. Seeking a missing young man, taciturn detective Jay Swan finds an outback community fractured by secrets. Practical local cop Emma James accepts Jay's abilities, but not his methods, as he and other outsiders disrupt things in town.


SAT 21:55 Mystery Road (b0bl5ljx)
Series 1

Blood Ties

Australian drama series featuring indigenous investigator Jay Swan, a mistrustful lawman. Two arrivals on the bus bring past crimes to the fore, while Emma and Jay now have a pair of young men to find.


SAT 22:50 Timeshift (b0080t62)
Series 7

Gagging For It - TV's Hunger for Radio Comedy

Since its earliest days, television has looked to radio comedy for the 'next big thing'. Radio hits from Hancock's Half-Hour to Little Britain have become TV classics. But other long-running radio favourites have died a death on the screen. So what makes for a sure-fire transfer? Time Shift investigates, with the help of favourite clips from the archive and insights offered by Jon Culshaw, Clive Anderson, Barry Cryer, Marcus Brigstocke, and Mitchell and Webb.


SAT 23:50 Top of the Pops (b0bl26sm)
Janice Long and Dixie Peach present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 24 April 1986. Featuring The S.O.S Band, The Grange Hill Cast, Aurra, George Michael, Madonna and Queen.


SAT 00:20 Great Guitar Riffs at the BBC (b049mtxy)
Compilation of BBC performances featuring some of the best axe men and women in rock 'n' roll, from Hendrix to The Kinks, Cream to AC/DC, The Smiths to Rage Against the Machine and Radiohead to Foo Fighters. Whether it is The Shadows playing FBI on Crackerjack, Jeff Beck with The Yardbirds, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Cream's Sunshine of Your Love from their final gig, Pixies on the Late Show, AC/DC on Top of the Pops or Fools Gold from The Stone Roses, this compilation is a celebration of rock 'n' roll guitar complete with riffs, fingerstylin', wah-wah pedals and Marshall amps.


SAT 01:20 Secrets of our Living Planet (b01kvm72)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


SAT 02:20 Big Cats (p05q59zk)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



SUNDAY 23 SEPTEMBER 2018

SUN 19:00 Leeds International Piano Competition (b0bl5m8j)
2018 Highlights

Highlights from the prestigious competition in Leeds, presented by Petroc Trelawny.

Five finalists from around the world go head to head armed only with piano concertos played with the Halle Orchestra.

What are the judges looking for? What are the pressures of these competitions? And who will emerge with the first prize which includes guaranteed performances in Liverpool, Leeds and Manchester as well as a recording and international dates.

Held every three years since 1963, this 19th edition is likely to see a new star launched into the piano firmament.


SUN 20:30 What Do Artists Do All Day? (b03z08ms)
Antony Gormley

Sir Antony Gormley is one of the world's most popular artists. His iconic Angel of the North is a universally-admired work of public art and his sculptures have been seen by millions in cities all over the world.

In this film we follow Gormley and his team in their busy Kings Cross studio, preparing a work called Tanker Field - a group of 60 enormous steel figures that are to be shown together at the Paul Klee museum in Bern. Reflecting on the ideas behind his sculptures, the collaborative nature of his studio and the excitement he still feels as new projects come together, the film offers an intimate and fascinating insight into one of the great artists of our time.


SUN 21:00 James May's Cars of the People (b0467lv5)
Series 1

Episode 2

James May downsizes to explore the weird world of the microcar.

He discovers how austerity and fears of congestion led to European tragicomic disasters in the shape of Britain's infamous three-wheelers, French deathtraps and German absurdities. James takes to the battlefield to settle one of the greatest rivalries in car history and travels to Japan for an urban race between a state-of-the-art micro sports car and the best-selling vehicle in history.


SUN 22:00 A Timewatch Guide (b052vcbg)
Series 1

Roman Britain

Using years of BBC history archive film, Dr Alice Roberts explores how our views and understanding of Roman Britain have changed and evolved over the decades.

Along the way she investigates a diverse range of subjects from the Roman invasion, through Hadrian's Wall, the Vindolanda tablets and the eventual collapse of Roman rule. Drawing on the work of archaeologists and historians throughout the decades, Alice uncovers how and why our views of this much-loved period of our history have forever been in flux.


SUN 23:00 Roger Bannister: Everest on the Track (b07lxs4s)
On 6 May 1954, Roger Bannister became the first man to run a mile in under four minutes. He was the epitome of Britain's disappearing scholar-athlete ideal.

The lunchtime-trained runner, immersed in his medical school studies, injected a booster shot into Britain's flagging but still flickering morale. This documentary is as much an historical study of Britain's search for something to erase the woes of the Second World War as it is a fresh look at the story of the quest for the first four-minute mile, previously deemed physically impossible. The story is told by Sir Roger himself, his rival John Landy, Seb Coe and the late Chris Chataway - Bannister's friend and pacesetter - among many others.


SUN 00:00 The Last Explorers (b017zqnn)
John Muir

Neil Oliver follows in the footsteps of four Scottish explorers who planted ideas rather than flags - ideas that shaped the modern world we know today.

Set in the spectacular Yosemite Valley in California, this is the story of the father of the modern conservation movement and one of the founders of America's National Park movement. John Muir was a 19th-century adventurer who explored the natural world and devoted his life and work to persuade others to see the sacred beauty of his discoveries.


SUN 01:00 Treasures of Ancient Greece (b05ql1sf)
The Age of Heroes

In the first episode Alastair Sooke explores the surprising roots of Greek art, beginning his journey in Crete at the palace of Knossos, legendary home of the Minotaur. He travels to Santorini to the 'Greek Pompeii', and finds gold in the fabled stronghold of Mycenae and dazzling remains from Greece's Dark Ages. Alastair discovers the beginnings of a defining spirit in Greek art, embracing mythology, a passion for symmetry, and an obsession with the human body.


SUN 02:00 Pappano's Classical Voices (b062hmz6)
Mezzo-Soprano

Series in which conductor Sir Antonio Pappano (music director of the Royal Opera House since 2002) explores the great roles and the greatest singers of the last hundred years through the prism of the main classical voice types - soprano, tenor, mezzo-soprano, baritone and bass. Through discussion, demonstrations and workshops, Pappano explores every aspect of the art of great singing.

The lowest female voice type, and the one closest to a woman's natural speaking voice, the mezzo-soprano only rarely plays the name part. But when she does - in Carmen, Samson et Dalila, and La Cenerentola - the fireworks begin. More often, she is the rival, and the villainess.

Antonio explores the particular effect the mezzo voice has on the audience. Her low, sultry tones make her voice perfect for the earth goddess, but also the enchantress, the siren. But she has to sing nearly as high as the soprano. So how does she do it? What is the 'chest voice' and what effect does it have? How do you sing ugly to convey the evil of a character without destroying your voice, and at the same time unearth some redeeming qualities?

Antonio finds out what makes the mezzo tick by looking at great performances from Giulietta Simionato, Kathleen Ferrier, Marian Anderson, Shirley Verrett, Cecilia Bartoli and Lorraine Hunt Lieberson, and taking soundings from Janet Baker, Christa Ludwig, Joyce DiDonato, Felicity Palmer and Sarah Connolly.


SUN 03:00 James May's Cars of the People (b0467lv5)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



MONDAY 24 SEPTEMBER 2018

MON 19:00 Beyond 100 Days (b0bl5rcl)
Series 1

24/09/2018

The latest on US deputy attorney general Rod Rosenstein, who is expected to be fired over disparaging remarks he made about President Trump. Christian Fraser and Katty Kay talk to a lawyer specialising in sexual assaults about claims against supreme court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. Plus, the man responsible for rebuilding Nick Faldo's swing gives his take on Tiger Woods's success.


MON 19:30 Johnny Kingdom's Year with the Birds (b00vnf8g)
Episode 1

Johnny Kingdom, gravedigger-turned-amateur filmmaker spends a year recording the bird life in and around his home on his beloved Exmoor.

Johnny has spent three years creating a wildlife habitat on his 52-acre patch of land on the edge of Exmoor. He's been busy nailing nest boxes on tree trunks, planting a wildflower meadow, dredging his pond, putting up remote cameras and wiring them up to a viewing station in his cabin on the land - all the time hoping against hope that not only will he attract new wildlife but also that he will be able to film it.

This year he is turning his attention to the bird life, hoping to follow some of the species he finds near his home and on his land, across the seasons. We see the transitions from the lovely autumn mists of the oak wood, through the sparkling snow-clad landscape of a north Devon winter, into spring's woodland carpet of bluebells and finally the golden glow of early summer.

The bulk of the series is from Johnny's own camera. Don't expect the Natural History Unit - instead expect passion, enthusiasm, humour and an exuberant love of the landscape and its wildlife.

The series begins at the end of autumn, with Johnny clearing out bird boxes and sorting out his new remote cameras in preparation for the winter. There are two birds in particular that he wants to film - the great spotted woodpecker and the wren. But the harsh winter looks as if it could spell trouble for the wrens and it will be spring before Johnny knows how well they have fared.

He has better luck with the woodpecker and eventually finds their roost. Meanwhile, at home, he struggles to get shots of a mistle thrush as his wife Julie and his neighbours disturb this shy bird as it feasts on a rowan tree.


MON 20:00 South Pacific (b00ks63z)
Endless Blue

A large part of the remote, blue wilderness of the South Pacific is a marine desert. Many animals that live in the ocean - among them sharks, whales and turtles - must go to extraordinary lengths to survive. Tiger sharks travel hundreds of miles to feast on fledging albatross chicks and, every year, sperm whales journey from one side of the South Pacific to the other in their search for food and mates. Theirs is a journey that can end in tragedy.

But the South Pacific is not all desert. New Zealand's super-rich coast supports huge pods of acrobatic dolphins; its coral reefs are some of the most diverse on earth; and there are few places richer in wildlife than the quirky Galapagos Islands, home to tropical penguins and surfing sea lions.

Using the greatest shipwreck story of all time - an event that inspired Moby Dick - the huge challenges of survival in this seemingly endless blue ocean are revealed.


MON 21:00 Oceans Apart: Art and the Pacific with James Fox (b0blhn4t)
Series 1

New Zealand

Concluding the series on the clash between the West and Pacific peoples and cultures, James Fox explores how New Zealand's indigenous Maori people resisted colonisation and marginalisation and maintained their distinctive culture, so much so that it is now an integral part of modern New Zealand.

He encounters some of the greatest works of Maori carving, from the exquisitely painted paddles given to Captain Cook, to works by one of the great masters of Maori art, Tene Waitere, and shows how, from the beginning of their encounters with Europeans, the Maori adapted outside influences, whether it was modern firearms or the new religion of Christianity and produced fascinating hybrid work that ranges from elaborately carved rifle butts to a Madonna and child statue adorned with the Ta Moko, the sacred Maori facial tattoo.

Today, James Fox finds Maori culture in the midst of a full-scale Renaissance, embraced not only by the Maori themselves but all New Zealanders.


MON 22:00 Handmade in the Pacific (b0blhnjs)
Series 1

Pou

Maori master carver Logan Okiwi Shipgood crafts a beautiful 6ft tall 'pou' statue from native New Zealand timber. With chainsaws, adzes, and around 30 chisels, Logan gradually reveals the figure of Hene Te Akiri, a Maori warrior princess, as he lovingly chips away at the wood. Inlaid with sacred shells and given a powerful facial tattoo to denote her social rank, the finished statue is finally revealed to the public.

Logan explores the deep spiritual connection between Maori carvers and the objects they create, and the significance of his home - Rotorua - in the revival of Maori art and culture in the 20th century. For Maori today, carving remains a key way of telling stories and honouring ancestors, and Logan - an internationally famous sculptor and carver - is proud to be doing his bit to keep these traditions alive.


MON 22:30 The Brecon Beacons with Iolo Williams (b06ynxk8)
Series 1

Autumn

Autumn is the season when the landscape is at its most colourful. Iolo Williams finds himself in the midst of a flock of thousands of fieldfares arriving from Europe to escape the colder continent. They gorge themselves on berries in trees surrounding the smallest church in Wales. In the Usk Valley, bats feed before they hibernate in caves, and migrating ducks gather on Talybont Reservoir, ready for winter. Underground, cave spiders are lurking, and sea trout are heading upstream to spawn in the rivers.


MON 23:00 Romancing the Stone: The Golden Ages of British Sculpture (b00yvsjd)
Children of the Revolution

'Sculpture has changed more in the last hundred years,' says Alastair Sooke, 'than in the previous thirty thousand.' The third and last episode of the series tells the dramatic story of a century of innovation, scandal, shock and creativity.

It begins with the moment at the turn of the 20th century when young sculptors ceased visiting the Elgin Marbles at the British Museum and looked instead at the 'primitive' works of Africa and the Pacific islands. The result was an artistic revolution spearheaded by Eric Gill and Jacob Epstein that would climax in the anti-sculptural gestures of Gilbert & George and Damien Hirst.

Yet for all the provocation and occasional excesses of conceptualism, sculpture has never enjoyed such popularity. From the memorials of World War One to the landmarks of Antony Gormley and Rachel Whiteread, sculpture remains the art form that speaks most directly and powerfully to the nation.

The programme climaxes with a series of encounters between Alastair and leading sculptors Damien Hirst, Rachel Whiteread, Antony Gormley and Anthony Caro.


MON 00:00 Mountain (b0b1xs2d)
Jaw-dropping exploration of our obsessions with high places and how they have come to capture our imagination. Only three centuries ago, climbing a mountain would have been considered close to lunacy. The idea scarcely existed that wild landscapes might hold any sort of attraction. Peaks were places of peril, not beauty. Why, then, are we now drawn to mountains? Filmed by the world's leading high-altitude cinematographers and set to a specially curated musical performance by the Australian Chamber Orchestra, Mountain captures the fierce beauty of some of the world's most treacherous landscapes and the awe they inspire.


MON 01:00 Bought with Love: The Secret History of British Art Collections (b0376y1l)
The Pioneers

Britain's country houses are home to astonishing world-class art collections full of priceless old masters and more. In this three-part series art historian Helen Rosslyn opens the doors of some of our most impressive country houses to tell the story of how so many great paintings came to Britain and of the adventurous men and women who brought them here.

In the first episode she reveals the immense influence of the 17th-century pioneer collectors such as Thomas Howard, the 'Collector' Earl of Arundel, King Charles I and his entourage known as the Whitehall Group. Rosslyn explores how this group also brought a taste for the Baroque to Britain, commissioning continental artists such as Rubens, Van Dyck and later Antonio Verrio.

Featuring Verrio's extraordinary Hell Staircase at Burghley House in Cambridgeshire, as well as highlights from the collections at Arundel Castle in Sussex and Wilton House in Wiltshire, the series offers not only a visual treat but a surprising narrative to our national treasures.


MON 02:00 South Pacific (b00ks63z)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


MON 03:00 Oceans Apart: Art and the Pacific with James Fox (b0blhn4t)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



TUESDAY 25 SEPTEMBER 2018

TUE 19:00 Beyond 100 Days (b0bl5pv4)
Series 1

25/09/2018

Katty Kay in Washington and Christian Fraser in London return to report on the events that are shaping the world.


TUE 19:30 Johnny Kingdom's Year with the Birds (b00vtz42)
Episode 2

Johnny Kingdom, gravedigger-turned-amateur film-maker spends a year recording the bird life in and around his home on his beloved Exmoor.

Johnny has spent three years creating a wildlife habitat on his 52-acre patch of land on the edge of Exmoor. He has been busy nailing nest boxes on tree trunks, planting a wildflower meadow, dredging his pond, putting up remote cameras and wiring them up to a viewing station in his cabin on the land - all the time hoping against hope that not only will he attract new wildlife but also that he will be able to film it.

This year he is turning his attention to the bird life, hoping to follow some of the species he finds near his home and on his land, across the seasons. We see the transitions from the lovely autumn mists of the oak wood, through the sparkling snow-clad landscape of a north Devon winter, into spring's woodland carpet of bluebells and finally the golden glow of early summer.

The bulk of the series is from Johnny's own camera. Do not expect the Natural History Unit - instead expect passion, enthusiasm, humour and an exuberant love of the landscape and its wildlife.

Spring has arrived and it is the busiest time of year for the birds. Johnny tries to film as many of them that are nesting on his land as he can. The great spotted woodpeckers have abandoned their roosting site and found a new tree to nest in, but with 20 acres of woodland Johnny will have his work cut out to find it.

He also fixes remote cameras in place to film the nests of bluetits, blackbirds and swallows, but a period of unusually hot weather spells disaster for some of them. On a happier note, Johnny is delighted when a pair of Canada geese nest on the island on his pond and hatch out five goslings.


TUE 20:00 A Very British Romance with Lucy Worsley (b06hht8v)
Episode 2

Lucy Worsley journeys into the Victorian way of love in the second part of her series on the changing face of British romance. She discovers how medieval chivalry shaped Victorian courtship, and explores the influence of valentine's cards and flowers on romantic lives.

Lucy uncovers the way that literary passions - in novels by writers such as Charlotte Bronte, Mrs Henry Wood and HG Wells - translated into real-life desires, changing the way the British felt. This is a new view of the Victorians in love, which takes us from romance on the factory floor to the curious erotic possibilities of the seance.


TUE 21:00 Life Story (p026vg7w)
Series 1

First Steps

David Attenborough brings us the universal
story that unites each of us with every animal on the planet, the story of
the greatest of all adventures - the journey through life. For animals there
is just one goal in life - to continue their bloodline in the form of
offspring, the next best thing to immortality. The series shows how animals
attempt to overcome the challenges that face them at each of the six crucial
stages of life as they strive towards ultimate success. In the first
episode, animals overcome their first great hurdle - surviving infancy.
Flightless barnacle goose chicks face their greatest challenge at the very
start of their lives. In order to find food they must leap 400 feet down a
cliff, from the ledge where they hatched. Young fur seals in New Zealand
have found the perfect place to learn how to avoid predators like killer
whales. Instead of swimming out to sea they have discovered a stream that
leads into the forest and ends at a magical splash pool below a waterfall.
Here the youngsters learn together in perfect safety. The little-known
long-eared jerboa, deep in the Gobi desert, has the largest ears relative to
its body of any animal on earth. On its first night alone it learns how to
use its astonishing hearing to detect insect prey in the darkness. Albatross
chicks make their first flight from the Pacific island where they were born,
but huge tiger sharks are waiting for any that misjudge and land on the
sea.


TUE 22:00 The Silent War (b03lnswn)
The Russians Are Coming!

Throughout the 1970s and 80s, the front line of the Cold War was hidden beneath the ocean. Submariners from three navies - American, Soviet and British - played a deadly game of cat and mouse in a secret war of espionage and intimidation. The nuclear balance between East and West was constantly shifting. This was a constant struggle to gain technological advantage, and the Soviets developed submarines that were ever more sophisticated - bigger, faster and more luxurious - than any developed by the West.

For over 40 years the details of this tense stand-off have been a closely guarded secret. Now submariners from all three navies are able to talk more openly than ever before. They reveal how the underwater arms race took ballistic missiles beneath the Arctic ice, and they remember how it nearly ended in nuclear disaster at sea.


TUE 23:00 Hidden Histories: Britain's Oldest Family Businesses (b03slwfr)
Durtnell the Builder

Alex Durtnell's family have been builders for over 400 years. We follow Alex as he travels back through the centuries and rediscovers the houses his family have built, right back to the reign of Elizabeth I.

Narrated by Margaret Mountford.


TUE 00:00 Tales from the National Parks (b01708v7)
Loch Lomond and the Trossachs

What happens when gold is discovered in the hills around a tiny Scottish village? In the final episode of the series, Richard Macer spends a year in the small remote community of Tyndrum, where gold fever has gripped the residents. The Loch Lomond Park Authority will decide whether to give permission for the gold mine, and there are lots of organisations that think Scotland's first gold mine is an abhorrent idea.

The villagers are adamant that the gold mine is the only way prosperity can be brought to their struggling community and they are determined to get the mine approved. But who wins is down to the park board members who are due to vote on the goldmine at a hearing in the village hall.


TUE 01:00 The Girl Who Talked to Dolphins (b046w2n8)
Documentary telling the story of the most extraordinary experiment in the history of animal science. In the 1960s, a powerful and charismatic scientist flooded a house. He then invited a young woman to live there full-time with a dolphin. Their intention was the ultimate in animal research - they wanted to teach the dolphin to speak English. What happened next would change all their lives. For the first time those involved in the experiment reveal the secrets of the Dolphin House.


TUE 02:00 Life Story (p026vg7w)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


TUE 03:00 A Very British Romance with Lucy Worsley (b06hht8v)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



WEDNESDAY 26 SEPTEMBER 2018

WED 19:00 Beyond 100 Days (b0bl5pvl)
Series 1

26/09/2018

Katty Kay in Washington and Christian Fraser in London return to report on the events that are shaping the world.


WED 19:30 Johnny Kingdom's Year with the Birds (b00vzz1g)
Episode 3

Johnny Kingdom, gravedigger-turned-amateur filmmaker spends a year recording the bird life in and around his home on his beloved Exmoor.

Johnny has spent three years creating a wildlife habitat on his 52-acre patch of land on the edge of Exmoor. He's been busy nailing nest boxes on tree trunks, planting a wildflower meadow, dredging his pond, putting up remote cameras and wiring them up to a viewing station in his cabin on the land - all the time hoping against hope that not only will he attract new wildlife but also that he will be able to film it.

He is turning his attention to the bird life, hoping to follow some of the species he finds near his home and on his land, across the seasons. We see the transitions from the lovely autumn mists of the oak wood, through the sparkling snow-clad landscape of a north Devon winter, into spring's woodland carpet of bluebells and finally the golden glow of early summer.

The bulk of the series is from Johnny's own camera. Don't expect the Natural History Unit - instead expect passion, enthusiasm, humour and an exuberant love of the landscape and its wildlife.

As spring moves into summer, Johnny is relieved to find a healthy brood of wren chicks and heartened to see that some adults did survive the cold winter. He is thrilled with his footage of swallow chicks, but now faces the challenges of getting close-up shots of the woodpecker chicks and finding a pair of barn owls to film.

Johnny's old friend Bob tries to help out with the woodpecker chicks by fixing a camera on a long pole and Johnny returns to one of his old hides in an attempt to film owl chicks. While Bob's camera brings mixed results, the owl footage is an overwhelming success.


WED 20:00 How the Wild West Was Won with Ray Mears (b045nz9q)
Deserts

Ray Mears looks at how the landscapes of America's five great deserts challenged the westward push of the early pioneers.

As Ray travels through the cold high mountain Great Basin desert and the hot Sonoran desert of southern Arizona, he discovers how their hostile geography and rich geology shaped the stories of fortune hunting and lawlessness in the Wild West, and were the setting for the last wars between the US Army and the Apache warrior tribes.

Ray's journey begins in Monument Valley, whose dramatic desert landscape has become synonymous with the Wild West years. He explores how plants and animals survive in this waterless climate and how the Navajo Indian people adapted to the conditions. In Tucson, he meets up with desert coroners Bruce Anderson and Robin Reineke, who show him how the desert still kills people today.

He explores how the Apache adapted their warfare methods to the desert and how the US cavalry struggled in the hot arid landscape. In Tombstone, he gets to grips with the myths around lawmakers and lawlessness and how it flourished in the remote desert regions of the Old West. He discovers how this forbidding landscape was the perfect refuge for bandits and pursues the outlaw trail to Butch Cassidy's hideout at Robber's Roost. His journey ends with the story of Geronimo's surrender which marked the end of the Indian Wars, and of the Old West.


WED 21:00 Ian Hislop's Olden Days (b0426kjz)
Green Imagined Land

Ian Hislop explores the rural olden days - an idealised vision of the countryside - in this concluding film of his series exploring Britain's obsession with the past.

Despite an overwhelmingly urban existence over the last 150 years, the British have increasingly looked to the supposedly timeless, unchanging countryside. It has inspired some of Britain's greatest writers and painters, and been just as influential in popular culture. It's no accident, Ian believes, that one of the most successful First World War recruitment posters used in British cities was of thatched cottages and rolling hills - with its slogan 'Isn't this worth fighting for?'.

Ian begins by looking at the emergence of a rural fantasia in the hugely popular, excessively sentimental works of the Victorian watercolourist Myles Birket Foster. He discovers how the musician Cecil Sharp kickstarted the revival of folk music and dance in the early 20th century and how morris dancing was used to rehabilitate soldiers on the Western Front.

Between the wars, swathes of the English countryside were built over, including Sarehole, a village just outside Birmingham and childhood home to JRR Tolkien. Tolkien immortalised the struggle between a rural arcadia (the Shire) and an industrial dystopia (Mordor) in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings.

After 1945, Britain briefly turned its back on the rural olden days and looked to the future. Even the countryside had to be modernised, so the BBC created The Archers to promote the latest agricultural techniques. But as Archers actress Tamsin Greig tells Ian, it is now most loved for celebrating the things - like a sense of community - we feel we have lost.

Loss, Ian shows, dominates Britain's relationship with the countryside. Philip Larkin's 1972 poem Going, Going suggests our fears for its demise actually reflect our own sense of mortality. It is a theme Ian considers in Larkin's Hull and in his own childhood haven, the Sussex Downs.

To conclude, Ian reflects on the irony that some of Britain's most cherished landmarks from the olden days were once reviled. Victorian critic John Ruskin led a fierce campaign to halt the construction of the Headstone Viaduct in Monsal Dale. Today it is one of the highlights of the Peak District. Might we, Ian wonders, one day make heritage attractions of wind farms and fracking sites?


WED 22:00 Empire (p00p138b)
A Taste for Power

Jeremy Paxman traces the story of the greatest empire the world has ever known: the British Empire. In the first programme, he asks how such a small country got such a big head, and how a tiny island in the North Atlantic came to rule over a quarter of the world's population. He travels to India, where local soldiers and local maharajahs helped a handful of British traders to take over vast areas of land. Spectacular displays of imperial power dazzled subject peoples and developed a cult of Queen Victoria as Empress, mother and virtual God. In Egypt, Jeremy explores the bit of Empire that never was, as Britain's temporary peace-keeping visit turned into a seventy year occupation. He travels to the desert where Lawrence of Arabia brought a touch of romance to the grim struggle of the First World War. As Britain came to believe it could solve the world's problems, he tells the story of the triumphant conquest of Palestine by Imperial troops - and Britain's role in a conflict that haunts the Middle East to this day.


WED 23:00 Sex, Lies and Love Bites: The Agony Aunt Story (b0555vjj)
Psychotherapist and agony aunt Philippa Perry presents a witty and revealing look at the problem page's enduring appeal. In the documentary Philippa picks her way through three centuries of advice on broken hearts, cheating partners and adolescent angst to uncover a fascinating portrait of our social history.

She talks to fellow agony aunts and uncles like the Telegraph's Graham Norton and the Sun's Deidre Sanders about their experiences, as well as exploring the work of advice columnists past, like the 17th-century inventor of the problem page, John Dunton. The advice may change, but she discovers that, when it comes to subjects like love and courtship, the same old problems keep on cropping up.

Through the work of generations of advice columnists Philippa charts the developing battle of the sexes, the rise of the middle classes and a revolution in social attitudes. For much of the 20th century, agony aunts avoided any mention of trouble in the bedroom. Philippa explores the pioneering work of agony aunts like Claire Rayner, who began to offer frank sex advice in the 1960s. Today, sex takes pride of place on the problem page, as Philippa discovers for herself when she takes a starring role in the Sun's photo casebook, which is famous for its real-life problems illustrated with pictures of semi-clad ladies.

At a time when advice is more easily available than ever before, Philippa reflects on why agony aunts are often still our first port of call, and on what makes reading about other people's problems so irresistible.


WED 00:00 A Very British Airline (b046sby4)
Episode 2

For many years London to New York has been the most glamorous and profitable route in BA's long-haul network. This was the route made famous by Concorde, and even today BA's JFK terminal caters for more of the rich and famous than anywhere else.

This looks at the heart of BA's New York operations to discover what it takes to keep the 28 flights a day running smoothly on this all-important route, even as the worst winter on record causes cancellations and delays.

At the other extreme, BA is opening a new route to the Chinese city of Chengdu. China is a key new market, but BA is well behind its rivals and having to learn fast how to cope with the unique challenges of operating in mainland China.

Back at Heathrow, the cabin crew trainees reach the moment of truth. Will they all make it through the course or will some of them learn the hard way that they aren't quite what BA considers the right stuff?


WED 01:00 Infested! Living with Parasites (b03vrwj8)
Dr Michael Mosley explores the bizarre and fascinating world of parasites by turning his body into a living laboratory and deliberately infesting himself with them. He travels to Kenya to give himself a tapeworm - a parasite that can grow to many metres inside the human gut. He also encounters lice, leeches and the deadly malaria parasite, before swallowing a pill-camera to reveal what is growing within him. By the end of his infestation Michael learns a new-found respect for these extraordinary creatures, which can live off and even take control of their hosts for their own survival.


WED 02:00 Handmade in the Pacific (b0blhnjs)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Monday]


WED 02:30 How the Wild West Was Won with Ray Mears (b045nz9q)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



THURSDAY 27 SEPTEMBER 2018

THU 19:00 Beyond 100 Days (b0bl5pw3)
Series 1

27/09/2018

Katty Kay in Washington and Christian Fraser in London return to report on the events that are shaping the world.


THU 19:30 Top of the Pops (b0blhsnc)
Janice Long and John Peel present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 08 May 1986. Featuring Patti La Belle and Michael McDonald, Spitting Image, Billy Ocean, Falco, and Whitney Houston.


THU 20:00 Andrew Marr on Darwin's Dangerous Idea (b00j6r1b)
Born Equal?

Andrew Marr discovers something surprising about his own evolutionary history as this epic series continues with an exploration of Darwin's impact on politics and society.

Under the banner of Survival of the Fittest, Darwin's theory of natural selection has been used to justify imperial expansion and the oppression of indigenous peoples; to inform the science of eugenics - the selective breeding of humans which was implemented in the United States in the early 20th century; and to provide a veneer of scientific respectability to Nazi plans to create an Aryan master race. It was also used quite explicitly to explain the twisted logic of the final solution.

But Andrew Marr also finds a kind of redemption for Darwin's theory of evolution. After the Second World War, it was a founding idea behind the democratic, anti-racist values of the United Nations. More recently, it has also been used to help eliminate a fatal genetic disease from the Orthodox Jewish community in Brooklyn. Marr goes on to consider the difficult social and political choices presented by predictive DNA testing - the final frontier of Darwin's Dangerous Idea.


THU 21:00 Hollywood's Brightest Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story (b09jhrlt)
Documentary about Hollywood wild-child Hedy Lamarr. Fleeing to America after escaping her Nazi sympathiser husband, Hedy Lamarr conquered Hollywood. Known as 'the most beautiful woman in the world', she was infamous for her marriages and affairs, from Spencer Tracy to JFK. This film rediscovers her not only as an actress, but as the brilliant mind who co-invented 1940s wireless technology.


THU 22:25 Experiment Perilous (b0074r22)
Drama. Following the sudden death of a fellow traveller, Hunt Bailey is drawn into the sinister world surrounding a beautiful woman - a woman who has become the object of a maniacal obsession.


THU 23:55 Blood and Gold: The Making of Spain with Simon Sebag Montefiore (b06rwgp7)
Conquest

In the first episode, Simon explores Spain's early years, its emergence as the battleground of empires and its golden age under the Cordoba Caliphate.


THU 00:55 Top of the Pops (b0blhsnc)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]


THU 01:25 Drills, Dentures and Dentistry: An Oral History (b05p7194)
Professor Joanna Bourke charts how, over the past five centuries, dentistry has been transformed from a backstreet horror show into a gleaming modern science.

During her journey into dentistry's past, Joanna uncovers how a trip to the dentist's in medieval England could mean much more than a haircut, reveals how a First World War general's toothache would transform British oral surgery, and discovers the strange story of how the teeth of soldiers killed at Waterloo ended up in the mouths of London's rich.


THU 02:25 Andrew Marr on Darwin's Dangerous Idea (b00j6r1b)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



FRIDAY 28 SEPTEMBER 2018

FRI 19:00 World News Today (b0bl3h67)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


FRI 19:30 Top of the Pops (b0blht78)
Gary Davies and Peter Powell present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 22 May 1986. Featuring Jaki Graham, Billy Ocean, Simply Red, Spitting Image, The B52's, Patti La Belle and Michael McDonald, The Matchroom Mob and Chas & Dave.


FRI 20:00 Chas & Dave: Last Orders (b01nkdsv)
Documentary which highlights cockney duo Chas & Dave's rich, unsung pedigree in the music world and a career spanning 50 years, almost the entire history of UK pop. They played with everyone from Jerry Lee Lewis to Gene Vincent, toured with The Beatles, opened for Led Zeppelin at Knebworth - and yet are known mainly just for their cheery singalongs and novelty records about snooker and Spurs.

The film also looks at the pair's place among the great musical commentators on London life - and in particular the influence of music hall on their songs and lyrics.

The film crew followed Chas & Dave on their final tour, having called it a day after the death of Dave's wife, and blends live concert footage with archive backstory, including some astonishing early performances and duets with the likes of Eric Clapton. Among the experts and zealous fans talking about their love of the duo are Pete Doherty, Jools Holland and Phill Jupitus. Narrated by Arthur Smith.


FRI 21:00 The Story Of... (b0074fbj)
Series 1

Pulp's Common People

Documentary series uncovering the stories behind famous songs. This edition looks at Pulp's Britpop anthem Common People. Jarvis Cocker goes back to St Martin's College, where he met the girl who would inspire him to write a song that examines class, politics and Britain in the 90s. Pulp reunite at their old rehearsal rooms above a pottery shop to reminisce about the song's success and what the track means to them.


FRI 22:00 Can You Feel It - How Dance Music Conquered the World (b0blhtcs)
Series 1

The Club

This episode celebrates the club. From Studio 54, The Loft and Paradise Garage to Shoom, illegal raves, The Hacienda, Cream and on to the contemporary megaclub brands in Las Vegas and Ibiza.

Telling the story of how club culture went from shady Chicago lofts to desert casinos. Along the way we learn about the pioneering sound systems that powered the clubs that transitioned disco into house.

Studio 54 DJ Nicky Siano takes us to see the last Richard Long system - in a fairground on Coney Island. Paul Oakenfold takes us to the place he considers to be the birthplace of modern day dance culture - a back alley in Streatham, south London. New Order members Stephen Morris and Bernard Sumner recall the trip that led to the birth of The Hacienda.

We end with the multi-billion dollar business of modern clubbing where huge dance events dominate and clubbers in Las Vegas can pay $50,000 for a table by the dance floor. Has the corporate dance experience killed the true meaning of clubbing?


FRI 23:00 Country Queens at the BBC (p028vwnv)
Classic female country stars in action on a variety of BBC studio shows and featuring Bobbie Gentry, Anne Murray, Emmylou Harris, Tammy Wynette, Billie Jo Spears, Crystal Gayle, Taylor Swift, Lucinda Williams with Mary Chapin Carpenter and more. A chronological celebration of country queens at the BBC whether on Top of the Pops, OGWT, Later with Jools Holland, Parkinson or their own entertainment specials.


FRI 00:00 Top of the Pops (b0blht78)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]


FRI 00:30 Pop Charts Britannia: 60 Years of the Top 10 (b01nwfxs)
Documentary chronicling our ever-changing love affair with the British singles chart on the occasion of its sixtieth anniversary. From the first NME chart in 1952, via Pick and Top of the Pops to home-taping the Radio One chart show and beyond, we have measured out our lives to a wonderful churn of pop driven, unbeknownst to us, by a clandestine world of music biz hustle. Featuring contributions by 60 years of BBC chart custodians from David Jacobs to Reggie Yates, chart fans Grace Dent and Pete Paphides and music biz veterans Jon Webster and Rob Dickins.


FRI 02:00 Gregory Porter's Popular Voices (b09g67l9)
Series 1

Crooners & Co

Soul and jazz star Gregory Porter explores the soft, intimate art of crooning. Born with the arrival of the microphone in the 1930s, crooning was initially about men seducing women and thrived through signature stars like Bing Crosby, Nat King Cole and Frank Sinatra.

But far from disappearing with the advent of rock 'n' roll, the art of crooning gained a new existential edge and was transformed by the likes of Roy Orbison, David Bowie and even Lana Del Rey into a haunting and abiding strain of contemporary pop.

With Iggy Pop, Joshua Homme, George Benson and Beck.


FRI 03:00 The Story Of... (b0074fbj)
[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 Timewatch Guide 22:00 SUN (b052vcbg)

A Very British Airline 00:00 WED (b046sby4)

A Very British Romance with Lucy Worsley 20:00 TUE (b06hht8v)

A Very British Romance with Lucy Worsley 03:00 TUE (b06hht8v)

Andrew Marr on Darwin's Dangerous Idea 20:00 THU (b00j6r1b)

Andrew Marr on Darwin's Dangerous Idea 02:25 THU (b00j6r1b)

Beyond 100 Days 19:00 MON (b0bl5rcl)

Beyond 100 Days 19:00 TUE (b0bl5pv4)

Beyond 100 Days 19:00 WED (b0bl5pvl)

Beyond 100 Days 19:00 THU (b0bl5pw3)

Big Cats 20:00 SAT (p05q59zk)

Big Cats 02:20 SAT (p05q59zk)

Blood and Gold: The Making of Spain with Simon Sebag Montefiore 23:55 THU (b06rwgp7)

Bought with Love: The Secret History of British Art Collections 01:00 MON (b0376y1l)

Can You Feel It - How Dance Music Conquered the World 22:00 FRI (b0blhtcs)

Chas & Dave: Last Orders 20:00 FRI (b01nkdsv)

Country Queens at the BBC 23:00 FRI (p028vwnv)

Drills, Dentures and Dentistry: An Oral History 01:25 THU (b05p7194)

Empire 22:00 WED (p00p138b)

Experiment Perilous 22:25 THU (b0074r22)

Great Guitar Riffs at the BBC 00:20 SAT (b049mtxy)

Gregory Porter's Popular Voices 02:00 FRI (b09g67l9)

Handmade in the Pacific 22:00 MON (b0blhnjs)

Handmade in the Pacific 02:00 WED (b0blhnjs)

Hidden Histories: Britain's Oldest Family Businesses 23:00 TUE (b03slwfr)

Hollywood's Brightest Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story 21:00 THU (b09jhrlt)

How the Wild West Was Won with Ray Mears 20:00 WED (b045nz9q)

How the Wild West Was Won with Ray Mears 02:30 WED (b045nz9q)

Ian Hislop's Olden Days 21:00 WED (b0426kjz)

Infested! Living with Parasites 01:00 WED (b03vrwj8)

James May's Cars of the People 21:00 SUN (b0467lv5)

James May's Cars of the People 03:00 SUN (b0467lv5)

Johnny Kingdom's Year with the Birds 19:30 MON (b00vnf8g)

Johnny Kingdom's Year with the Birds 19:30 TUE (b00vtz42)

Johnny Kingdom's Year with the Birds 19:30 WED (b00vzz1g)

Leeds International Piano Competition 19:00 SUN (b0bl5m8j)

Life Story 21:00 TUE (p026vg7w)

Life Story 02:00 TUE (p026vg7w)

Mountain 00:00 MON (b0b1xs2d)

Mystery Road 21:00 SAT (b0bl5l7q)

Mystery Road 21:55 SAT (b0bl5ljx)

Oceans Apart: Art and the Pacific with James Fox 21:00 MON (b0blhn4t)

Oceans Apart: Art and the Pacific with James Fox 03:00 MON (b0blhn4t)

Pappano's Classical Voices 02:00 SUN (b062hmz6)

Pop Charts Britannia: 60 Years of the Top 10 00:30 FRI (b01nwfxs)

Roger Bannister: Everest on the Track 23:00 SUN (b07lxs4s)

Romancing the Stone: The Golden Ages of British Sculpture 23:00 MON (b00yvsjd)

Secrets of our Living Planet 19:00 SAT (b01kvm72)

Secrets of our Living Planet 01:20 SAT (b01kvm72)

Sex, Lies and Love Bites: The Agony Aunt Story 23:00 WED (b0555vjj)

South Pacific 20:00 MON (b00ks63z)

South Pacific 02:00 MON (b00ks63z)

Tales from the National Parks 00:00 TUE (b01708v7)

The Brecon Beacons with Iolo Williams 22:30 MON (b06ynxk8)

The Girl Who Talked to Dolphins 01:00 TUE (b046w2n8)

The Last Explorers 00:00 SUN (b017zqnn)

The Silent War 22:00 TUE (b03lnswn)

The Story Of... 21:00 FRI (b0074fbj)

The Story Of... 03:00 FRI (b0074fbj)

Timeshift 22:50 SAT (b0080t62)

Top of the Pops 23:50 SAT (b0bl26sm)

Top of the Pops 19:30 THU (b0blhsnc)

Top of the Pops 00:55 THU (b0blhsnc)

Top of the Pops 19:30 FRI (b0blht78)

Top of the Pops 00:00 FRI (b0blht78)

Treasures of Ancient Greece 01:00 SUN (b05ql1sf)

What Do Artists Do All Day? 20:30 SUN (b03z08ms)

World News Today 19:00 FRI (b0bl3h67)