TV & Radio

TV and radio listings will be updated every Friday

Servants: The True Story of Life Below Stairs
Servants: The True Story of Life Below Stairs
BBC Two
Friday 12th October, 9.00pm

During the First World War, as men went off to fight, women filled their roles. Having had a taste of different kinds of work, many of these women were reluctant to return to a starch-and-servitude life. As Dr Pamela Cox relates, the era of the live-in servant class was coming to an end.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website 

 

Saturday Drama: Love Me Do
Saturday Drama: Love Me Do
Radio 4
Saturday 13th October, 2.30pm

Riffing off the title of the Beatles’ first single, here’s a romantic drama that plays out against a backdrop of the October 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis. There’s more Fab Fourness in The Casbah: The Birthplace of Merseybeat (Radio 2, Wednesday 17 October, 10.00pm), in which ex-Beatles drummer Pete Best remembers a venue located in his mum’s basement.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

 

Andrew Marr’s History of the World
Andrew Marr’s History of the World
BBC One
Sunday 14th October, 9.00pm

Taking a global view of the middle ages, Andrew Marr largely eschews muddy Europe and instead tells stories of the golden age of Islamic learning, Genghis Khan and Mali’s empire. Meantime, over at Downton Abbey (ITV1, 9.00pm), Edith receives an exciting offer.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

Book of the Week: Nancy – The Story of Lady Astor
Book of the Week: Nancy – The Story of Lady Astor
Radio 4
Monday 15th October, 9.45am

Anna Maxwell Martin reads the first of five extracts from Adrian Fort’s biography of Britain’s first female MP. Another weekday series, China: As History Is My Witness (Radio 4, 1.45pm) finds Carrie Gracie continuing to look at how stories of China’s past help explain the country today.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

World War Two: 1942 and Hitler’s Soft Underbelly
Pick of the Week
World War Two: 1942 and Hitler’s Soft Underbelly
BBC Four
Monday 15th October, 9.00pm

As the 70th anniversary of El Alamein approaches, historian David Reynolds explores the rationale behind the Second World War battles that took place in north Africa and around the Mediterranean. Winston Churchill, he argues, became increasingly obsessed with fighting in a theatre he described as Hitler’s “soft underbelly”.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

The Essay: Anglo-Saxon Portraits
The Essay: Anglo-Saxon Portraits
Radio 3
Monday 15th October, 10.45pm

In a major weeknight series that will eventually run to 30 episodes, scholars and writers profile key figures from the Anglo-Saxon era. First up, Barry Cunliffe focuses on Vortigern, the fifth-century ruler who is reputed to have invited the first Anglo-Saxon invaders, Hengist and Horsa, into Britain.

Find out more at the BBC TV and Radio programming website

Ian Hislop’s Stiff Upper Lip
Ian Hislop’s Stiff Upper Lip
BBC Two
Tuesday 16th October, 9.00pm

The Private Eye editor concludes his series on the British national character by looking at how it’s evolved in the years since the end of the First World War. Britons are now much more self-conscious about the idea of the stiff upper lip, it seems, and generally more blubbery judging by the reaction to Princess Diana’s death in 1997.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

Who Do You Think You Are?
Who Do You Think You Are?
BBC One
Wednesday 17th October, 9.00pm

Former footballer John Barnes traces his family history. He focuses largely on his grandfather, Frank Hill, a writer and political activist who was a key figure in Jamaica’s struggle for independence. The island’s governor, we learn, was so suspicious of Hill that he had him interned in 1942.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

Wartime Farm
Wartime Farm
BBC Two
Thursday 18th October, 8.00pm

The living history series reaches the run-up to D-Day. This had a profound effect on British agriculture because farmers had to increase production of flax, used in parachutes, aircraft fuselages, tents and ropes. Plus the role of racing pigeons during the conflict.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

© Dreamstime
Battle Castle with Dan Snow
Discovery
Thursday 18th October, 9.00pm

Dan Snow visits the Château Gaillard. Originally built by King Richard I to assert his authority over his French holdings, the now ruined building towers over the Seine. In 1203, Philip II of France besieged the castle, part of an effort to push the English from the continent.

Find out more at the Discovery website

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