TV & Radio

TV and radio listings will be updated every Friday

Archive on Four: 40 Years in Europe – How Was It for You?
Archive on Four: 40 Years in Europe – How Was It for You?
Radio 4
Saturday 5th January, 8.00pm

It’s four decades since Britain joined the EEC. Marking the anniversary, John Sergeant looks at the nation’s relationship with our continental neighbours. Contributors include Bill Newton-Dunn and Michael Welsh, who both recall being among the first elected Euro MPs in 1979 – a bewildering experience, it turns out.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

Tankies: Tank Heroes of World War Two
Tankies: Tank Heroes of World War Two
BBC Two
Sunday 6th January, 9.00pm

Mark Urban, the BBC’s diplomatic editor and a former tank commander, tells the story of six remarkable soldiers who served with the Fifth Royal Tank Regiment during the Second World War. The first of two episodes begins with the retreat towards Dunkirk and also charts the men’s adventures in north Africa.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

Great British Railway Journeys
Great British Railway Journeys
BBC Two
Monday 7th January, 6.30pm

Having lately taken a detour to the continent, Michael Portillo gets back to riding the rails in Blighty. A new series of weekday shows kicks off with the politician turned broadcaster travelling from the Chilterns to west Wales. In the first episode, he sees Shakespeare through Victorian eyes in Stratford-upon-Avon.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

© Dreamstime
Pick of the Week
The Battle for Malta
BBC Two
Monday 7th January, 8.30pm

Between 1940 and 1942, Malta experienced bombing that was worse than Britain had to endure during the Blitz. Close to starving, the islanders nonetheless endured, their hardship reflected in George VI awarding the George Cross to the entire island. James Holland looks back at the siege, and charts Malta’s role in helping the Allies secure victories in north Africa.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website 

The Riviera: A History in Pictures
The Riviera: A History in Pictures
BBC Four
Tuesday 8th January, 9.00pm

Always good company, Richard E Grant charts the French Riviera’s transformation from backwater to top tourist haunt. It’s a transformation that can, in great part, be traced to artists such as Cézanne, Monet and Renoir, and their ‘discovery’ of the region in the late 19th century.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

Find My Past
Find My Past
Yesterday
Tuesday 8th January, 9.00pm

The ‘reverse genealogy’ series returns. The first of five new episodes focuses on the Great Escape, the mass breakout of Allied airmen from Stalag Luft III in March 1944. The sting in the tail here is the brutal execution of recaptured prisoners.

Find out more at the Yesterday website

Spies of Warsaw
Spies of Warsaw
BBC Four
Wednesday 9th January, 9.00pm

Scriptwriters Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais of Porridge fame adapt novelist Alan Furst’s between-the-world-wars espionage tale. David Tennant leads the cast as Jean-François Mercier, a decorated hero from the 1914 conflict now earning a crust as a military attaché in Poland. Spying, violence and romance ensue.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

In Our Time
In Our Time
Radio 4
Thursday 10th January, 9.00am

Melvyn Bragg and learned guests discuss Thomas Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur, the epic tale that did so much to bring the likes of Guinevere, Lancelot and Merlin to the centre of British culture. Many of the book’s tales, we learn, were translated from the French while Malory languished in jail. 

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

Open Country
Open Country
Radio 4
Thursday 10th January, 3.00pm

Jules Hudson heads to the West Midlands for a tramp around some of the region’s historic buildings, aimed at investigating which kinds of structures should be preserved and why. The buildings Hudson visits include medieval Middleton Hall, where restoration efforts have already taken 35 years.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

Italy Unpacked
Italy Unpacked
BBC Two
Friday 11th January, 9.00pm

Art critic Andrew Graham-Dixon and chef Giorgio Locatelli begin another gentle amble around Italy. Not surprisingly, the emphasis here is on paintings and food, but these often prove to be gateways to discussions of wider Italian history. First up, the duo explore Bologna.

Find out more at the BBC TV & Radio programming website

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