TV & Radio
TV and radio listings will be updated every Friday
This week’s places with a past include a property near Birmingham, Fairlight, where Greg Rusedski walks an expansive lawn that was probably the birthplace of modern tennis. Other contributors include Rageh Omaar, who visits England’s first mosque, and photographer Rankin, who sees an Edinburgh home central to the story of photography. Presented by Michael Buerk and Bettany Hughes.
The first story in dramatist Mike Walker’s epic chronicle of the Stuart dynasty follows Queen Mary as she arrives in Scotland after a childhood spent in France. Classic Serial: The Stuarts (Radio 4, Sunday 30 June, 3.00pm) explores the life of James I of England and IV of Scotland.
A three-part series looking at key military decisions made by American presidents begins with the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, when the USA and the USSR stood on the brink of nuclear war. Recently released tapes clearly reveal tensions between John F Kennedy and military leaders.
The castle at Lincoln has dominated the city for more than 1,000 years. Over much of this time, it’s served as a place to lock up miscreants. Tony Robinson and cohorts gain access to an archaeological dig conducted as part of a refurbishment of the site.
Best pay attention because, as the Wars of the Roses rage, The White Queen is starting to get rather complicated. In the third episode, Elizabeth is set on vengeance against Warwick over the death of her father and brother, but Edward wants reconciliation. Meantime, there’s news of yet another rebellion and Elizabeth falls pregnant again.
The comedian Rich Hall’s films aren’t exactly intended as history documentaries, but there’s usually plenty about the past as he grapples with his subjects. This time around Hall considers the legacies of the oil industry and the Alamo as he explores what it means to be Texan.
The series that considers parallels between past and present returns with an episode centred on civil unrest. As Turkish prime minister Erdogan faces unrest in Taksim Square, Jonathan Freedland and guests, including Bettany Hughes, look at Emperor Justinian's brutal response to the Nika Riots (AD 532) in Constantinople.
The two-part series in which celebrities learn about the experiences of poverty-stricken forebears concludes. For Felicity Kendall, this means hearing how her great-grandmother, Mary Liddell, was forced into the workhouse after she fell pregnant as the result of an affair.
Ludwig II of Bavaria (1845-86) liked architecture. More specifically, he spent much of his time planning extravagant palaces and a castle, Neuschwanstein, said to have been the inspiration for the Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland. Yet, argues Dan Cruickshank, we shouldn’t view these remarkable structures simply as indulgences.
Classicist Michael Scott concludes his exploration of the world of the ancient Greeks. As with last week’s offering, there’s much here on how what we think we know is often wrong. The Olympics, for example, were brutally contested, a reflection of their huge religious and diplomatic significance.
The series on houses with a history concludes with Michael Buerk and Bettany Hughes counting down the country’s 10 most remarkable buildings. Celebrity contributors include Ronni Ancona, David Jason and Mark Williams. Also this week on ITV1, look out for Robson Green: How The North Was Built (Tuesday 9 July, 9.00pm), which focuses on changes wrought by the industrial revolution.