Radio-Lists Home Now on BBC 4 Contact

Unofficial Weekly Listings for BBC 4 — supported by


SAT 19:00 Full Steam Ahead (b07nwk5h)
Episode 4

It is full steam ahead for historians Ruth Goodman, Alex Langlands and Peter Ginn as they bring back to life the golden age of steam and explore how the Victorian railways created modern Britain.

At the National Railway Museum, Alex and Peter help get the most famous locomotive in the world, the Flying Scotsman, into steam. The team take a ride of a lifetime as the loco travels along its original route, connecting the two most important financial capitals of the empire - London and Edinburgh - and Alex finds out what it is like for catering staff with 250 hungry mouths to feed. Peter heads to the Great Central Railway to find out how the railways revolutionised the delivery of mail right across Britain and is put to task on the travelling post office, where time is of the essence.

The boys visit the Milton Keynes Museum to find out how the railways facilitated the first ever electrical communication service - instantaneous messaging over a hundred years before the arrival of emails. With the railways opening up many new and interesting titled jobs, Ruth finds out what the role of the wheel-tapper entailed and helps to tyre a wheel with a steel band at the South Devon Railway workshop. In Bristol, Alex discovers how the railways were responsible for bringing the nation into sync, as he visits a clock with not one but two minute hands! Meanwhile, Peter learns how the railways brought Britain current news, hot off the press, for the first time.

SAT 20:00 Himalaya with Michael Palin (b0074qpt)
Annapurna to Everest

Michael Palin continues his Himalayan trek. During a Gurkha recruitment Palin is disturbed by Maoist insurgents, but survives to suffer as he climbs to 15,000 feet and sees the majesty of Annapurna Sanctuary. In Kathmandu he is blessed by the Nepalese king before meeting some holy men. Crossing into Tibet he meets his first yaks at the highest monastery in the world before heading up the Rongbuk glacier towards the summit of Everest.

SAT 21:00 Inspector Montalbano (m0005rvj)
The Other End of the Thread

While busy dealing with the arrival of boat migrants from across the Mediterranean, and with the harrowing human tragedy that accompanies them, Inspector Montalbano stumbles upon the brutal murder of a local dressmaker. The murder appears inexplicable. Montalbano must now uncover the secrets behind the victim’s life to get to the truth behind her death.

In Italian with English subtitles.

SAT 22:45 The Beach: Isolation in Paradise (m000n18y)
Series 1

Episode 3

Film-maker Warwick Thornton’s international success has come at a personal cost. He has reached a crossroad in his life and something has to change.

He has chosen to try giving up life in the fast lane for a while to go it alone, on an isolated beach in Western Australia, one of the most beautiful yet brutal environments in the world, to see if the experience can transform and heal his life.

SAT 23:10 The Beach: Isolation in Paradise (m000n190)
Series 1

Episode 4

Film-maker Warwick Thornton’s international success has come at a personal cost. He has reached a crossroad in his life and something has to change.

He has chosen to try giving up life in the fast lane for a while to go it alone, on an isolated beach in Western Australia, one of the most beautiful yet brutal environments in the world, to see if the experience can transform and heal his life.

SAT 23:35 Top of the Pops (m000s4ql)
Anthea Turner presents the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 16 August 1990 and featuring Go West, The KLF and Betty Boo.

SAT 00:05 Hip Hop: The Songs That Shook America (p094pw5z)
Series 1

The Bridge, by Marley Marl and MC Shan

A song designed to foster community pride ignites hip-hop's most epic rap battle.

SAT 00:50 Hip Hop: The Songs That Shook America (p094pwjl)
Series 1

Ladies First, by Queen Latifah

At the height of hip-hop's misogynistic themes, the culture bows down to their queens of rap.

SAT 01:30 Himalaya with Michael Palin (b0074qpt)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]

SAT 02:30 Full Steam Ahead (b07nwk5h)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


SUN 19:00 Victoria: A Royal Love Story (b00rl81c)
Fiona Bruce traces the story of one of history's great royal love affairs: the love between Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. It was a love based on a powerful physical attraction, and it grew into a marriage that set the tone for the Victorian age.

Over the 20 years they spent together, until Albert's tragic death, they gave each other a dazzling collection of paintings, sculptures and jewellery. That collection was on show - much of it for the first time - at a major exhibition in London, and it reveals a new and passionate side of the royal couple.

Fiona meets HRH Prince Charles and travels to the royal palaces that Victoria and Albert made their own, as well as the royal workshops where artworks for the exhibition are being restored, to tell the story behind a collection that is one of the wonders of the nation.

SUN 20:00 Rome: A History of the Eternal City (b01pdt0s)
The Rebirth of God's City

Simon Sebag Montefiore charts Rome's rise from the abandonment and neglect of the 14th century into the everlasting seat of the papacy recognised today. His story takes us through the debauchery and decadence of the Renaissance, the horrors of the Sack of Rome and the Catholic Reformation, through to the arrival of fascism and the creation of the Vatican State. By taking us inside Rome's most sensational palaces and churches and telling the stories behind some of the world's most beloved art, Sebag Montefiore's final instalment is a visual feast.

SUN 21:00 Ireland to Sydney By Any Means (b00dtx93)
Episode 4

Epic journey series, using as many forms of transport as possible.

After a spiritually enriching time in India it's time to head north towards Nepal. The next leg of the journey starts on tuk tuks, one of Boorman's favourite modes of transport. Charley and the team enjoy it so much that they decide to buy one.

Leaving the chaos of the streets, Charley boards a train at Varanasi and is met at Gorakhpur by a tremendous downpour of rain. The team have an easy border crossing and find themselves in the comparatively peaceful land of Nepal, where they take a tractor, a multicoloured local bus and a dugout canoe all the way to the Royal Chitwan National Park.

Charley bonds with an elephant that takes him through remote Nepali villages, before transferring to jeep and travelling over deep valleys and Indiana Jones-style suspension bridges.

Meanwhile in Kathmandu, the King is deposed, and the atmosphere in Nepal's capital is electric as it becomes a republic. Here the team seize the opportunity to go to Everest by helicopter on the 55th anniversary of a mountaineering conquest: the summit of the world's highest mountain.

Eventually making it into China, Charley and the team travel along the Xi Jiang River to Wuzhou on a cement barge. Now running behind schedule due to the swelling of the river, Charley hurries to Yangshuo to see the breathtaking scenery of limestone cliffs, and to ride over this remote and captivating part of the world in a hot air balloon.

SUN 22:00 Britt-Marie Was Here (m000sc9q)
Discovering that her husband of 40 years has been cheating on her, Britt-Marie, at the age of 63, is faced with finding a new purpose in life. Accepting a supremely unglamorous job at a ramshackle youth centre in the backwater town of Borg, she reluctantly takes on the impossible task of coaching the children’s football team to victory.

Despite having no experience and no resources, Britt-Marie is invigorated by the team's infectious energy and, maybe for the first time, allows herself to step out of her comfort zone - and into a potential romance with a charming local police officer.

Comedy drama based on Fredrik Backman's best-selling novel. In Swedish with subtitles.

SUN 23:35 Love Songs at the BBC: A Valentine's Day Special (b00ymh70)
It's a time for guilty pleasures, for courtship, for declarations of love, for looking someone in the eye and whispering sweet nothings, accompanied by a compilation of some of the greatest and squishiest love songs from the likes of Celine Dion, Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes, Jason and Kylie, 10cc and Lionel Richie, all from the Top of the Pops era. If Hot Chocolate and Chaka Khan don't get the temperatures rising, then nothing will.

SUN 00:35 Rome: A History of the Eternal City (b01pdt0s)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]

SUN 01:35 Victoria: A Royal Love Story (b00rl81c)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]

SUN 02:35 Ireland to Sydney By Any Means (b00dtx93)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


MON 19:00 Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore (m000mf8j)
Series 1

Episode 1

How does connecting with the images and sounds of the natural world help us gain a greater sense of ease, perspective and connection?

This first episode is about breathing. By immersing ourselves in images of jellyfish floating, elephants swimming and lemurs swinging through the rainforest, we learn to focus on our breathing and are reminded that we are not separate from the world around us.

What is the relationship between each breath and mindfulness, and why is breathing so important to becoming still and being in the moment?

MON 19:30 The Joy of Painting (m000k48d)
Series 2

High Chateau

American painter Bob Ross unveils a secret little loft, hidden in the woods, surrounded by evergreens and ruffled green bushes and grass.

MON 20:00 Secrets of the Museum (m000g6sp)
Series 1

Episode 6

Inside every museum is a hidden world, and now, cameras have been allowed behind the scenes at the world-famous Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

Only a small part of the two million wonders in the collection are on display to the public. But in this series, we go behind closed doors to explore all the treasures of art, design and performance the museum has to offer.

We follow experts and conservators at work in this treasure trove of the nation’s favourite objects, as they breathe new life into fragile marvels, uncover hidden stories and battle to keep the past alive.

In this instalment, we join Catherine Sargent as she prepares a new exhibition devoted to cars. She must ensure these large objects are displayed at their best, but as with all the vehicles arriving on loan from around the world, it’s imperative that each one is moved into the museum without a scratch.

One of the largest and trickiest to transport is an extraordinary 1962 Chevy Impala, known as ‘Tipsy’, arriving from Los Angeles. It’s a unique car, that’s been painstakingly customised to turn it into a ‘low-rider’.

With its low-slung chassis, gleaming paintwork and personalised motifs, the car was a six-year labour of love for owner Tomas Vasquez. Seeing Tipsy up close before it’s moved into the museum, Catherine has some concern that it will be a tight squeeze getting it into the exhibition space. And with the added pressure of the owner flying into the UK to give his pride and joy one last loving polish before the opening, she has to ensure the move runs without a hitch.

Meanwhile, some of the finest of the V&A’s one-off objects are in the Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert collection, and curator Alice Minter is choosing a selection of her favourites to be displayed in an upcoming exhibition that will tour around the world.

She’s found one rare masterpiece in storage that she thinks is going to be the star of the tour. It’s a tabletop decorated using a technique known as ‘micromosaic’, in which thousands of individually coloured pieces of glass are set into a pattern producing an effect like a painting. The process of making a micromosaic is so intricate that this tabletop would have taken a craftsman years to finish.

But Alice discovers that her beloved table is going to struggle to make the tour, as conservators have discovered cracks and swellings on the surface. X-rays reveal the full damage inside, with holes and corrosion making this object too vulnerable to move anywhere. Conservator Mariam makes the brave decision to conduct an experimental operation to save the tabletop from falling to pieces. She injects grout into the micromosaic, in the hope of gluing together its internal structure. Alice hopes this life-saving surgery will give this masterpiece a chance of going on display and being admired by the public.

Other rare survivors are unearthed in the Rock and Pop archive, as curator Vicky picks out the latest acquisitions for the V&A’s collection of objects relating to The Beatles. She’s interested in some of the animation cels from the groundbreaking movie Yellow Submarine. One of the film’s animators, Malcolm Draper, has been invited in to explain how they were made. It’s important for Vicky to understand the whole story of these objects to help keep alive the craft of drawing animation cels by hand.

Over in textiles conservation, a rare men’s kimono is being repaired so it can be displayed in an upcoming exhibition. Worn by a samurai feudal lord in the late 18th century, Elizabeth-Anne Haldane has discovered rips in its fine inner silk lining near the waist that may have been made by a samurai sword. To have any chance of displaying the chequerboard-patterned kimono on a mannequin, she must delicately dye a patch and sew it into the torn areas.

In the jewellery galleries, conservators and curators are excited to take delivery of a rare buried treasure – a medieval jewel discovered in a field in Northamptonshire by a metal detectorist. The extraordinarily rare ‘cluster brooch’ is made of gold and set with diamonds and a reddish stone called a spinel.

With only seven of its type ever found in the world, this is a special piece. Experienced conservator and gemologist Jo Whalley has the task of giving it a deep clean.

Using a mixture of spit and polish (as saliva contains enzymes that help to degrade soil and dirt), Jo must delicately remove the earth embedded in the jewel to reveal once more the full beauty of this miniature treasure.

MON 21:00 Storyville (m000sc9j)
Whirlybird: Live above LA

Flying high above Los Angeles in a whirling news helicopter, Marika Gerrard and Zoey Tur (then known as Bob) spent the 80s and 90s capturing the city’s most epic breaking news stories. Before the advent of the 24-hour news cycle, this daring husband-and-wife team invested in a helicopter and pilot’s licence, taking their cameras to the sky and changing broadcast news forever.

The cameras not only captured the adrenaline of live news culture, but also the subsequent strain on their relationship and an identity struggle that eventually culminated in a major life transition for Zoey.

A wholly unique take on the story of Los Angeles, told through stunning aerial footage and remarkable home videos, Whirlybird reframes many of the city’s pivotal moments of the 1990s, including the OJ Simpson pursuit and the 1992 riots.

MON 22:30 Retreat: Meditations from a Monastery (b09bdzpf)
Series 1

Downside Abbey

The first film is set in Downside, a spectacular neo-gothic monastery set in the beautiful valleys of Somerset. It is home to fourteen Benedictine monks who live according to the 6th-century Rule of St Benedict. We follow two of the monks over the course of a typical, quiet monastic day, as they engage with carpentry and baking, religious services and moments of private prayer in the monastery gardens.

The pattern of the monks' day has changed little over hundreds of years and this programme encourages us to slow down to their pace, share their silence and eavesdrop on their rituals. Father Michael has been designing and making extraordinary pieces of furniture in his workshop for the past 48 years. He picked up his passion for woodwork from his father - but found when he joined the abbey in his early twenties that it was a role he could embrace and nurture. He's now a master craftsman and is on hand should the abbey need repairs, restorations or any new items of furniture. We watch him working on prie-dieu (a traditional prayer desk), carving, whittling and sawing until it's finished and we watch him use it in private prayer. 'Ora et labora' (prayer and work) is the Benedictine motto.

Father Christopher originally came from Malta where he developed his love of food and in particular bread. He first joined Downside Abbey when he was 24, but stayed only five years. Aged 60, he decided to become a monk again and joined the community for good. We watch him bake a loaf of sourdough bread for lunch, mixing, kneading and baking the dough. He also collects wild garlic from the monastery meadows and makes a garlic butter dish to serve alongside the bread.

Filmed with an eye to the beauty and peace of the ancient surroundings, the film has a painterly quality that creates a feeling of restfulness and quiet contemplation. And by focusing on the natural sounds of nature and the peace of the abbey we have created a meditative soundtrack that adds to this unique experience.

MON 23:30 Turtle, Eagle, Cheetah: A Slow Odyssey (b09ksyb3)
Riding onboard with a cheetah, a green turtle and a white-tailed sea eagle as they show us around their respective homes. With natural sounds and elegant embedded graphics delivering information, this is an immersive journey into their world like no other.

Each section rides onboard with one of the animals as it shows us around its world. Revealing how they go through their daily routines, journey across different parts of their homes and introduce us to the other animals they share them with, in this extraordinary immersive show. A trio of cheetahs hunting on the Namibian bushveld, a green turtle cruising the reefs of Indonesia and a white-tailed sea eagle as it soars above the west coast of Scotland.

All the animals are part of ongoing scientific studies or research projects, they are habituated or trained to carry small, lightweight cameras capable of capturing images in high definition. With often bespoke technology developed and pioneered by research scientists and the teams from Blue Planet II and forthcoming series Animals With Cameras. This is the core of this immersive BBC Four series that reveals the natural world through the perspective of its subjects, and has afforded the scientific community an even deeper understanding of their subjects.

MON 01:00 Handmade in Africa (m000m7j4)
Series 1

Maasai Wedding Necklace

For the Maasai people of the Great Rift Valley, beaded jewellery is of great ceremonial significance. The Maasai are a semi-nomadic tribal group who inhabit much of Kenya and Tanzania. Many Maasai people continue to live traditional, pastoral lives. While the men tend to their cattle, Maasai women care for children, maintain the village buildings, and craft intricate, colourful beaded items. Necklaces, bracelets and headpieces are used in Maasai weddings and coming-of-age ceremonies, but they are also enormously popular with non-Maasai Kenyans and tourists. Over the past few decades, tourist interest in Maasai beads has allowed Maasai women to earn their own money for the first time.

This episode follows Jane Semanto, a master bead maker, as she crafts a traditional Maasai wedding necklace. Like many Maasai, Jane lives a modern life in Nairobi but retains a deep knowledge and reverence for her tribal heritage. The Maasai use beads to signify social and marital status. Colours also hold special importance, signifying elements of the Rift Valley landscape, as well as valued Maasai character traits such as bravery and friendship. During the film, Jane leaves her Nairobi studio to visit her Maasai friends who live a more traditional rural existence. We discover how, for them, bead making not only gives them an income and independence from their husbands, it also fosters a sense of female solidarity

MON 01:30 The Joy of Painting (m000k48d)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]

MON 01:55 Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore (m000mf8j)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]

MON 02:25 Secrets of the Museum (m000g6sp)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


TUE 19:00 Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore (m000mf8z)
Series 1

Episode 2

Join mindfulness expert Andy Puddicombe as he focuses on change and what we can learn from how animals adapt to changes in the world around them. Why is a chameleon's ability to alter its appearance crucial to its survival and what lessons are there from understanding how elephants grieve?

Learning to be mindful can help us cope with life’s stresses, and Andy shows how focusing on the sights and sounds of the natural world can help us deal with change in our lives and how to live in the moment.

TUE 19:30 The Joy of Painting (m000k48n)
Series 2

Country Life

In this masterclass, American painter Bob Ross takes us home to the farm, a big red barn and long, rickety, wooden fence, capturing vivid childhood memories.

TUE 20:00 The Golden Age of Canals (b01173hf)
Most people thought that when the working traffic on canals faded away after the war, it would be the end of their story. But they were wrong. A few diehard enthusiasts and boat owners campaigned, lobbied and dug, sometimes with their bare hands, to keep the network of narrow canals open.

Some of these enthusiasts filmed their campaigns and their home movies tell the story of how, in the teeth of much political opposition, they saved the inland waterways for the nation and, more than 200 years after they were first built, created a second golden age of the canals.

Stan Offley, an IWA activist from Ellesmere Port, filmed his boating trips around the wide canals in the 40s, 50s and 60s in 16mm colour. But equally charming is the film made by Ed Frangleton, with help from Harry Arnold, of a hostel boat holiday on the Llangollen Canal in 1961. There are the films shot by ex-working boatman Ike Argent from his home in Nottinghamshire and looked after by his son Barry.

There is astonishing film of the last days of working boats, some shot by John Pyper when he spent time with the Beecheys in the 60s, film taken by Keith Christie of the last days of the cut around the BCN, and the films made by Keith and his mate Tony Gregory of their attempts to keep working the canals through their carrying company, Midland Canal Transport.

There is film of key restorations, the Stourbridge 16 being talked about with great wit and affection by one of the leading activists in that watershed of restorations in the mid-60s, David Tomlinson, and John Maynard's beautiful films of the restoration of the Huddersfield, 'the impossible restoration', shot over two decades.

All these and more are in the programme alongside the people who made the films and some of the stars of them. Together they tell the story of how, in the years after 1945, a few people fought the government like David fought Goliath to keep canals open and restore ones that had become defunct, and won against all the odds.

TUE 21:00 Britain's Ancient Capital: Secrets of Orkney (b088pnv1)
Episode 2

Orkney - seven miles off the coast of Scotland, and cut off by the tumultuous Pentland Firth, the fastest-flowing tidal race in Europe is often viewed as being remote. However it is one of the treasure troves of archaeology in Britain, and recent discoveries there are turning the Stone Age map of Britain upside down. Rather than an outpost at the edge of the world, recent finds suggest an extraordinary theory - that Orkney was the cultural capital of our ancient world and the origin of the stone circle cult which culminated in Stonehenge.

In the second of this three-part series, Neil Oliver, Chris Packham, Andy Torbet and Dr Shini Somara join hundreds of archaeologists from around the world who have gathered there to investigate at one of Europe's biggest digs.

Andy and some local seafaring volunteers build a boat made of just willow and cow hide and set out to cross the dangerous Pentland Firth as the ancient Orcadians would have done. Neil investigates the extraordinary discovery of some human bones, Chris goes in search of whales and Shini uncovers the powers of the tides.

TUE 22:00 Retreat: Meditations from a Monastery (b09cbc3w)
Series 1

Pluscarden Abbey

Pluscarden Abbey is a remote Benedictine monastery on the edge of the Scottish Highlands in Moray and is home to 21 monks. It is the oldest practising monastery in the United Kingdom, dating back to the medieval era. The monks live by the 6th-century Rule of St Benedict and life has changed little in hundreds of years.

Given its isolated and weather-beaten position, the abbey is almost entirely self-sufficient. The monks grow their own crops, make their own clothes and have little contact with the outside world. Unlike most Benedictine monks who wear a black habit, the monks at Pluscarden Abbey wear white, a symbol of their austerity and strict interpretation of monastic life.

We follow a typical day in the life at Pluscarden Abbey - from the moment one monk knocks on the doors of the brethren and chants in Latin to wake them up for the first service of the day at 4.15am right up to compline, the final service of the day before the monks retire to bed.

Brother Michael is Pluscarden Abbey's resident tailor and weaver. Creating garments is his passion and we watch as he makes a distinctive white habit for another monk - measuring and cutting the material, hand stitching the design on an old sewing machine and finally washing it and presenting it to another monk. He also weaves a striking purple and white stole, a vestment worn around the neck by priests when giving confession, on an antique braid loom housed in one of the abbey's workshops.

Father Benedict served in the British army before becoming a monk at the age of 25. He is Pluscarden Abbey's beekeeper and when he's not attending one of the nine services the monks conduct throughout the day, he can be found at one of the many beehives scattered around the monastery grounds. We follow him as he collects a frame filled with honey from one of the hives and then processes it in his 'honeyhouse' by melting it down and sieving it into jars ready to serve to the other monks at supper. 'Monotonous tasks like going through a beehive are entirely compatible with being in a state of constant prayer.' (Father Benedict)

Filmed with an eye to the beauty and peace of the ancient surroundings, the film has a painterly quality that creates a feeling of restfulness and quiet contemplation. And by focusing on the natural sounds of nature and the peace of the abbey we have created a meditative soundtrack that adds to this unique experience.

TUE 23:00 The Last Igloo (m000cr9s)
Documentary that follows a lone Inuit as he hunts, fishes and constructs an igloo. It tells the story of skills that are disappearing and of how climate change is affecting the lives of Greenland's indigenous people.

With its focus on the ingenious craft of igloo building before it becomes too late to record it, this is a meditative and poetic sensory immersion in a landscape of ice and snow, an elegy to a world that is melting away.

TUE 00:30 Britain and the Sea (b03k2g3r)
Invasion and Defence

David Dimbleby continues his voyage round Britain, sailing his boat Rocket along the south east coast from Hampshire to Kent. This was the front line coast, the edge of Britain essential to its defence and the first point of attack for invasion forces. From the great battleships of Nelson to the sea forts of Henry VIII, this is a story that embraces Britain's darkest and most heroic moments.

TUE 01:30 The Joy of Painting (m000k48n)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]

TUE 02:00 Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore (m000mf8z)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]

TUE 02:30 The Golden Age of Canals (b01173hf)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


WED 19:00 Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore (m000mf8s)
Series 1

Episode 3

Mindfulness is the ability to be present with a clear, calm, curious mind - and feelings of joy can be triggered when this happens. How can watching penguins pinching pebbles, seeing antelope leaping in the air or looking at scenes of summer flowers help us to feel more positive emotionally?

Mindfulness expert Andy Puddicombe takes us on a global journey with imagery that will bring feelings of happiness and wellbeing to the viewer as we immerse ourselves in the sights and sounds of the natural world.

WED 19:30 The Joy of Painting (m000kbty)
Series 2

Western Expanse

Bob Ross creates another masterpiece of powerful clouds, rolling hills and winding river waters using only his special painting knife.

WED 20:00 A Timewatch Guide (b06zdll0)
Series 2

Queen Elizabeth I

Vanessa Collingridge examines the life of Elizabeth Tudor, with particular interest in how documentary television and the BBC has examined her legacy and interrogated her reign. Using Timewatch and other BBC archive stretching back over 60 years, Vanessa looks at her upbringing, her conflicts with her enemies including Mary, Queen of Scots, and her greatest victory against the Spanish Armada. The programme seeks to understand how Elizabeth I created a legacy that we still live with today, and examines how that legacy has changed over the centuries.

WED 21:00 Elizabeth R (p036g8bq)
The Lion's Club

A young Elizabeth lives in dangerous times, leading the Protestant rebellion against her Catholic half-sister Mary and challenging her claim to the throne.

WED 22:25 Retreat: Meditations from a Monastery (b09cbcfm)
Series 1

Belmont Abbey

Belmont Abbey is a Benedictine monastery in Herefordshire on the Welsh border. The monastery itself has a warm and inviting feel which is amplified by the colourful, 19th-century decor inside the building. The monks that we follow at Belmont are true craftsmen - one is a renowned iconographer and one of the best in the western world, while the other creates manuscripts and rosaries.

We follow renowned iconographer Father Alex who travels to Belmont from his native Peru every year to teach his skills. He is the superior of Belmont Abbey's sister monastery in Peru. He uses centuries-old techniques - mixing his own egg tempera paints, using pigments made from semi-precious stones and burnishing gold leaf - to create a striking icon of Archangel Michael, the patron saint of Belmont Abbey.

We also meet Brother Bernard who makes rosaries - a devotional string of beads used in prayer. He uses pliers to link the beads, intricately threading them together to form the set of rosary beads which he then uses in private prayer.

Belmont Abbey's abbot, Father Paul, is responsible for the day-to-day running of the monastery. The majority of his duties are pastoral and religious, including running the services which take place throughout the day, leading the silent meals and creating an environment in which the monks can live and work in peace. He's also a dog lover and can often be seen walking his dog Toby through the monastery grounds. 'A wise man is known by the fewness of his words.' (Rule of St Benedict)

Filmed with an eye to the beauty and peace of the ancient surroundings, the film has a painterly quality that creates a feeling of restfulness and quiet contemplation. And by focusing on the natural sounds of nature and the peace of the abbey we have created a meditative soundtrack that adds to this unique experience.

WED 23:25 All Aboard! New Zealand by Rail, Sea and Land (m000dl2m)
All Aboard! New Zealand by Rail, Sea and Land takes an epic overland train, boat and car journey through New Zealand’s breathtaking landscapes. The voyage beings in Auckland, but the city soon gives way to rolling pastures, volcanic extremes, tranquil waterways, the snowcapped grandeur of the Southern Alps and the beauty of Fiordland.

WED 01:55 The Joy of Painting (m000kbty)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]

WED 02:25 Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore (m000mf8s)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]

WED 02:55 A Timewatch Guide (b06zdll0)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


THU 19:00 Coast (b00xj5s8)
Series 4 Reversions

The Needles: Isle of Wight

Nicholas Crane crosses the Solent to find out what's happened to England's largest island - the Isle of Wight. Once joined to the mainland, this fossil-rich area is a time capsule containing clues to the journey that the whole British Isles has been on and is still making. And so today what we see is the powerful result of a combination of rising sea levels and a sinking landscape.

THU 19:10 Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore (m000mf8f)
Series 1

Episode 4

The natural world offers a constant source of calm and comfort. How do images of hypnotic starling murmurations or macaques relaxing in hot springs in Japan encourage us to slow down? How can we experience more being and less doing?

Mindfulness expert Andy Puddicombe talks us through the process and takes us on an immersive journey around the sights and sounds of resting wildlife all over the planet.

THU 19:40 The Joy of Painting (m000kbv1)
Series 2

Blaze of Colour

An evening sky sets, giving way to a perfect glow - watch a black canvas burst into life under the magic brushes of Bob Ross.

THU 20:10 All Creatures Great and Small (p031d2mw)
Series 1

It Takes All Kinds...

James seems to be falling into the routine of being a country vet, but the peace is shattered when Siegfried employs a secretary and James meets Helen Alderson.

THU 21:00 Edie (m000scgc)
Seeking to fulfil a decades-old dream, Edith Moore, an 83-year-old widow, escapes to Scotland. She grudgingly accepts the help of Jonny, the manager of a struggling shop that sells outdoor gear. He, however, has mixed motives, and fuelling her self-belief proves perilous.

Emotional drama about conquering fears, demons...and a mountain.

THU 22:35 Sheila Hancock Brushes Up: The Art of Watercolours (b00yzgtn)
Watercolours have always been the poor relation of oil painting. And yet the immediacy and freedom of painting in watercolours have made them the art of adventure and action - even war. It has been an art form the British have pioneered, at first celebrating the greatest landscapes of Europe and then recording the exotic beauty of the British Empire.

Sheila Hancock, an ardent fan of watercolours since her childhood and whose father was an amateur watercolourist, sets out on a journey to trace the art form. It takes in the glories of the Alps, the city of Venice and deepest India, as she tracks the extraordinary story of professional and amateur watercolourists, and reveals some of the most beautiful and yet little-known pictures.

THU 23:35 Around the World in 80 Treasures (b0078vlr)
Series 1

Mexico to America

In episode two of Dan Cruickshank's global journey to find the top 80 man-made treasures in history, we travel from the mysteries of ancient Mayan tombs to that great symbol of the modern age - the Statue of Liberty, while taking in the drama of the giant warriors at Tula and the refinement of Thomas Jefferson's elegant home in Virginia. Dan also reveals his first dark treasures of this monumental journey - the ruthlessly efficient killer, the 1851 Navy Colt – the handgun that 'won' the west for the white man – and comes face to face with the 'Controller of the Universe' in Mexico City.

Elsewhere in Mexico, deep inside the pyramids of Palenque, Dan finds the great tomb of King Pacal. Even more surprising is the early civilisation of North America at Mesa Verde, where the clifftop people created a brilliant landscape that looks like something from outer space. From there it's an extraordinary leap to the high rise drama of Manhattan and the skyscraper that changed the world.

THU 00:35 Storyville (m000sc9j)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Monday]

THU 02:05 The Joy of Painting (m000kbv1)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:40 today]

THU 02:35 Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore (m000mf8f)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:10 today]


FRI 19:00 Top of the Pops (m000scfy)
Nicky Campbell presents the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 23 August 1990 and featuring The Human League, Tina Turner and Cliff Richard.

FRI 19:30 Top of the Pops (m000scg0)
Mark Goodier presents the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 30 August 1990 and featuring Aswad, Sonia and Betty Boo.

FRI 20:00 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.

FRI 21:00 TOTP2 (b00sfz04)
80s Special

Mark Radcliffe presents a look back at some of the most memorable Top of the Pops performances from the 80s including Adam Ant, Kylie and Jason, Culture Club, Bucks Fizz, Yazz, Duran Duran and Wham!

FRI 22:00 The Kemps: All True (p087qvkf)
Rhys Thomas interviews the Gary and Martin Kemp about their lives and careers following Spandau Ballet’s 40th anniversary celebrations. As well as looking back at their musical history, the film reveals Gary and Martin’s other passions. Martin attempts to launch new film franchise, The Hardest British Bastards of the Galaxy, and Gary has his own vegan meat-substitute, Wonge.

FRI 23:00 Boy George's 1970s: Save Me from Suburbia (b07z7y5v)
British popstar Boy George recalls, revisits and assesses how the 1970s moulded the person and artist he has become. This is his musical, social and sexual coming of age, when he discovered the power of his own sexuality before setting about turning that persona into a popstar. Set against a backdrop of social discord, disenfranchisement and sexual repression, the 70s was also conversely the decade that revelled in colour and creative chaos, giving the world glam rock, disco and punk, and the young George O'Dowd was at the birth of them all. The documentary includes contributions from contemporaries like Martin Degville (Sigue Sigue Sputnik), Andy Polaris (Animal Nightlife), DJ Princess Julia and popstar Marilyn.

Boy George says: 'I think of the 70s as being this glorious decade where I discovered who I was and discovered all these amazing things - punk rock, electro music, fashion, all of that. And yeah of course there was that dark side to the 70s, the rubbish, the strikes, the poverty, and I'd get chased and confronted for the way I looked. But I was a teenager. I didn't have any time for misery. I was just having a great time with my friends.'.

FRI 00:00 The New Romantics: A Fine Romance (b007btt3)
Culture Club, Spandau Ballet, Visage, Marilyn, Adam and the Ants, Duran Duran, ABC... At the dawn of the 80s, a whole host of strangely dressed men in make-up burst forth onto the music scene brandishing synthesisers and kicking against the visual ugliness of punk.

They came mainly from the London club scene, led by gender-bending host Steve Strange and pioneering electronic DJ Rusty Egan, and conquered the charts with classic tracks such as Do You Really Want to Hurt Me, To Cut a Long Story Short, Kings of the Wild Frontier, Planet Earth, Fade to Grey, Calling Your Name and Poison Arrow.

Magenta Devine narrates this gay and colourful behind-the-scene documentary of sex and drugs and frocks and hair-rollers, which includes interviews with Boy George, Gary Kemp, Adam Ant, Nick Rhodes, Steve Strange, Rusty Egan, Marilyn, Jonathan Ross, Caryn Franklin, Fiona Bruce and Robert Elms.

FRI 00:50 Indie & Beyond with Shaun Ryder and Alan McGee (b0bn6xl4)
Happy Mondays frontman Shaun Ryder and Creation Records boss Alan McGee reveal a selection of their all-time favourite tracks.

From first jobs to private jets, longtime friends Ryder and McGee unpack the songs that formed the soundtrack to their lives.

In an hour of eclectic tunes, Shaun Ryder also discovers his lost Top of the Pops appearance and Alan McGee declares an alternative Scottish national anthem.

Theirs is a blistering playlist of indie, punk and ska classics from Buzzcocks to The Specials, Junior Murvin to Marc Bolan, Orange Juice to Underworld and many more.

FRI 01:50 Boy George's 1970s: Save Me from Suburbia (b07z7y5v)
[Repeat of broadcast at 23:00 today]

FRI 02:50 One-Hit Wonders at the BBC (b05r7nxx)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]

(Note: the times link back to the details; the pids link to the BBC page, including iPlayer)

A Timewatch Guide 20:00 WED (b06zdll0)

A Timewatch Guide 02:55 WED (b06zdll0)

All Aboard! New Zealand by Rail, Sea and Land 23:25 WED (m000dl2m)

All Creatures Great and Small 20:10 THU (p031d2mw)

Around the World in 80 Treasures 23:35 THU (b0078vlr)

Boy George's 1970s: Save Me from Suburbia 23:00 FRI (b07z7y5v)

Boy George's 1970s: Save Me from Suburbia 01:50 FRI (b07z7y5v)

Britain and the Sea 00:30 TUE (b03k2g3r)

Britain's Ancient Capital: Secrets of Orkney 21:00 TUE (b088pnv1)

Britt-Marie Was Here 22:00 SUN (m000sc9q)

Coast 19:00 THU (b00xj5s8)

Edie 21:00 THU (m000scgc)

Elizabeth R 21:00 WED (p036g8bq)

Full Steam Ahead 19:00 SAT (b07nwk5h)

Full Steam Ahead 02:30 SAT (b07nwk5h)

Handmade in Africa 01:00 MON (m000m7j4)

Himalaya with Michael Palin 20:00 SAT (b0074qpt)

Himalaya with Michael Palin 01:30 SAT (b0074qpt)

Hip Hop: The Songs That Shook America 00:05 SAT (p094pw5z)

Hip Hop: The Songs That Shook America 00:50 SAT (p094pwjl)

Indie & Beyond with Shaun Ryder and Alan McGee 00:50 FRI (b0bn6xl4)

Inspector Montalbano 21:00 SAT (m0005rvj)

Ireland to Sydney By Any Means 21:00 SUN (b00dtx93)

Ireland to Sydney By Any Means 02:35 SUN (b00dtx93)

Love Songs at the BBC: A Valentine's Day Special 23:35 SUN (b00ymh70)

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore 19:00 MON (m000mf8j)

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore 01:55 MON (m000mf8j)

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore 19:00 TUE (m000mf8z)

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore 02:00 TUE (m000mf8z)

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore 19:00 WED (m000mf8s)

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore 02:25 WED (m000mf8s)

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore 19:10 THU (m000mf8f)

Mindful Escapes: Breathe, Release, Restore 02:35 THU (m000mf8f)

One-Hit Wonders at the BBC 20:00 FRI (b05r7nxx)

One-Hit Wonders at the BBC 02:50 FRI (b05r7nxx)

Retreat: Meditations from a Monastery 22:30 MON (b09bdzpf)

Retreat: Meditations from a Monastery 22:00 TUE (b09cbc3w)

Retreat: Meditations from a Monastery 22:25 WED (b09cbcfm)

Rome: A History of the Eternal City 20:00 SUN (b01pdt0s)

Rome: A History of the Eternal City 00:35 SUN (b01pdt0s)

Secrets of the Museum 20:00 MON (m000g6sp)

Secrets of the Museum 02:25 MON (m000g6sp)

Sheila Hancock Brushes Up: The Art of Watercolours 22:35 THU (b00yzgtn)

Storyville 21:00 MON (m000sc9j)

Storyville 00:35 THU (m000sc9j)

TOTP2 21:00 FRI (b00sfz04)

The Beach: Isolation in Paradise 22:45 SAT (m000n18y)

The Beach: Isolation in Paradise 23:10 SAT (m000n190)

The Golden Age of Canals 20:00 TUE (b01173hf)

The Golden Age of Canals 02:30 TUE (b01173hf)

The Joy of Painting 19:30 MON (m000k48d)

The Joy of Painting 01:30 MON (m000k48d)

The Joy of Painting 19:30 TUE (m000k48n)

The Joy of Painting 01:30 TUE (m000k48n)

The Joy of Painting 19:30 WED (m000kbty)

The Joy of Painting 01:55 WED (m000kbty)

The Joy of Painting 19:40 THU (m000kbv1)

The Joy of Painting 02:05 THU (m000kbv1)

The Kemps: All True 22:00 FRI (p087qvkf)

The Last Igloo 23:00 TUE (m000cr9s)

The New Romantics: A Fine Romance 00:00 FRI (b007btt3)

Top of the Pops 23:35 SAT (m000s4ql)

Top of the Pops 19:00 FRI (m000scfy)

Top of the Pops 19:30 FRI (m000scg0)

Turtle, Eagle, Cheetah: A Slow Odyssey 23:30 MON (b09ksyb3)

Victoria: A Royal Love Story 19:00 SUN (b00rl81c)

Victoria: A Royal Love Story 01:35 SUN (b00rl81c)