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



SATURDAY 25 DECEMBER 2021

SAT 00:48 Shipping Forecast (m0012r81)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


SAT 01:00 Selection of BBC World Service Programmes (m0012r83)
BBC Radio 4 presents a selection of news and current affairs, arts and science programmes from the BBC World Service.


SAT 05:34 Shipping Forecast (m0012r85)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


SAT 05:43 Prayer for the Day (m0012r89)
A spiritual comment and prayer to begin the day with Rev Azariah France-Williams, priest, author and broadcaster.

Merry Christmas, these words refer to the festival of the divine interruption - the arrival of one known as the Prince of Peace into a chaotic and tumultuous world

In 1914 with the outbreak of World War One Pope Benedict the 15th called for a truce on Christmas day, to allow the troops on all sides to cease hostilities and take time to worship.

His request to the various governments fell on deaf ears. On Christmas Eve however, British soldiers heard carol singing coming from the German trenches.

At first the British soldiers feared a trap but seeing a couple of unarmed soldiers approaching across No Man’s Land they too cautiously crawled out, and by and large a truce was declared for Christmas.

Men sang carols together, they drank together. The iconic image of that moment was the spontaneous football game which was played between the sides. A British soldier, named John Ferguson, recounted : “Here we were laughing and chatting to men whom only a few hours before we were trying to kill!”

It was a glimpse of the power of the Christmas story to create friends out of enemies. On that day the peace of Christmas triumphed over the brutality of war.

And on this day we celebrate the hope-filled Christmas message of light entering the darkness and the darkness not overcoming it.

Child of Christmas on this day,

Make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love. Where there is injury, pardon. Where there is doubt, faith. Where there is despair, hope. Where there is darkness, light. Where there is sadness, joy.

Amen


SAT 05:45 Four Thought (m0012qxg)
Brain Matters

Beth Stevens talks about the brain cells most people have never heard of, and suggests what they might have to teach us.

Beth is a neuroscientist and associate professor at Harvard Medical School, who in 2015 was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship - the so-called 'genius grant' - for her work on microglial cells. In this talk she describes the connections between her research and her own family history, and explains why these cells - for so long overlooked in favour of neurons - may be the key to understanding much about the brain we don't yet know.

Producer: Giles Edwards


SAT 06:00 News and Papers (m0012rth)
The latest news headlines. Including the weather and a look at the papers.


SAT 06:05 Tweet of the Day (b03k6slx)
Robin

David Attenborough presents the robin. Christmas cards became popular around 1860 and robins often featured, carrying letters in their beaks or lifting door-knockers and were often referred to as the 'little postmen'. Until 1861, postmen wore red coats and were nick-named redbreasts or Robins, so the association between a familiar winter bird and the person who brought Christmas greetings was irresistible.

Tweet of the Day is a series of fascinating stories about our British birds inspired by their calls and songs.


SAT 06:07 Open Country (m0012q6d)
Bright lights and bees at Blenheim

In this edition of Open Country, Helen Mark explores the landscape at Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire. The 2000 acres of parkland were landscaped by Capability Brown, and are now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The grounds are also home to a Site of Special Scientific Interest, and earlier this year a colony of rare bees was discovered in its ancient woodland - surviving descendants of indigenous honeybees which were previously thought to have been wiped out. There are also 12,000 acres of farmland, where a new project is underway to try and make the estate carbon neutral. As dusk falls, Helen winds her way though Blenheim's illuminated trail, where more than a million sparkling lights and lasers light up the winter landscape.

Produced by Emma Campbell


SAT 06:30 Farming Today (m0012rtk)
Christmas Panto

Every day, hundreds of thousands of people around the world watch a Wiltshire farmer as he lets out his animals into the farmyard. Chris Franklin from Marsh Farm is known as the “chatty farmer” and his videos of the animals’ morning rush-hour have gone viral.

Chris and his wife Helie have turned the dairy farm in Devizes where he grew up into a centre for education, working with schools, care homes and community groups. Caenhill Countryside Centre has more than 300 animals, from poultry and pigs, to goats, sheep and cows, even emus!

The farm’s now a charity, and relies on volunteers to help run it. They have around three quarters of a million followers on social media. They’re putting on a Christmas panto, which they’ll share with viewers in more than 50 different countries.


SAT 06:57 Weather (m0012rtm)
The latest weather reports and forecast


SAT 07:00 Gardeners' Question Time (m0012rhy)
GQT at Home: A Partridge in a Pear Tree

Accompanying you this Christmas, Kathy Clugston hosts the gardening panel show. Bob Flowerdew, Christine Walkden, and Matthew Pottage are on hand to answer the gardening queries.

Alongside the usual mulch of gardening goodies - a how-to on home-growing parsnips and skirret, a plant that tastes like an oyster, and the curious appearance of a partridge in a pear tree - Kathy brings humour in the form of the now-traditional GQT cracker jokes.

Providing us with some trimmings foraged from the great outdoors, Matt Biggs speaks to the team in charge of growing the Christmas tree for Windsor Castle, and Chris Beardshaw shares the folklore of that familiar festive flora, the holly or ilex.

Producer - Hannah Newton
Assistant Producer - Bethany Hocken

A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4


SAT 07:45 Taste: My Life Through Food by Stanley Tucci (m0012r8c)
Episode 5

Award-winning actor, director and gourmand Stanley Tucci shares his intimate memoir of a life with food at its heart.

When cancer treatment is followed by the logistical nightmare of feeding multiple generations through lockdown, Stanley delights in reconnecting with his sense of taste.

Written and read by Stanley Tucci
Abridged by Eileen Horne
Producer: Eilidh McCreadie


SAT 08:00 With Great Pleasure (m0012r7x)
With Great Pleasure at Christmas

It's not often a library is filled with laughter but this is no ordinary library as we discover when we visit Barry Humphries in his favourite room at home. He’s joined by two very good friends, Miriam Margolyes and Rob Brydon who also share Barry’s love of poetry and prose. From childhood favourites to more recent discoveries, the threesome reminisce, recall encounters with writers and poets and read extracts from amongst others Charles Dickens, Edith Nesbit and Stephen Spender. A surprise guest joins them on the telephone adding their very own splash of Christmas magic. There’s also a tale about a dahlia, a word or two from Jeeves and Wooster and a festive burst of carol singing.
Produced for BBC Audio in Bristol by Sarah Blunt


SAT 09:00 Christmas Service (m0012rtp)
A service recorded by Christians in Bethlehem especially for Radio 4. Preacher: The Rev’d Dr Jack Sara, President of Bethlehem Bible College and a pastor of the Jerusalem Alliance Church, who was born and raised in the Old City of Jerusalem. The life of Jesus comes alive to visitors and residents of the Holy Land alike. Members of the college tell the story of Christmas Day from the sites where they believe the events might well have taken place; the birth in a humble dwelling, the shepherds' vision of angels on the hillside. They also speak of the importance of reconciliation in the Holy Land, a major part of the ministry of Bethlehem Bible College. With music from Bethlehem Bible College and Christian traditions around the world. Leader: Shireen Awwad Hilal. Technical assistance in Bethlehem: Ala Khouri.

Producer: Philip Billson.


SAT 09:45 Things That Made the Modern Economy (m000cmr4)
Santa Claus

Consumerism and Christmas have gone hand in hand for a surprisingly long time. Santa Claus was an advertising icon in the 1840s, and Macy's department store in New York stayed open until midnight on Christmas Eve in 1867. In a seasonal edition of Fifty Things That Made The Modern Economy, Tim Harford explores the history of Christmas consumerism across the years and around the world.

Producer: Ben Crighton
Editor: Richard Vadon


SAT 10:00 Saturday Live (m0012rtr)
Mark Strong

In this festive edition of Saturday Live, Richard Coles and Nikki Bedi are joined by the actor Mark Strong, who has made a name playing villains in some of Hollywood's biggest blockbusters, including Sherlock Holmes, Shazam and Cruella. He drops by to talk about darkly comic medical drama Temple. Comedian Fatiha El-Ghorri discusses her journey from homelessness to being one of the most exciting stand up comedians in the country. We hear about your new Christmas traditions, from socially distanced carol concerts to Christmas day curries. Plus we hear the Inheritance Tracks of 'what I call' national treasure Patricia Hodge.

Producer: Tim Bano


SAT 11:00 Moominland Midwinter (m0012rtt)
Starring John Finnemore and Samantha Bond. Moomintroll wakes in the middle of winter, when the rest of his family are hibernating, and Moominvalley is deep in snow. Anxious and alone, he is forced to venture out into a frozen world, where he has to find new friends, cope with new dangers, and learn to live in a new and hostile environment.

Gradually he learns to accept the strange and sometimes frightening conditions in which he finds himself. He survives the Great Cold, and comes to terms with his failure to learn to ski (a useful lesson for listeners of all ages).

He makes many mistakes, and when refugees arrive in Moominvalley, fleeing the cold, will he do the right thing, or is it all a bit much?

Cast:
Moomintroll ….. John Finnemore
The Narrator ….. Samantha Bond
Too-ticky ….. Rakie Ayola
Little My ….. Clare Corbett
The Hemulen ….. Richard Goulding
Moominmamma ….. Ann Bryson
Sorry-oo ….. Farshid Rokey
Salome / Snorkmaiden ….. Jasmine Naziah Jones
Squirrel / Fillyjonk / Wolf / Moominpappa ….. David Holt

Written by Tove Jansson
Adapted by Robin Brooks

Director / Producer: Fiona McAlpine
Sound Design: Lucinda Mason Brown

An Allegra production for BBC Radio 4

Picture credit: © Moomin Characters™


SAT 12:00 News Summary (m0012rtw)
National and international news from BBC Radio 4, including the shipping forecast.


SAT 12:04 Short Works (m0012rty)
Daddy Christmas

An original short story specially commissioned by BBC Radio 4 from the Northern Irish author Paul McVeigh. As read by Tony Flynn.

Born in Belfast, Paul McVeigh has written comedy, essays, flash fiction, a novel, plays and short stories. His work has been performed on radio, stage and television, and published in seven languages. Paul co-founded the London Short Story Festival and is an associate director at Word Factory. His debut novel 'The Good Son' won The Polari First Novel Prize and The McCrea Literary Award. He is also the editor of The 32: Irish Working Class Voices, Queer Love: An Anthology of Irish Fiction and Belfast Stories.

Writer: Paul McVeigh
Reader: Tony Flynn
Producer: Michael Shannon

A BBC Northern Ireland production.


SAT 12:18 Dead Ringers (m0012nyr)
Christmas Specials 2021

The Multiverse Special

A "Today programme" special which takes a satirical look back at recent events in alternative earths around the multiverse. There are worlds in which England attempts to break free from the yoke of Scottish rule, the most serious pandemic is man flu, Love Island is an important world power, Ronnie Corbett is worshipped as a god and TV series Succession is also wildly popular - but not as you would know it.

Performed by Jon Culshaw, Lewis Macleod, Jan Ravens, Debra Stephenson and Duncan Wisbey.

Written by Nev Fountain and Tom Jamieson, Laurence Howarth, Ed Amsden and Tom Coles, Edward Tew, Sophie Dickinson, Rob Darke, Dan Audritt and Kat Butterfield, Cody Dahler, and Duncan Wisbey.

Producer... Bill Dare
Production Coordinator... Caroline Barlow
Sound Designer... Rich Evans
A BBC Studios Production


SAT 12:57 Weather (m0012rv1)
The latest weather forecast


SAT 13:00 You're Dead To Me (p0b97gdq)
Medieval Christmas

Greg and his guests Miles Jupp and Dr Eleanor Janega go back to the medieval Christmas for this one-off festive special. We look at the history and traditions that have thankfully continued through the ages, like gift-giving and stuffed wild boars (although numbers on stuffed wild boar we're told are down from previous years) and some that have mysteriously fallen off from the radar completely, like the masked carol singers and jellied eels.

Research - Lloyd Roberts
Script- Emma Nagouse and Greg Jenner
Project Management - Siefe Miyo
Edit Producer - Cornelius Mendez


SAT 13:30 Ed Reardon's Christmas Week (m000qjh5)
Meet Ed Reardon, author, pipe smoker, consummate fare-dodger and master of the abusive email, trying to survive in a world where the media seems to be run by idiots and charlatans.

It's nearly Christmas, and Ed needs a room at the inn. The Lock Keeper's Arms, that is. But first, he's got to deal with Scrooge.

ED REARDON……………………………CHRISTOPHER DOUGLAS
PING………..………………………….BARUNKA O’SHAUGHNESSY
JAZ MILVAIN……………………………….………. PHILIP JACKSON
JAKE……………………………………………..…….SAM PAMPHILON
ELI……………………………………………………………LISA COLEMAN
AUDIOBOOK…………………………………NICOLA SANDERSON
LANDLORD.........……….……………………..COLIN MCFARLANE

Written by Christopher Douglas and Andrew Nickolds.
Produced by Victoria Lloyd
A BBC Studios Production


SAT 14:00 Jacqueline Wilson's Wonderful World with the BBC Symphony Orchestra (m0012rv3)
Dame Jacqueline Wilson’s books have inspired generations of children for 30 years. The renowned author joins the BBC Symphony Orchestra for a special family concert that will carry you into the worlds of some of her favourite characters – the fearless Tracy Beaker, the determined Hetty Feather and many more.

Dame Jacqueline believes anything can tell a story – music included. This concert expands the imagination with miraculous music by composers past and present. Expect sorcery, charm, rhythmic drive and hypnotic sounds from the BBC Symphony Orchestra - and, of course, the theme from CBBC’s beloved The Story of Tracy Beaker.

Dame Jacqueline is joined on stage by Dani Harmer (Tracy Beaker), Emma Maggie Davies (Jess Beaker), Isabel Clifton (Hetty Feather) and Chloe Lea (Katy Carr).

This broadcast from London’s Barbican Centre is edited for BBC Radio 4 from a live event shared at full length by BBC Radio 3 and is the latest in the series of special concerts bringing together writers of renown with the amazing BBC Symphony Orchestra.

Presented by: Dame Jacqueline Wilson
BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by: Mei-Ann Chen
Producer for BBC Radio 4: Steve Doherty
Produced for BBC Symphony Orchestra by Ann McKay
Executive Producer for BBC Symphony Orchestra: Paul Hughes
A Giddy Goat/BBC SO co-production.

MUSIC PLAYED:
Alan Langford: ‘Galop' from A Little French Suite
Keisha White: ‘Someday – Theme from The Story of Tracy Beaker’ (arr Gavin Sutherland)
Mason Bates: ‘Nymphs’ from Anthology of Fantastic Zoology
Anna Clyne: ‘Masquerade’
Einojuhani Rautavaara: ‘Melankolia’ from Cantus Arcticus

READINGS TAKEN FROM:
The Runaway Girls
The Story of Tracy Beaker
My Mum Tracy Beaker
Midnight
Hetty Feather
Katy
The Primrose Railway Children


SAT 15:00 HM The Queen (m0012rv5)
The Queen's Christmas message to the Commonwealth and the nation, followed by the national anthem.


SAT 15:05 News and Weather (m0012rv7)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4


SAT 15:15 The Princess Bride (m0012rv9)
The Dramatisation: Part 1

“This is my favourite book in all the world, though I have never read it”. When William Goldman discovers The Princess Bride by S Morgenstern is not the swashbuckling fantasy his father read him as a child, but is in fact a patchy and extensive historical satire, he sets out to create the “Good Parts” version…

A tale of true love and high adventure featuring a fighting giant that loves to rhyme, a swordsman on the ultimate quest for revenge, a pirate in love with a princess, a princess in love with a farm boy and a prince in love with war.

First a novel, then a film, now an audio experience:

The Best Bits of the Good Parts Version by Stephen Keyworth.

A two-part dramatisation of swashbuckling adventure plus five bitesize backstories which can be enjoyed as stand-alone stories or to enhance your experience of the drama.

The Dramatisation: Part 1

Buttercup is the most beautiful woman in the world and she’s in love with a farm boy who is about to become the most notorious man in the world…

Cast:
Buttercup … Ruby Barker
Fezzik … Tyler Collins
Inigo… Emun Elliott
Vizzini… Maryam Hamidi
Count Rugen … Robin Laing
Goldman Snr / Father / Roberts … Crawford Logan
Westley … Lorn Macdonald
Prince Humperdinck / William Goldman … Grant O’Rourke
Countess … Rosalind Sydney

Sound recording: Joanne Willott
Sound design: Fraser Jackson

Directed by Kirsty Williams


SAT 16:15 Woman's Hour (m0012rvc)
Weekend Woman’s Hour: Claire Foy, Joan Collins & the musical collaboration of Carol Ann Duffy and Kathryn Williams

The award winning actor Claire Foy tells us about playing the Duchess of Argyll in the BBC One TV series A Very British Scandal on Boxing Day. Margaret Argyll was branded a nymphomaniac by her husband the 11th Duke of Argyll in their explosive 1963 divorce hearing and he was granted a divorce on the grounds of his wife’s adultery.

As schools shut for the Christmas break, the government, head teachers and trade unions are contingency planning for widespread absence due to Omicron in the New Year. We hear from Jacquie White the General Secretary of the Ulster Teachers Union about calls for retired teachers to return to work to plug the gaps and also from Mary Bousted the General Secretary of the National Education Union.

Karen Teasdale-Robson from Blaydon, near Newcastle has gone to extraordinary lengths to make sure her father, Bryan isn't forgotten when he dies. Her dad for the majority of his life was a poet and a songwriter but an assault ten years ago left him with a brain injury. Care workers told Karen to prepare for the worst earlier this year, which led her to release a recording of lullaby he had written for her almost 60 years ago, to ask for the public's help in re-recording it.

We talk to Dame Joan Collins about her new BBC documentary “This is Joan Collins” which is on air over Christmas. Not shy of voicing her opinions, she reflects on her life, relationships, and seven decades in showbusiness.

Former poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy and Mercury-nominated songwriter Kathryn Williams have released a new album 'Midnight Chorus'. They tell us about their collaboration and how they avoided the clichés of Christmas.

Presenter: Chloe Tilley
Producer: Rabeka Nurmahomed


SAT 17:00 Fortunately... with Fi and Jane (m0012rvf)
217. Racily Adding Sweetcorn, with Clare Balding and Alice Arnold

In a special Christmas Day edition of the podcast, Fi Glover and Jane Garvey are joined by broadcasters and spouses Clare Balding and Alice Arnold. The four of them share a festive conversational meander, covering thoughts on their careers so far, a glimpse of Christmas in their household and reflections on the year gone by.

Get in touch: fortunately.podcast@bbc.co.uk


SAT 17:54 Shipping Forecast (m0012rvh)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


SAT 17:57 Weather (m0012rvk)
The latest weather reports and forecast


SAT 18:00 Six O'Clock News (m0012rvm)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4


SAT 18:15 Loose Ends (m0012rvp)
Rod Stewart, Miriam Margolyes, Les Dennis, Stacey Dooley, Graham Norton, Jo Brand, Anneka Rice, Clive Anderson

Clive Anderson and Anneka Rice with their pick of Loose Ends 2021. Conversation, comedy and music comes courtesy of an eclectic line up.


SAT 19:00 Profile (m0012rj8)
Pharoah Sanders

Pharoah Sanders’s 2021 album Promises has been called a spiritual album for the dark ages. Mark Coles hears how Sanders helped invent a new style of music, after his birth in the southern United States, and time spent sleeping rough in New York City.

Presenter: Mark Coles
Producers: Ben Crighton and Chris Flynn


SAT 19:15 This Cultural Life (m0012rvr)
Sting

As leader of rock band The Police, and as a multiple-Grammy winning solo artist, Sting has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide over his four decade career. In conversation with John Wilson, Sting explores some of the people and places that helped shape his creativity. He recalls his working class upbringing in the Tyneside shipbuilding communities, and how hearing The Beatles inspired his musical ambitions as a child. Sting explains why, at the height of their international success, he split The Police in the mid-eighties. He also reveals how Miles Davis and other jazz musicians, and classical composers including Bach and Prokofiev, inspired his new musical direction as a solo artist.

Producer: Edwina Pitman


SAT 20:00 Archive on 4 (b085hbz9)
The Many Faces of Ebenezer Scrooge

Christopher Frayling explores how Charles Dickens’s classic A Christmas Carol has endured in popular culture for over 170 years.

Victorian families sat around the fire to read Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, published in 1843, over the festive season. It became an annual ritual. Now we might sit around the TV and watch It's a Wonderful Life - an Americanised version of the story.

In between, there have been countless takes on the book - adapted for public readings, radio, TV, film and stage. Cultural historian and writer Christopher Frayling considers how this short novel has shaped Christmas as we know it today, and discusses the circumstances in which it was written.

Hearing from Dickens performers Simon Callow and Miriam Margolyes, as well as historians and fans, Christopher examines how the book’s potent mixture of nostalgia, social concern and celebration has become part of the cultural bloodstream.

He assesses versions starring everyone from Alastair Sim to the Muppets, via Blackadder and the Goons, getting to the very heart of Ebenezer Scrooge.

Dickens wrote of his novel, ‘may it haunt your house pleasantly.’ It has done so - in ways he could not have imagined - for over 170 years.

Producer: Jane Long

A Hidden Flack production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in December 2016.


SAT 21:00 Jeremy Irons Reads TS Eliot (b086l220)
Prufrock and Other Observations

Join us for an extraordinary journey at the turn of the year, as Jeremy Irons reads the complete collection of T.S. Eliot’s English poems, almost in their entirety, across New Year’s Day. This celebration of Eliot’s work comes in five parts, each of which are introduced by Martha Kearney and special guests, including the actress Fiona Shaw, the writer Jeanette Winterson, Rory Stewart MP, and the lawyer Anthony Julius. At the end of a year in which so much that had been taken for granted seemed to fragment, our guests explain why Eliot, himself a poet of fragments, can steady us for a journey into the unknown, and for transformation. Our journey includes the ‘The Love Song of J.Alfred Prufrock’ with its exquisite depiction of the loneliness of young man, the post-war turmoil of ‘The Waste Land’, the spiritual struggle of poems like ‘Ash-Wednesday’ - and concludes with the lucent imagery of time and possibility in the ‘Four Quartets’; there may be no better preparation for the coming year.

Part One
Martha Kearney talks to award-winning novelist Jeanette Winterson about her first experience of reading T.S. Eliot and the transformative impact of his language on her as a teenager. She explains why the turn of the year is a good time to read Eliot’s work.

Jeremy Irons reads:
The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock
Portrait of a Lady
Preludes
Rhapsody on a Windy Night
Morning at the Window
The 'Boston Evening Transcript'
Aunt Helen
Cousin Nancy
Mr. Apollinax
Hysteria
Conversation Galante
La Figlia Che Piange

With a contribution from Jeanette Winterson


SAT 21:45 Dr John Cooper Clarke at the BBC (b09jvvnw)
Series 2

28/12/2017

The Bard of Salford performs a mixture of classic and previously unheard poems, recorded at the BBC's Radio Theatre in London.

Set List:

Gimmick World (It's a World of Gimmicks)

Home Honey I'm High

The Motorist

Christmas 73

Pies

Written and performed by Dr John Cooper Clarke
Introduction by Johnny Green
Produced by Joe Nunnery
A BBC Studios Production.


SAT 22:00 News (m0012rvt)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4


SAT 22:15 Moral Maze (m0012q3l)
Peace and Goodwill

Christmas is the season of peace on earth and good will to all people. While we naturally want to endorse this sentiment, it is also a yearly reminder of how conflict and bad faith exist in our homes and in wider society. While some families will celebrate a long-anticipated and joyful reunion, others will be trying to hold their tongue about divisive issues like Brexit or Covid until the same time next year. Surely, we could all benefit from a bit more listening, understanding and compromising? But what if deeply-held principles, make compromise impossible without sacrificing one’s own integrity? Is it better to say nothing at all for short-term peace or speak forthrightly not knowing if the long-term outcome for the relationship will be one of rupture or repair? Beyond the domestic setting is the question of how we address the cultural warfare we see in the public discourse around us. What will it take for us to come out of our ideological trenches and stop our sniping? Perhaps it starts by recognising that we all have egos that are difficult to tame, and admitting we’re wrong doesn’t make us weak. We hear the calls to ‘disagree respectfully’, but how? For some, the very idea solves or advances very little, particularly for the most marginalised in society. For others, the point isn’t to solve anything but to live together in difference while upholding each other’s humanity. With Gabrielle Rifkind, Dr Becca Bland, Rev Steve Chalke and Sarah Stein Lubrano.

Producer: Dan Tierney


SAT 23:00 Quote... Unquote (m0012plr)
Georgie Morrell, Lissa Evans, Daliso Chaponda

The celebrity panel game about quotations, hosted by Nigel Rees, returns with a series celebrating its 500th programme.

This episode features:
- Georgie Morrell, stand-up comedian, actor, and writer
- Lissa Evans, former producer of Quote...Unquote who went on to produce Father Ted and become a highly successful novelist
- Daliso Chaponda, critically acclaimed stand-up comedian and multi-disciplinary author

Reader of the Quotations: Charlotte Green
Production Co-Ordinator: Sarah Nicholls
Producer: Ella Watts
Executive Producer: James Robinson

This programme is a BBC Studios Audio production.


SAT 23:30 Uncanny (m0012rvw)
Case 10: Don't Sleep in this House

Christmas 1974, and two young climbers stumble across an abandoned house in the Scottish mountains. It’s a bothy - a safe shelter for hunters and climbers out in the wilds of the highlands. But Phil and Jimmy are about to experience the most terrifying night of their lives, alone in the middle of nowhere.

Is a violent spirit determined to drive them out into the freezing night? Years later, Phil tells Danny Robins his story and about how he researched the house, discovering others had had similar experiences there. What's going on? Danny investigates.

Written and presented by Danny Robins
Editor and Sound Designer: Charlie Brandon-King
Music: Evelyn Sykes
Theme Music by Lanterns on the Lake
Produced by Danny Robins and Simon Barnard

A Bafflegab and Uncanny Media production for BBC Radio 4



SUNDAY 26 DECEMBER 2021

SUN 00:00 Midnight News (m0012rvy)
The latest news and weather forecast from BBC Radio 4.


SUN 00:15 Christmas Meditation (m0012rw0)
Just after midnight on Boxing Day, broadcaster and journalist Adrian Chiles reflects on the true meaning of Christmas, looking back at his memories over the past five decades.

For some, Christmas will be a quiet and possibly isolating experience; for others it will be a long day spent entertaining family and friends. In a personal reflection on what it means to Adrian, he’ll capture his thoughts and feelings at this festive time of year.

Producer: Alexa Good


SUN 00:30 Short Works (m0012rty)
[Repeat of broadcast at 12:04 on Saturday]


SUN 00:48 Shipping Forecast (m0012rw2)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


SUN 01:00 Selection of BBC World Service Programmes (m0012rw4)
BBC Radio 4 presents a selection of news and current affairs, arts and science programmes from the BBC World Service.


SUN 05:34 Shipping Forecast (m0012rw6)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


SUN 05:43 Bells on Sunday (m0012rp4)
Coventry Cathedral

Bells on Sunday comes from Coventry Cathedral. In 1927 the Cathedral had a chime of 12 bells cast by Gillett and Johnson of Croydon. These were not rung full circle due to structural problems with the tower. The original medieval Cathedral was destroyed during an air-raid in 1940, all that remained was a shell full of rubble, and the tower containing the bells. In 1987 the bells were rehung for full circle ringing in the tower by Taylors of Loughborough. We hear themringing Stedman Cinques.


SUN 05:45 Profile (m0012rj8)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Saturday]


SUN 06:00 News Summary (m0012rnq)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4


SUN 06:05 Something Understood (b01ng1j3)
God's Comfort

Mark Tully discusses a concept encapsulated in the words of Julian of Norwich - that "All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well." Should we all be thinking about belief in a God, who ultimately always comforts us - the god St Paul describes as "the God of all comfort who comforteth us in all tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God"?

It would take courage and faith to trust in God the comforter because of course very often we go through travails which seem endless.

Mark talks to journalist Christopher Howse and introduces readings from Gerard Manley Hopkins, John Donne and Elizabeth Barrett Browning, with music ranging from Handel to Melody Gardot and REM.

Producer: Frank Stirling
A Unique production for BBC Radio 4.


SUN 06:35 Natural Histories (b07gfgv5)
Oyster

Eat them alive straight from their shell. Or deep fry them. Or remember them - with their little feet - addressing Lewis Carroll's Walrus and Carpenter - the oyster plays a rich and varied part in British life. Brett Westwood eats his subject for the very first time and takes ship to catch some more in the muddy tidal creeks of the Essex North Sea coast. The world may not quite be his oyster but in this programme the oyster is definitely his world. With Richard Haward, Philine zu Ermgassen, and Peter Marren. Revised edition of the 2016 episode.

Original Producer : Tim Dee
Archive producer for BBC Audio in Bristol : Andrew Dawes


SUN 06:57 Weather (m0012rnt)
The latest weather reports and forecast


SUN 07:00 News and Papers (m0012rnw)
The latest news headlines. Including a look at the papers.


SUN 07:10 Sunday (m0012rny)
A look at the ethical and religious issues of the week


SUN 07:54 Radio 4 Appeal (m0012rgv)
Encephalitis Society

Carer and author Catherine Jessop presents the BBC Radio 4 Appeal on behalf of the charity Encephalitis Society.

To Give:
- UK Freephone 0800 404 8144
-You can donate online at bbc.co.uk/appeal/radio4
- Freepost BBC Radio 4 Appeal. (That’s the whole address. Please do not write anything else on the front of the envelope). Mark the back of the envelope ‘Encephalitis Society’.
- Cheques should be made payable to ‘Encephalitis Society’.
Please note that Freephone and online donations for this charity close at 23.59 on the Saturday after the Appeal is first broadcast. However the Freepost option can be used at any time.

Registered in England and Wales No. 04189027. Registered Charity No. 1087843 (England and Wales) and SC048210 (Scotland)


SUN 07:57 Weather (m0012rgz)
The latest weather reports and forecast


SUN 08:00 News and Papers (m0012rh4)
The latest news headlines. Including a look at the papers.


SUN 08:10 Sunday Worship (m0012rh8)
A Gospel Christmas Celebration

The Revd Lucy Winkett leads a Christmas Gospel Celebration with Mel Giedroyc reading favourites for Boxing Day, and all those Christmas tunes you love - sung with a Gospel beat by Soul Sanctuary Gospel Choir. Producer: Andrew Earis.


SUN 08:48 A Point of View (m0012r7v)
The Sea at Christmas

Howard Jacobson ponders why he's always associated Christmas with the sea.

Strange, he reckons, given he's not exactly maritime by temperament.

'Long ago at Blackpool,' he writes, 'I was lifted onto a donkey and afterwards told to make a sandcastle, but I fell off the donkey and wilder boys in Brillo-pad swimming trunks trampled over my battlements'.

He looks to Matthew Arnold for an explanation of this 'mysterious nexus of sea and Santa'.

Producer: Adele Armstrong


SUN 08:58 Tweet of the Day (b09c0pw0)
Paul Evans on the Raven

Writer Paul Evans encounters a pair of ravens and reflects on their dark associations and their playful and ominous voices.

Producer: Sarah Blunt
Photo: Michael Davey.


SUN 09:00 Archive on 4 (m0012pc6)
Piers Plowright, Soundsmith

Piers Plowright described himself as a 'radio man'. He'd grown up in a home where the wireless was moved into the living room of an evening for family listening.

Others have called Piers, who died in July 2021, the Godfather of the British Radio Feature.

His thirty-year BBC career began in 1968 as a trainee in English By Radio, after which he migrated via drama to documentaries. There, his programmes received radio's highest accolade, the Prix Italia, on three occasions. Yet he remained always modest, a practised listener, a supporter of colleagues, a composer of sound, silence and word, and - for all his erudition and love of culture - a mischievous spirit.

All of this is felt in his many programmes (see below). In a medium described as having no memory, the quality and distinctiveness of Piers' radio programmes - and the grace of the man - are long remembered.

You are invited to lend your ears to some of his work in this tribute from colleagues and admirers:
Melvyn Bragg, his close friend from student days and distinguished broadcaster,
Dr Cathy Fitzgerald, an award-winning feature-maker and presenter
Seán Street, poet and Professor of Radio
Marta Medvešek, the young Croatian recipient of the 2021 Prix Europa for radio documentary
Matt Thompson, a younger colleague who fell under Piers' spell in the BBC documentaries department
Julie Shapiro, formerly Artistic Director of the Third Coast Festival in Chicago, which awarded Piers the Audio Luminary Award in 2006
Martin Williams, a celebrated producer and amateur radio historian
Redzi Bernard, producer and co-host of the Telling Stories podcast
Tony Phillips, former production colleague and radio commissioning executive.

Including interview excerpts with Piers from Roger Kneebone's Countercurrent podcast and Victor Hall's Pocketsize Studio
and extracts from the following programmes in the BBC Sound Archive:
Stepping Stones (R4, 2015)
A Fine Blue Day (R4, 1978)
Splashpast! (R4, 1993)
Mirooo (R3, 1993)
Mr B - a portrait of James Bellamy (R4, 1991)
Setting Sail (R4, 1985)
One Big Kitchen Table (R4, 1989)
Mr Fletcher, the Poet (R4, 1986)
Nobody Stays in This House Long (R4, 1983)
What Are They Looking At? (R3, 1997)

Produced by Alan Hall
A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4

(Photo credit: Lucy Tizard)


SUN 10:00 The Archers Omnibus (m0012rhc)
Writer, Naylah Ahmed
Director, Kim Greengrass
Editor, Jeremy Howe

Jennifer Aldridge ….. Angela Piper
Alice Carter ….. Hollie Chapman
Chris Carter ….. Wilf Scolding
Susan Carter ….. Charlotte Martin
Alan Franks ….. John Telfer
Usha Gupta ….. Souad Faress
Amy Franks ….. Jennifer Daley
Clarrie Grundy ….. Heather Bell
Kirsty Miller ….. Anabelle Dowler
Jazzer McCreary ….. Ryan Kelly
Lily Pargetter ….. Katie Redford
Lynda Snell ….. Carole Boyd
Oliver Sterling ….. Michael Cochrane


SUN 11:00 Desert Island Discs (m0012rhj)
Richard Osman, writer and broadcaster

Richard Osman is a broadcaster, TV producer and writer who co-presents the quiz show Pointless on BBC One. His first novel, The Thursday Murder Club, was a publishing phenomenon, selling more than a million copies, and the follow-up became one of the fastest-selling titles since records began.

Richard grew up in Haywards Heath in West Sussex and his early passion for television led to him devising quiz shows and programme formats from a young age. After graduating from university he worked for a number of production companies where he helped to develop and produce shows including Total Wipeout, Deal or No Deal and 8 out of 10 Cats.

In 2009 Richard became a co-presenter of Pointless alongside Alexander Armstrong. It was not his intention to move in front of the camera, but he was given the job after taking on the role of co-host while the show was being developed.

In 2020 Richard published his debut novel, the Thursday Murder Club, the story of four friends in a retirement community who band together to solve cold cases. It was an instant hit, selling 45,000 copies in its first three days on sale. Steven Spielberg has bought the film rights.

Richard lives in London and is writing his third novel featuring his resourceful retirees.

Presenter Lauren Laverne
Producer Paula McGinley


SUN 11:45 Some Hay in a Manger (b085ttg5)
Episode 2

Sandy is an enthusiastic if slightly dim camel carrying a king and a box of myrrh through the desert. Martha is an intelligent but rather down-beat donkey carrying a heavily pregnant lady to Bethlehem. The two strike up an unusual correspondence that gives a comical take on the Christmas Story told through a series of letters...

In the second and final episode, there is no room at any of the inns in Bethlehem, although luckily there is a bit of stable space. Or there would be if it weren't for all the sheep who seem to have got completely the wrong idea about what species the Lamb of God is likely to be. A lactose-intolerant elephant, a frog and a surprisingly ingenious plan bring Sandy and Martha together to witness something miraculous. But is that going to be the end of their friendship?

By Robert Hudson and Marie Phillips, authors of Radio 4's previous epistolary beast-based comedy Warhorses of Letters.

Starring Tamsin Greig as Martha
Joel Fry as Sandy
Introduced by Stephen Fry

Produced by Gareth Edwards

A BBC Studios Production


SUN 12:00 News Summary (m0012rp0)
National and international news from BBC Radio 4


SUN 12:04 I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue (m0012ny7)
Series 76

Episode 4

Back for a second week at Birmingham’s Alexandra Theatre, Marcus Brigstocke and Rory Bremner are joined on the panel by Pippa Evans and Andy Hamilton, with Jack Dee the unimpressed umpire. Piano accompaniment is provided by Colin Sell. Producer - Jon Naismith. It is a BBC Studios production.


SUN 12:32 The Food Programme (m0012rhp)
The Rise of Ultra-Fast Grocery Delivery

Leyla Kazim dives into the world of rapid grocery delivery, one of the newest trends to hit the world of food retail. In scarcely more than a year, a wave of new companies like Getir, Weezy, Gorillas, Jiffy, Zapp and Gopuff has arrived in cities across the UK which can deliver products to your door in as little as 10 minutes. It’s a sector that’s raised billions of pounds of investment and wants to disrupt the grocery market – so what impact could it have on the way we buy food?

Key to the ultra-fast delivery speeds are 'dark stores', or hyperlocal fulfilment centres, which have been growing in number since the start of the pandemic – Leyla visits one run by Gorillas, and talks to their UK General Manager Eddie Lee about their plans for expansion. To consider the future of the rapid grocery delivery companies and what impact they are having on the rest of the food retail world, we hear from: Matt Truman, co-founder and CEO of specialist retail and consumer investor, True; Chris Noice, Communications Director at the Association of Convenience Stores; George Nott, Technology Editor at The Grocer; and Professor Annabelle Gower, Director of the Centre of Digital Economy at the University of Surrey.

Presented by Leyla Kazim and produced by Sophie Anton for BBC Audio in Bristol.


SUN 12:57 Weather (m0012rhr)
The latest weather forecast


SUN 13:00 The World This Weekend (m0012rht)
Radio 4’s look at the week’s big stories from both home and around the world.


SUN 13:30 The Listening Project (m0012rhw)
The Best of 2021

Fi Glover presents a selection of 5 conversations gathered by our team of local producers around the country- your chance to enjoy again some of our finest moments.

Former soldiers Michael and Nick, who have both done tours there, share their thoughts on how the military withdrawal from Afghanistan was handled; lorry drivers Becky and James discuss the realities of the trucking world; Alison and Nathan reflect on the impact being scammed has had on their lives; Helen and Chris share their opposing views on people owning second homes across the UK; and two women, both called Karen, talk about how and why their name has taken on a bad connotation over the last few years.

The Listening Project is a Radio 4 initiative that offers a snapshot of contemporary Britain in which people across the UK volunteer to have a conversation. The conversations are being gathered across the UK by teams of producers from local and national radio stations who facilitate each encounter. Every conversation lasts up to an hour and is then edited to extract the key moments of connection between the participants. Most of the unedited conversations are being archived by the British Library and used to build up a collection of voices capturing a unique portrait of the UK in this decade of the millennium. You can learn more about The Listening Project by visiting bbc.co.uk/listeningproject

Producer: Mohini Patel


SUN 14:00 Gardeners' Question Time (m0012rhy)
[Repeat of broadcast at 07:00 on Saturday]


SUN 14:45 A Home of Our Own (m0010f9n)
St Thomas' Street, Newcastle upon Tyne

Lynsey Hanley tells the cautionary tale of Howard and Margaret, who are leaseholders of a handsome Georgian style property in central Newcastle.

Every home has a story to tell about Britain's housing crisis. Howard and Margaret have fallen foul of England's leasehold laws and now describe their seemingly desirable home as a 'gilded cage'.

Lynsey explores the leasehold system and finds out just how contentious land ownership in this country can be.

House historian Melanie Backe-Hansen looks at the history of St Thomas Street and Professor Paul Cheshire puts the story in context.

Producer: Laurence Grissell


SUN 15:00 The Ambridge Mystery Plays (m0012rj0)
Episode 1

1/2 The Nativity
Queen of Ambridge amateur theatricals, Lynda Snell, takes charge of this brand new adaptation of the Mediaeval dramas. Join the cast of The Archers in a unique promenade production around Ambridge, telling the Christmas story with warmth, humour and festive cheer.

Adapted by Nick Warburton
Director …. Kim Greengrass
Executive Editor …. Jeremy Howe
Technical Producers …. Andy Partington & Vanessa Nuttall
Production Coordinators …. Sally Lloyd & Andrew Smith

1st Angel …. Sunny Ormonde
2nd Angel …. Katie Redford
God …. Carole Boyd
Isaiah …. Timothy Bentinck
Mary …. Molly Pipe
Joseph …. Nick Barber
Herod …. Timothy Bentinck
Messenger …. Sunny Ormonde
1st Shepherd …. Ryan Kelly
2nd Shepherd …. Trevor Harrison
3rd Shepherd …. Katie Redford
1st King … Charlotte Martin
2nd King …. Ryan Kelly
3rd King …. Katie Redford
1st Soldier …. Charlotte Martin
2nd Soldier …. Trevor Harrison
Simeon …. Carole Boyd

Other parts played by members of the company.

A BBC Audio Drama Birmingham production.


SUN 16:00 Open Book (m0012rj3)
Highlights 2021

Elizabeth Day and Johny Pitts look back at highlights of their first year at the helm of the programme, from Booker Prize winner Damon Galgut to exciting debuts authors such as Raven Leilani

Book List – Sunday 26 December and Thursday 30 December

Harlem Shuffle by Colson Whitehead
Luster by Raven Leilani
Memorial by Bryan Washington
The Other Black Girl by Zakiya Dalila Harris
Open Water by Caleb Azumah Nelson
The Living Sea of Waking Dreams by Richard Flanagan
The Wrong End of the Telescope by Rabih Alameddine
A Bright Ray of Darkness by Ethan Hawke
Light Perpetual by Francis Spufford
Matrix by Lauren Groff
We Run the Tides by Vendela Vida
The Selfless Act of Breathing by J J Bola
The Country of Others by Leila Slimani
Crossroads by Jonathan Franzen
Endgame by Malorie Blackman
Pig-Heart Boy by Malorie Blackman
Whereabouts by Jhumpa Lahiri
The Promise by Damon Galgut
Burntcoat by Sarah Hall
A Rage in Harlem by Chester Himes
Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J K Rowling
Postcards from the Edge by Carrie Fisher
Vagbonds by Eloghosa Osunde
Return of a Native by Vron Ware
Love Marriage by Monica Ali
A Dreamlife by Claire Messud


SUN 16:30 The Kitchen Cabinet (m0012rj5)
Series 35

Home Economics: Episode 46

Jay Rayner hosts a culinary panel show packed full of tasty titbits. In the first episode of a brand new series, he's joined by Tim Anderson, Anna Jones, Tim Hayward and Dr Zoe Laughlin as they answer questions from a virtual audience.

Kicking off proceedings this week, resident materials expert Dr Zoe Laughlin leads the panellists in a game for all the family. To get involved, you'll need a small piece of chocolate...

Beyond the fun, our food experts get serious about sustenance, serving up a feast of seasonally appropriate ideas - including throwing together the most delicious homemade stock, creating the paragon of roast potatoes, and melting chocolate to mouth-watering excellence.

Producer: Jemima Rathbone
Assistant Producer: Bethany Hocken

A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4


SUN 17:00 A Family of Strangers (m0012qyn)
How a simple DNA test turned a world upside down, leading to profound questions of identity. When 71-year-old Philip was given a genetic testing kit for Christmas, he assumed he would stumble across an ancient line of nobility or a novel identity to latch onto. Instead, he found himself unravelling a mystery with more twists and turns than a spiralling strand of DNA. David Reid meets an extraordinary group of people who sent in DNA samples and tested negative to the question: “Who am I?” Join them on a moving, funny and thought-provoking journey as they dig through layers of family myth and secrecy to unearth the incredible story of their origins.

Produced and presented by David Reid
Editor: Hugh Levinson
Production Coordinator: Jacqui Johnson
Sound: Tom Brignell


SUN 17:40 Profile (m0012rj8)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Saturday]


SUN 17:54 Shipping Forecast (m0012rjb)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


SUN 17:57 Weather (m0012rjd)
The latest weather reports and forecast


SUN 18:00 Six O'Clock News (m0012rjg)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4


SUN 18:15 Pick of the Week (m0012rjj)
Pick of the Podcasts 2021 with Bella Mackie

Writer and podcast host Bella Mackie presents her pick of the brilliant and fascinating shows that have come out in 2021. She chooses the podcasts that tell a unique story, or offer up an alternative perspective, as well as the ones that are gripping, uplifting and informative.

Producer: Dan Tierney.


SUN 19:00 The Archers (m0012rjl)
Susan’s got the wrong end of the stick and Usha’s feeling mischievous.


SUN 19:15 Quote... Unquote (m0012mw7)
Quote... Unquote: A Celebration

BBC Radio 4 Extra marks the end of an era for the long-running literary panel game, Quote… Unquote.

Quote… Unquote was devised by Nigel Rees, who chaired every one of its 500 episodes. Becoming a 57 series staple on the airwaves since January 1976, its aim was to reflect all aspects of the English language and the humour derived from it. Deliberate or otherwise.

Hundreds of guests appeared in the show’s 45-year history, including Tom Stoppard, Kenneth Williams and Neil Ninnock. The actor William Franklyn read the quotes and extracts until his death in 2006. From that point, familiar Radio 4 continuity and news readers took over the role, the most recent being Charlotte Green.

Devised and introduced by Nigel Rees
Produced by James Robinson
A BBC Studios Production

New to 4 Extra.


SUN 19:45 Gambits (m0012rjn)
9: The Knight

Susannah Fielding continues Eley Williams' short story series set in an Essex village gripped by chess, and where dark secrets lurk behind its closed doors. Today, in 'The Knight', a woman finds herself in the home of the parents of the village's chess prodigy, and finds herself she enacting some revenge of her own...

Reader: Susannah Fielding
Writer: Eley Williams
Producer: Justine Willett


SUN 20:00 Feedback (m0012rjq)
Adam Fleming is the main presenter of the BBC’s most popular podcast Newscast. He explains to Roger Bolton what he thinks makes it work.

The Archers is the most popular programme on BBC Sounds, and Annabelle Dowler who plays one of its most loved characters, Kirsty, talks about the challenges her character has faced in the last few years.

And, have any of the Out of Your Comfort Zone contributors actually changed their listening habits since last appearing on Feedback?

Presenter: Roger Bolton
Producer: Kate Dixon
Executive Producer: Samir Shah

A Juniper Connect production for BBC Radio 4


SUN 20:30 Last Word (m0012r7d)
bell hooks (pictured), Shirley McGreal, Lionel Blair, Melvin Van Peebles

Julian Worricker on

The feminist writer bell hooks, credited with prompting new, radical thinking about race, gender and class.

Shirley McGreal, founder of the International Primate Protection League, whose work in conservation led to her opening a gibbon sanctuary in South Carolina.

The singer, dancer and actor, Lionel Blair, whose career began during World War II, and spanned eight decades...

And the pioneering film director, Melvin Van Peebles, who became known as the godfather of black cinema.

Producer: Emily Finch

Interviewed guest: Liza Goddard
Interviewed guest: Gwenda Motley
Interviewed guest: Linda Strong-Leek
Interviewed guest: Helen Thirlway
Interviewed guest: Liza Goddard
Interviewed guest: Jess Conrad
Interviewed guest: Garrett Chaffin-Quiray

Archive clips used: YouTube, Freedom Forum: Speaking Freely - bell hooks 29/03/2016; Sankofa Read Aloud YouTube Channel, Happy to Be Nappy by bell hooks 03/07/2017; YouTube, The Bill Collins Show - Shirley McGreal 13/04/2018; International Primate Protection League Facebook Page, Gibbons Singing and Swinging 16/4/2020; BBC1 TV, Nationwide: Shirley McGreal 01/07/1980; SOSorangutans YouTube page, Orangutan Longcall 11/10/2011; YouTube, Gibbon Sound 05/10/2016; THAMES TV, Give Us a Clue (Series 2) 1979; The Official Sammy Davis Jr Website, Sammy Davis Jr and Lionel Blair Tap Battle - 1961 Royal Variety Performance; BBC Radio 4, Today 17/02/2010.


SUN 21:00 Jeremy Irons Reads TS Eliot (b086l8m2)
The Waste Land

Join us for an extraordinary journey at the turn of the year, as Jeremy Irons reads the complete collection of T.S. Eliot’s English poems, almost in their entirety, across New Year’s Day. This celebration of Eliot’s work comes in five parts, each of which are introduced by Martha Kearney and special guests, including the actress Fiona Shaw, the writer Jeanette Winterson, Rory Stewart MP, and the lawyer Anthony Julius. At the end of a year in which so much that had been taken for granted seemed to fragment, our guests explain why Eliot, himself a poet of fragments, can steady us for a journey into the unknown, and for transformation. Our journey includes the ‘The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock’ with its exquisite depiction of the loneliness of young man, the post-war turmoil of ‘The Waste Land’, the spiritual struggle of poems like ‘Ash-Wednesday’ - and concludes with the lucent imagery of time and possibility in the ‘Four Quartets’; there may be no better preparation for the coming year.

Part Three
Martha Kearney explores the resonance and the contemporary appeal of ‘The Waste Land’ with award-winning novelist Jeanette Winterson. Jeanette explains why this poetry of fragments can still speak to us so powerfully, whilst the former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams and the Scots Makar Jackie Kay, both make contributions to explore the emotional and creative impact of the poem.

Jeremy Irons reads:
The Waste Land


SUN 21:45 Radio 4 Appeal (m0012rgv)
[Repeat of broadcast at 07:54 today]


SUN 21:48 A Point of View (m0012r7v)
[Repeat of broadcast at 08:48 today]


SUN 22:00 News Review of the Year (m0012rjt)
2021

After the all-consuming global event of 2020, the past twelve months have seen the world return to a semblance of normality while struggling with the continuing effects of the pandemic.

Adam Fleming and his guests - Helen Lewis, writer for "The Atlantic"; the broadcaster Datshiane Navanayagam and columnist for "The Times", Daniel Finkelstein - reflect on a year that witnessed the violent storming of the Capitol in Washington and Joe Biden's first year in office, the murder of Sarah Everard, the passing of Prince Philip, the abrupt and chaotic western withdrawal from Afghanistan and Angela Merkel's sotto voce departure from office, but also the highs and lows of the Euros, Christopher Plummer's demise, "The President's War Room" documentary, the return of familiar convulsions to British politics and Emma Raducanu's pulsating individual triumph at Flushing Meadow. And, of course, the continuing effects of the pandemic on all aspects of our lives.

Producer: Simon Coates


SUN 23:00 John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme (m000vqr4)
Series 9

Episode 1

The ninth series of John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme is very different to the previous eight. It's still written by John Finnemore, "one of our best sketch writers", (The Observer), and performed by him with "a great supporting cast of Margaret Cabourn-Smith, Simon Kane, Lawry Lewin and Carrie Quinlan" (The Telegraph), and there are still sketches and songs. But, with no live studio audience this year, John has taken the opportunity to try something completely new

Every episode in this series of Souvenir Programme is made up of scenes from one person's life, played in reverse order. There's no narrative to the episode; it's still a sketch show, not a sitcom... but the sketches in each episode all happened to one person, played by one member of the cast, over the course of their lifetime.

Episode one is all about Russ, and takes place between a Christmas day Zoom in 2020, and a funeral he attended as a five-year-old in 1990.

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme started in 2011 and quickly established itself as "One of the most consistently funny sketch shows for quite some time" (The Guardian), and "One of the funniest and most inventive new radio comedy shows of recent years" (The Daily Mail).

Written and performed by ... John Finnemore
Russ ... Lawry Lewin
Ensemble ... Margaret Cabourn-Smith
Ensemble ... Simon Kane
Ensemble ... Carrie Quinlan

Original music composed by .... Susannah Pearse
Original music arranged by ... Susannah Pearse and Tim Sutton
Recorded and edited by ... Rich Evans at Syncbox Post
Production coordinator ... Beverly Tagg
Producer ... Ed Morrish

A BBC Studios Production


SUN 23:30 Something Understood (b01ng1j3)
[Repeat of broadcast at 06:05 today]



MONDAY 27 DECEMBER 2021

MON 00:00 Midnight News (m0012rp2)
The latest news and weather forecast from BBC Radio 4.


MON 00:15 Sideways (m0012q30)
24. Sweet Harmony

James Campbell's family were unusual. They were the 'singing family'. Everyone on their street knew it - and heard it. They would sing at the drop of a hat and James' father had a barbershop quartet.

Every Monday evening James would listen attentively to the sumptuous close harmonies and his father taught him and his siblings to harmonise too. James took this into his adult years. It gave him a lifelong enjoyment and confidence to harmonise with other people, just for fun. One day, when his father is taken very ill, James realises the power of harmony at the hardest of times as he and his family join around his father's hospital bed to sing.

In this episode, Matthew Syed explores the importance of harmony and asks whether bringing in musical ideas could help bring us a little more harmony in our lives. We get a lesson in close harmony singing with folk trio Lady Maisery and consider how the principles of close listening could carry beyond a musical setting.

And Matthew explores Plato's ideas about the soul in harmony with Professor Angie Hobbs, the Professor of the Public Understanding of Philosophy at the University of Sheffield. And with Ian Cross, Emeritus Professor of Music and Science at the University of Cambridge, Matthew unravels the ways we communicate musically in conversation to signal agreement and to bond, showing the vital importance of musical interaction in bonding.

Presenter: Matthew Syed
Producer and Series Editor: Katherine Godfrey
Executive Producer: Max O'Brien
Music, Sound Design and Mix: Rob Speight
Theme music by Ioana Selaru.
A Novel production for BBC Radio 4.


MON 00:45 Bells on Sunday (m0012rp4)
[Repeat of broadcast at 05:43 on Sunday]


MON 00:48 Shipping Forecast (m0012rp6)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


MON 01:00 Selection of BBC World Service Programmes (m0012rp8)
BBC Radio 4 presents a selection of news and current affairs, arts and science programmes from the BBC World Service.


MON 05:34 Shipping Forecast (m0012rpb)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


MON 05:43 Prayer for the Day (m0012rpg)
A spiritual comment and prayer to begin the day with Rev Azariah France-Williams, priest, author and broadcaster.

Good morning.

'A long time ago in a galaxy far far way’ so begins the intergalactic fairytale, Star Wars, now referred to as Episode Four a New Hope. On this day in 1977 people cued for hours in Leicester Square in London and other venues, to get to see this groundbreaking movie.

Do you remember the frog like alien Hans Solo? Or the old grouchy general Luke Skywalker? No? That’s unsurprising as these characters were from the early drafts of the Star Wars written by George Lucas and partner Gary Kurtz. It took several drafts before became the popular movie so many of us know and love.

Many film studios turned it down until eventually 20th Century Fox decided to give it go, and even then they didn’t have high hopes for the movie, allowing Lucas to buy the rights to any future merchandise revenue generated.

After Star Wars was a hit, that revenue enabled Lucas to fund the movies The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi! We can watch the finished product and find it is easy to forget the process.

As New Year approaches, I wonder if there are ideas we might be keen to test, goals we want to set? Are there dreams we’ve given up on when all that’s needed is another go, a redraft, another look at the script? And like George Lucas where there is vision, there may be value.

Gracious God, inspire our hearts with creativity and vision for the future. Reminding ourselves of the characters in the Christmas story we pray that in all our endeavours you grant us the joy of the angels, the eagerness of the shepherds, the perseverance of the wise men, the obedience of Joseph and Mary and the peace of the Christ-child.

Amen


MON 05:45 Farming Today (m0012rpj)
Dahlia Beach

Anna Louise Claydon explores Dahlia Beach - a new PYO Dahlia Flower experience taking social media by storm. Meet the Founder, Andie McDowell who launched the idea of a grow-your-own cut flower garden in a box just 12 months ago. The venture escalated on instagram, growing over 30,000 loyal followers, inspiring Andie to find rented land that could enable her dreams of launching a PYO dahlia venture. Hear Andie's emotional journey as she reflects on some of the challenges of the last 18 months. We find out why Millets Farm took on a first-time farmer, the inspiration behind the name “Dahlia Beach" and Andie's ambitions for the new year ahead - her second year in business...

Produced and presented by Anna Louise Claydon


MON 05:56 Weather (m0012rpl)
The latest weather forecast for farmers.


MON 05:58 Tweet of the Day (b0910svf)
Tim Birkhead on Guillemot Senses

Seabird zoologist Tim Birkhead recalls the moment while on Skomer which changed his view on the old thought that the guillemot was a foolish bird for Tweet of the Day.

Producer: Tom Bonnett
Picture: George Hart.


MON 06:00 Today (m0012sc8)
Conservative peer and author of House of Cards Lord Michael Dobbs guest-edits the programme.


MON 09:00 Start the Week (m0012scb)
Vaccinate, ventilate and breathe

Andrew Marr talks to two of the leading scientists who were at the forefront of research into fighting the spread of Covid-19. Professor Teresa Lambe was one of the Principal Investigators overseeing the Oxford/ AstraZeneca vaccine programme. She co-designed the vaccine and led the pre-clinical studies, as well overseeing the impact on immunity. She will be taking part in this year’s Royal Institution Christmas Lectures (to be aired on BBC 4 at 8pm on 28th, 29th and 30th December), alongside Professor Catherine Noakes. As an engineer Noakes is one of a tiny number of specialists worldwide who study ventilation and the spread of airborne diseases. From the beginning of the pandemic she has been instrumental in providing advice on how the virus transmits and the best strategies to control its spread.

Covid-19 is a respiratory disease and one of the books on this year’s Royal Society prize shortlist is at the centre of revived interest in how we breathe. James Nestor argues, in his book Breath, that humans have lost the ability to breathe correctly, with damaging consequences that reach beyond snoring, asthma and allergies. Drawing on ancient wisdom and the latest scientific studies Nestor highlights the huge benefits from breathing through your nose, rather than your mouth.

Producer: Katy Hickman

Photo: Professor Catherine Noakes doing a demonstration at the Royal Institution Christmas Lectures 2021


MON 09:45 Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton (m0012scd)
William Joins the Carol Singers

Laughter on the air with Martin Jarvis. After last year's lockdown-episodes and Feedback's recent plea for more Just William exploits, here’s another escapist bunch of five.

Apart from our lateral-thinking hero, there are some wonderful guest-star characters in this newly recorded series of classics – including control-freak Violet Elizabeth Bott, who can ‘scweam an’ sweam ‘til she’s sick!’

In Episode 1, William believes he’s as good at ‘carol-singin' as anybody in the world - ‘when I start singin' you c'n hear me at the other end of the village.’ He and his Outlaws perform tunelessly, loudly, disgracefully. Ancient Aunt Jane thinks it's a pack of wolves. An exciting, ear-splitting evening. But this Christmas, William and chums have a secret plan. It’s to ‘torture’ their relations into providing acceptable Christmas presents. Timeless comic invention.

Written by Richmal Crompton.

Read by Martin Jarvis.
A Jarvis & Ayres production for BBC Radio 4


MON 10:00 Woman's Hour (m0012scg)
A Woman's Hour Christmas mixtape

Emma Barnett looks back over her first year at Woman’s Hour, from holding those in power to account to hearing from women who found themselves in the most ordinary and extraordinary circumstances. Clemency Burton-Hill explains the choice she felt she was presented with after a brain haemorrhage. ‘Annie’ describes how home-schooling three children while trying to work made her feel that she was failing at everything. Lady Lavinia Nourse and Amanda Knox spoke exclusively about the experience of being cleared of the most serious crimes. Plus, knitting patterns as code and what can go wrong when you are being sawn in half by Paul Daniels.


MON 11:00 The Hidden History of the Staircase (m0012scj)
Join Rachel Hurdley as she climbs the staircase to discover a story of steps, status, segregation and grand entrances.

Staircases go back thousands of years to the stepped temples of the ancient world. In this country they developed from simple ladders to the spiral staircases of medieval castles and the imposing stairways of Tudor mansions.

Staircases may seem to be just a way of getting from one floor to another but, over the centuries, they’ve taken on a range of hidden meanings and symbolism.

Rachel travels to Newark Castle to find the truth behind a medieval myth, discovers how the many flights of stairs at Tudor Hardwick Hall were used to impress visitors and visits Kedleston Hall to find out how Georgian landowners used staircases to reinforce their social position.

Along the way, we learn about the Victorian hierarchy that governed who went down the stairs first. And grab the popcorn as we consider the role of the staircase in cinematic history.

Interviewees:
Sonia Solicari, Director of The Museum of the Home
Jonathan Glancey, Architectural Writer and Historian
Imogen Tedbury, Curator of Art, Royal Museums Greenwich speaking at the Queen’s House.
James Wright, Buildings Archaeologist speaking at Newark Castle
Denise Edwards, General Manager of Hardwick Hall
Richard Swinscoe, Assistant Curator, National Trust speaking at Kedleston Hall
Deborah Sugg Ryan, Professor of Design History at Portsmouth University
Karen Krizanovich, Film Journalist

Presenter: Rachel Hurdley
Producer: Louise Adamson
Executive Producer: Samir Shah

A Juniper Connect production for BBC Radio 4


MON 11:30 Loose Ends (m0012rvp)
[Repeat of broadcast at 18:15 on Saturday]


MON 12:00 News Summary (m0012scm)
National and international news from BBC Radio 4


MON 12:04 The Princess Bride (m0012scp)
Bitesize Backstories: The Book

“This is my favourite book in all the world, though I have never read it”. When Goldman discovers The Princess Bride by S Morgenstern is not the swashbuckling fantasy his father read him as a child, but is in fact a patchy and extensive historical satire, he sets out to create the “Good Parts” version…

A tale of true love and high adventure featuring a fighting giant that loves to rhyme, a swordsman on the ultimate quest for revenge, a pirate in love with a princess, a princess in love with a farm boy and a prince in love with war.

First a novel, then a film, now an audio experience:

The Best Bits of the Good Parts Version by Stephen Keyworth.

A two-part dramatisation of swashbuckling adventure plus five bitesize backstories which can be enjoyed as stand-alone stories or to enhance your experience of the drama.

Bitesize Backstories: The Book

William Goldman’s fictional account of how he came to discover he’d never actually read his favourite book but why you can.

Reader: Grant O’Rourke
Producer: Kirsty Williams

Sound recording: Iain McKinna
Editing: Joanne Willott


MON 12:18 You and Yours (m0012scr)
Lasting Power of Attorney Fraud

In an exclusive investigation, we hear how a complete stranger was granted genuine Lasting Power of Attorney over a woman's financial affairs, after using fake names and signatures on an official form.

You and Yours reveals how listener, Marie, the victim of the fraud, discovered the stranger had then used the powerful document to try to sell her home without her knowledge. This was made possible because the Office of the Public Guardian, the government department that approves Lasting Power of Attorney applications, doesn't check for forgeries or carry out basic identity checks when applications are made.

Reporter Shari Vahl digs deep into how the fraud happened. She discovers how a woman called 'Julie' pretended to be Marie's sister to take over her financial affairs. Julie was granted Lasting Power of Attorney by the Office of the Public Guardian and then tried to sell Marie's home. We also hear how the quick thinking of a firm of Manchester-based solicitors ultimately saved Marie from losing her home to a total stranger.

Lasting Power of Attorney is normally set up in case a time comes when you can't manage your own affairs. It's used when people become too sick or frail and can't face dealing with their finances any more. They legally grant someone, usually a close relative or friend, the power to act in their best interests and make decisions on their behalf.

The Office of the Public Guardian says it has investigated Marie's case, removed the Lasting Power of Attorney from the register, and reported the matter to the Police.

The Ministry of Justice, which oversees the Office of the Public Guardian, says it's now reforming the system.

Presenter: Shari Vahl
Producer: Tara Holmes


MON 12:57 Weather (m0012sct)
The latest weather forecast


MON 13:00 World at One (m0012scw)
Forty-five minutes of news, analysis and comment, with Jonny Dymond.


MON 13:45 Call to Kabul (m0012s8f)
OK caller, you're on the air

The first programme in this series starts with that call as Paul, a former officer in the Marines, outlines the fight on his hands to help his former interpreter, Naqeeb. The series follows what happens as this dramatic story unfolds, reflecting the fear, confusion and desperation experienced by those trapped in Afghanistan.

Through the bond between Naqeeb and Paul we chart the efforts being made to get the family to safety. The story takes unexpected twists as events develop and throughout it all, Anita is at the end of the phone; documenting what’s happening and with Radio 4 listeners playing a crucial role.

Exposure on the BBC’s Any Answers programme in August was critical in saving Naqeeb’s life. The transmission of pleas made by the former officer reached MPs, Government ministers and others able to assist. Eight years earlier the interpreter, Naqeeb, had helped to save eight soldiers from an attack by a suicide bomber. Now those same soldiers want to repay that loyalty and get him, his wife and their six children to safety.

This series documents a bond between Naqeeb and the soldiers which continues to this day. They want him to have the best chances here in the UK; to find him work and to make sure his children are settled. It’s a dramatic story, with moments of real bravery, perseverance and friendship.

Through this one family we learn about the emerging situation in Afghanistan and the fears for those left behind.

This isn’t a unique story, it has cross-over with so many other experiences, but by telling it in such detail it highlights the terrifying reality faced by those dealing with the consequences of the allied forces withdrawal. It also brings home how bonds forged in life and death situations many years ago can lead to such powerful actions now.

Produced by Sue Mitchell
Presented by Anita Anand


MON 14:00 The Archers (m0012rjl)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Sunday]


MON 14:15 Drama (m000j9kf)
Eric the Skull

In 1930, at the height of the Golden Age of crime fiction, a group of detective writers set about forming their own social organisation, which came to be called the Detection Club.

It still exists and, three times a year, the cream of today’s crime writers meet for dinner.

The precise facts of the association’s genesis are, appropriately, shrouded in mystery - but this play chronicles how it might have happened.

One of the leading lights in the setting-up of the Club was the indomitable Dorothy L Sayers (played by Fenella Woolgar). Also involved were Agatha Christie (Janie Dee) and GK Chesterton (Mark Williams), who became its first President.

The high spirits of much of that period’s crime fiction is reflected in the play’s tone, as the members devise an arcane Initiation ritual for new members, and search for a suitable object on which they should make their vows of loyalty to the Club.

Cast:
Dorothy L Sayers – Fenella Woolgar
Agatha Christie – Janie Dee
GK Chesterton – Mark Williams
EC Bentley – Steve Furst
Anthony Berkeley Cox – Matt Addis

Written by Simon Brett
Producer: Liz Anstee

A CPL production for BBC Radio 4


MON 15:00 Counterpoint (m0012sd0)
Series 35

Heat 1, 2022

(1/13)
The general knowledge music quiz returns for a new season, with Paul Gambaccini in the question-master's chair. To launch the series, the questions facing the three competitors in today's heat have a wintry flavour. From the Gershwins to Kate Bush and from Christmas number ones to 21st century ballet music, there's something to suit every taste.

Taking part in the opening programme of the series are
Julian Ashton from Abingdon in Oxfordshire
Leigh Haggar from Fleet in Hampshire
Isabelle Heward from Goxhill in North Lincolnshire.

The winner will take the first of the semi-final places and another step towards possibly being named the 35th BBC Counterpoint champion.

Assistant Producer: Stephen Garner
Producer: Paul Bajoria


MON 15:30 The Food Programme (m0012rhp)
[Repeat of broadcast at 12:32 on Sunday]


MON 16:00 Faith in Music (m0012q5x)
Gustav Mahler

Scottish, Catholic composer Sir James MacMillan considers the faith lives of three very different composers. In this programme, he considers Gustav Mahler’s complex faith life at a time of anti-Semitism and great personal tragedy.

Over the centuries, composers have created musical masterpieces that many listeners have come to regard as spiritual touchstones. For example, Mozart’s Requiem, Mahler’s 2nd Symphony, Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis. But what did these composers actually believe about God, faith, judgement, an afterlife and redemption? And do we need to share these beliefs in any way in order to have a spiritual experience as listeners to their music? Answers to these questions are complex, fascinating and challenging.

In order to take up the directorship of the Vienna State Opera, Gustav Mahler was required to convert from Judaism to Christianity. Was this a purely pragmatic conversion or was there more to this life-changing decision than meets the eye? His Symphonies catalogue his faith journey from some fairly widely accepted Christian views contained in the earlier works through to Buddhist influences and a possible view of reincarnation in his last works. The conductor Bruno Walter said, "Bruckner found his God, but Mahler was always looking"

James MacMillan talks with Mahler scholars - composer David Matthews, writer and musicologist Stephen Johnson and Professor Marilyn McCoy.

Produced by Rosie Boulton
A Must Try Softer production for BBC Radio 4

Mahler Music played:

Mahler 1st Symphony, 1st Movement
Performers: Claudio Abbado / Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
CD title: Mahler 1st Symphony
Deutsche Grammophon

Mahler 2nd Symphony, last movement
Performers: Rattle / CBSO
EMI

Mahler 3rd Symphony
Performers: Claudio Abbado / Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Deutsche Grammophon

Mahler 9th Symphony, 4th Movement
Performers: Claudio Abbado / Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
CD title: Mahler 9th Symphony
Deutsche Grammophon

Mahler 10th Symphony, 1st Movement
Performers: Simon Rattle / Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
CD: Mahler Symphonie 10
Label: EMI

Mahler 10th Symphony, 5th Movement
Performers: Simon Rattle / Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
CD: Mahler Symphonie 10
Label: EMI

Mahler’s Rückert-Lieder Op.44 - Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen
Performers: Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau /Berliner Philharmoniker / Karl Böhm
CD title: Mahler: Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen; Kindertotenlieder; 4 Rückert-Lieder
Deutsche Grammophon


MON 16:30 Beyond Belief (m0012sd4)
Satan

In the popular imagination, Satan is often a figure of evil with horns, hooves, frightening face and wings. But in scripture he does not conform to this stereotype. In Islam (in the form of Iblis) and in Christianity, he is a fallen angel - different to ‘the Satan’ of the Hebrew Bible – but all in sacred writings he is a Tempter and/or Adversary. How has our view of him changed over the centuries and what part does he play in today’s world?

Ernie Rea is joined by three people who have given much thought to Satan. Darren Oldridge is Professor of Early Modern History at the University of Worcester and the author of “The Devil: A Very Short Introduction.” Roni Tabick is the Rabbi of the New Stoke Newington Shul in Hackney. He has studied ancient Hebrew culture and Rabbinic texts. And Dr Sharihan Al-Akhras is a Digital Journalist at the BBC World Service. Her PhD looked at the links between Milton’s Satan in “Paradise Lost” and the Muslim story of Iblis.

Producer: Helen Lee
Editor: Helen Grady


MON 17:00 PM (m0012sd6)
Afternoon news and current affairs programme, reporting on breaking stories and summing up the day's headlines.


MON 18:00 Six O'Clock News (m0012sd8)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4.


MON 18:15 Sandi Toksvig's Hygge (m0012sdb)
Series 2

Krishnan Guru-Murthy

Joining Sandi Toksvig in her cosy log cabin today is Channel 4 news anchor and reporter Krishnan Guru-Murthy. Over a mug of warm spiced wine they explore the concept of Hygge and talk about Australian Christmasses, escaping the news, playing music and who he likes to wake up with every morning.

Starring... Sandi Toksvig
Guest...Krishnan Guru-Murthy
Additional material...Rajiv Karia and Tasha Dhanraj
Producer...Julia McKenzie
Production coordinator...Katie Baum
A BBC Studios Production


MON 18:30 I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue (m0012sdd)
Series 76

Episode 5

The nation's favourite wireless entertainment pays a visit to the Lyric Theatre in Salford. Jon Culshaw and Milton Jones compete against John Finnemore and Vicki Pepperdine with Jack Dee in the chair. Colin Sell provides piano accompaniment. Producer - Jon Naismith. It is a BBC Studios production.


MON 19:00 The Archers (m0012s81)
Jennifer receives a post-Christmas bonus while Harrison’s getting cold feet.


MON 19:15 This Cultural Life (m0011467)
Tracey Emin

Artist Tracey Emin talks openly and honestly to John Wilson about her controversial career and her life, including her experiences of cancer and abortion. She reveals some of the deeply personal aspects of her life that have shaped her work and chooses the moments that have had a profound effect on her art including the extraordinary effect that a painting by Mark Rothko had on her as a young woman, and her friendship with David Bowie.

Producer: Edwina Pitman


MON 20:00 Political Thinking with Nick Robinson (m0012qfy)
The Ed Balls Christmas Special One

Nick Robinson talks to the former Cabinet Minister Ed Balls about cooking, dancing, documentary making and his previous career in politics.


MON 20:30 Crossing Continents (m0012q5v)
The Runaway maids of Oman

Hundreds of young women from Sierra Leone, West Africa, have been trapped in the Arabian sultanate of Oman, desperate to get home. Promised work in shops and restaurants, they say they were tricked into becoming housemaids, working up to 18 hours a day, often without pay, and sometimes abused by their employers. Some ran away, to live a dangerous underground existence at the mercy of the authorities. Now, they are being rescued with the help of charities and diplomats. Back home, some have empowered themselves for the first time, joining a women’s farming collective. But others can’t easily recover from the ill-treatment and isolation they suffered in Arabia.

Reporter: Tim Whewell.

(Photo: Sierra Leonean women hoping for repatriation after leaving their employers in Oman. Credit: Do Bold)


MON 21:00 Wild Inside (m0012qxn)
The Ocean Sunfish

Ben Garrod and Jess French get under the skin of Mola mola the world's largest bony fish to unravel this bizarrely shaped predator's ability to swim to a huge range of depths.

Producer Adrian Washbourne


MON 21:30 Start the Week (m0012scb)
[Repeat of broadcast at 09:00 today]


MON 22:00 The World Tonight (m0012sdh)
In depth reporting, intelligent analysis and breaking news from a global perspective


MON 22:45 Deborah Frances-White Introduces... (m000tmmh)
Episode 1

Travis Alabanza, Scarlett Curtis, Jessica Fostekew and Steve Ali join Deborah Frances-White to tell stories.

Deborah is a comedian and writer best known for The Guilty Feminist podcast which has had 85 million downloads and she has appeared at The Royal Albert Hall, The Sydney Opera House and The London Palladium. She has hosted many storytelling events and, for this special broadcast series, she has picked four very different writers to take part. She gave them all the prompt – The Devil You Know. But the series starts with Deborah’s own piece in which a woman who throws off the life she knows to have a wild adventure.

Across the series you can hear the response of performance artist Travis Alabanza, writer and activist Scarlett Curtis, writer and broadcaster Steve Ali and comedian and actress Jessica Fostekew

Deborah’s BBC Radio 4 show Deborah Frances-White Rolls the Dice won The Writers’ Guild Award for Best Radio Comedy. Her award winning independent film Say My Name premiered in 2019 at The Leicester Square Odeon. Deborah’s book The Guilty Feminist was a Sunday Times Bestseller. She is an Amnesty International Ambassador and Artistic Director of the Secret Policeman legacy brand.

Written and Read by Deborah Frances-White
Producer: Caroline Raphael
Sound: Lucinda Mason Brown
Production Co-ordinator: Sarah Wright

A Pier production for BBC Radio 4


MON 23:00 John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme (m000vypf)
Series 9

Episode 2

The ninth series of John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme is very different to the previous eight. It's still written by John Finnemore, "one of our best sketch writers", (The Observer), and performed by him with "a great supporting cast of Margaret Cabourn-Smith, Simon Kane, Lawry Lewin and Carrie Quinlan" (The Telegraph), and there are still sketches and songs. But, with no live studio audience this year, John has taken the opportunity to try something completely new

Every episode in this series of Souvenir Programme is made up of scenes from one person's life, played in reverse order. There's no narrative to the episode; it's still a sketch show, not a sitcom... but the sketches in each episode all happened to one person, played by one member of the cast, over the course of their lifetime.

Episode two is all about Deborah, and takes place between a catchup Zoom in lockdown one, and a bedtime story she was told in 1962.

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme started in 2011 and quickly established itself as "One of the most consistently funny sketch shows for quite some time" (The Guardian), and "One of the funniest and most inventive new radio comedy shows of recent years" (The Daily Mail).

Written and performed by ... John Finnemore
Deborah ... Margaret Cabourn-Smith
Ensemble ... Lawry Lewin
Ensemble ... Simon Kane
Ensemble ... Carrie Quinlan

Recorded and edited by ... Rich Evans at Syncbox Post
Production coordinator ... Beverly Tagg
Producer ... Ed Morrish

A BBC Studios Production


MON 23:30 Party (m0001r7w)
Christmas Special

Writer Tom Basden reunites the cast of this critically acclaimed Radio 4 series six years on as the group of aspiring political agitators once again apply their small minds to big problems. This Christmas one-off special sees the team reunite one last time to take on Donald Trump.

Starring

Simon ..... Tom Basden
Mel ..... Anna Crilly
Duncan ..... Tim Key
Jared ..... Jonny Sweet
Phoebe ..... Katy Wix

Producer Julia McKenzie
A BBC Studios Production



TUESDAY 28 DECEMBER 2021

TUE 00:00 Midnight News (m0012sdk)
The latest news and weather forecast from BBC Radio 4.


TUE 00:15 Paul Sinha's General Knowledge (m000y0kp)
Series 3

Episode 1

Paul Sinha is an award-winning comedian, a former British Quiz Champion and also, according to the Radio Times, the UK's "funniest fund of forgotten facts". He returns to Radio 4 with a third series of his General Knowledge, recounting the amazing true stories that lie behind fascinating nuggets of information.

This episode catches up with the news since the last series of General Knowledge finished in 2020, from those we've lost to those we've 'liked', and commemorates the Vice President most worthy of being the next to get the 'Hamilton' treatment.

Written and performed by Paul Sinha
Additional material by Oliver Levy
Music by Tim Sutton
Recording engineered by Darren Wardrobe and Mike Smith
Produced by Ed Morrish

A Lead Mojo/Somethin' Else co-production for BBC Radio 4


TUE 00:48 Shipping Forecast (m0012sdm)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


TUE 01:00 Selection of BBC World Service Programmes (m0012sdp)
BBC Radio 4 presents a selection of news and current affairs, arts and science programmes from the BBC World Service.


TUE 05:33 Shipping Forecast (m0012sdr)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


TUE 05:43 Prayer for the Day (m0012sdw)
A spiritual comment and prayer to begin the day with Rev Azariah France-Williams, priest, author and broadcaster.

Good morning, in December 1860 the African-American Harriet Tubman made her last trip on the Underground Railroad. This was not a literal railroad with stations, tickets, and locomotives. Rather the Underground Railroad was a term to describe a vast network of abolitionists, emancipated slaves, safe houses, and people couriers. All of this to provide protected passage for enslaved people running away from captivity, to help navigate harsh territory, and find free states and cities in the north.

Ten years earlier Harriet Tubman had made her own escape, and found a free state to begin again. However the maxim ‘none are free unless all are free’ was one held by her and so she returned to the south, time and time again liberating the enslaved, and helping them avoid the hounds and hunters, sent to recapture them.

She was given the nickname ‘Moses’. She helped over 70 people escape from slavery, and therefore the families and lineages that flowed from those 70. She provided freedom and a future to many because she found a vocation in the midst of the suffering. She could have chosen to embrace her own liberty in a different way, to concentrate on making a future for herself rather than being concerned for those left behind. But instead she used her freedom, at great risk, to create freedom for others.

Liberating God, when we find peace for ourselves, may we be motivated to help others find peace too. When we are gifted with love, may love be our gift to the world. When we discover true freedom in life may that spur us on to be sources of liberation for others.

Amen


TUE 05:45 Farming Today (m0012sdy)
Lake District Valley Tweeds

Sheep have been at the heart of Lake District farming for generations but their wool is worth next to nothing. Coniston farmer Maria Benjamin hopes to change that, for some farmers at least, with Lake District Tweed – Sustainably Hefted Cloth, a new initiative that connects the history and culture of wool production in the Lake District with contemporary Lakeland farming. Wool from farmers in 13 different Lakeland valleys is being used to weave individual valley tweeds with designs inspired by the unique characteristics of each valley, the lakes, the landscape, the geology and the former industry. The material will be sold as throws and by the metre representing valleys including Ennerdale, Windermere and Ullswater.

The project is supported by a grant from the Lake District National Park’s Farming in Protected Landscapes Fund and an already oversubscribed Kickstarter fund. Caz Graham travels to Coniston Water to meet Maria and her flock of Castlemilk Moorit sheep, farmer and knitter Sadie Edmondson, weaver Sheila Phillips and textile designer Louise Dixon.


TUE 05:58 Tweet of the Day (b0979f3x)
Rosa Gleave on the Goldcrest

Rosa Gleave from BirdLife International, reveals how she recognises the song of the goldcrest and why that has inspired a change in her life.

Producer: Eliza Lomas
Photograph: Francis C. Franklin.


TUE 06:00 Today (m0012s7d)
Cumbrian farmer and best-selling author James Rebanks guest-edits the Today programme.

Photo: Stuart Simpson


TUE 09:00 Things Fell Apart (m0012s7g)
A Mock Slave Auction

An incident of racist bullying on Snapchat is currently tearing apart a small town on a lake in Michigan. As the ripples spread, practically every conflict we’ve encountered throughout our series rears its head.

Presented by Jon Ronson
Produced by Sarah Shebbeare
Assistant Producer Sam Peach
Music composed by Phil Channell


TUE 09:30 Four Thought (m0012qh4)
Valuing Care

Ai-jen Poo argues that we should all value caring, and carers.

Ai-jen, a MacArthur Fellow, is Director of the National Domestic Workers Alliance, an advocacy organisation in the United States representing domestic workers, many of them carers. In this powerful, intimate talk, she tells the story of how two of her grandparents' very different experiences when they needed carer emphasised the importance of valuing caring.

Producer: Giles Edwards


TUE 09:45 Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton (m0012s7j)
William - Only Just in Time

In this brilliant story, read by Martin Jarvis and featuring Violet Elizabeth Bott, William has the feeling he’s being ousted from his position as chief. But if he wants to make some money he’d better go along with Violet Elizabeth’s imaginative ideas.

Although there are difficulties along the way there’s an unexpected, rather pleasing denouement.

Written by Richmal Crompton

Read by Martin Jarvis.
A Jarvis & Ayres production for BBC Radio 4


TUE 10:00 Woman's Hour (m0012s7l)
Women of Snow and Ice; Sheila Watt-Cloutier; Antarctic Women; Nancy Campbell and Cold Water Swimming

Sheila Watt-Cloutier, is a world renowned human rights and climate change activist, who has made it her life's work to protect her Inuit culture and the Arctic regions where Inuit live, in Greenland, Canada and Alaska. Sheila was born in Kuujjuaq in Arctic Canada where she lived traditionally, travelling only by dog team for the first ten years of her life. She was elected as President of the Inuit Circumpolar Council in 1995 and launched the first legal petition linking climate change to human rights - work that led to her being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Nancy Campbell is captivated by the stark, rugged beauty of ice and its solid but impermanent nature. Her book The Library of Snow and Ice is about her time spent living in Upernavik, a small town in north-western Greenland and the traces left by explorers of the Arctic and Antarctic. Her recent book Fifty Words for Snow looks at the origins and mythologies of snow around the globe. She shares with Emma her fascination for snow, ice and its place in our world.

British women were banned from visiting Antarctica until 1983 when Janet Thomson was finally granted passage by the British Antarctic Survey. But now scores of women are making major contributions to polar science, especially those working on the stability of ice shelves and sheets. So how did women break through the ice ceiling to create opportunities and become leaders in their fields? Emma speaks to Morgan Seag who has just submitted her PhD in gendered institutional change in 20th century Antarctic science to the University of Cambridge and Jo Johnson who has visited Antarctica seven times with the British Antarctic Survey. We also hear from Dr Alison Banwell, a British glaciologist and research scientist who is currently based at the University of Colorado Boulder and her team conducting research on the ice right now; Rebecca Dell and Laura Stevens.

Heading to the cold of the Arctic and the Antarctic wrapped up in the right gear is one thing but there are some women that actually choose to immerse themselves in freezing water, even in winter here in the UK. Hayley Dorian is one of them, she has set up a swimming group called Wild Sea Women who meet to embrace the waves in North East England and South-West Scotland . But are there benefits of cold water swimming? Emma finds out from Hayley and Dr Heather Massey who works in the Extreme Environments Lab at the University of Portsmouth.


TUE 11:00 Out of the Ordinary (b08hqf5t)
Series 5

Swimming Through Ice

Jolyon Jenkins meets the people who want to swim a mile through freezing cold water. This isn't like a quick dip on New Year's Day - it takes about 40 minutes to swim a mile. As the swimmers battle the second law of thermodynamics, only the fit, or fat, will make it.

Some swimmers acclimatise by sitting in icy paddling pools in their gardens and sleeping without bedclothes. Others pile on the calories to build bulk. But apart from the danger of hypothermia, the risks are legion: cold shock as you enter the water, loss of brain function or motor control leading to drowning, and non-freezing cold injury that can leave sufferers with permanent pain in their extremities. Acclimatisation can even increase the risks, by lowering the temperature at which you start to shiver and generate heat. No wonder that not everyone thinks ice swimming is a good idea.

So why do the ice swimmers want to do it? Jolyon travels to the ice swimming world championships in Bavaria to find out.

Presenter/producer: Jolyon Jenkins.


TUE 11:30 Will-of-the-Dump (m00120wj)
Will Self tells the story of his black bin bag... from his back door... to its final destination. It's the story of a modern-day dump - an extraordinary, alien, nauseating world - where, instead of being buried, the rubbish will go up in smoke.

Voices of waste workers intermingle with the rubbish in a go-round of garbage, scored by Jon Nicholls. There are the bin men who believe 'you just gotta get in the groove' as they walk ten miles a day, to 'pick up a bit of crap, sling it in the back of the lorry and take it down the dump'. There's the weighbridge clerk at the sorting facility taking pride in separating the 'sheepy recycling from the goatish garbage' to load it onto enormous steel containers. Boatmen on the Thames steer these huge barges, bright orange in colour, past the great landmarks of London in 'a cockney pas-de-deux danced with detritus'. Downriver, the bag arrives at its destination - a giant industrial incinerator where ten thousand tonnes of waste are going up in flames, at temperatures of 850 degrees. 'Some people are mesmerized by it', we hear. Will's black bag meets its 'fiery and apocalyptic end'.

It's a raw, unnerving look at our relationship with our waste.

Sound designer: Jon Nicholls
Producer: Adele Armstrong


TUE 12:00 News Summary (m0012s7n)
National and international news from BBC Radio 4


TUE 12:04 The Princess Bride (m0012s7q)
Bitesize Backstories: The Bride

“This is my favourite book in all the world, though I have never read it”. When Goldman discovers The Princess Bride by S Morgenstern is not the swashbuckling fantasy his father read him as a child, but is in fact a patchy and extensive historical satire, he sets out to create the “Good Parts” version…

A tale of true love and high adventure featuring a fighting giant that loves to rhyme, a swordsman on the ultimate quest for revenge, a pirate in love with a princess, a princess in love with a farm boy and a prince in love with war.

First a novel, then a film, now an audio experience:

The Best Bits of the Good Parts Version by Stephen Keyworth.

A two-part dramatisation of swashbuckling adventure plus five bitesize backstories which can be enjoyed as stand-alone stories or to enhance your experience of the drama.

Bitesize Backstories: The Bride

How the most beautiful woman in the world discovers her true love.

Reader: Grant O’Rourke
Producer: Kirsty Williams

Sound recording: Iain McKinna
Editing: Joanne Willott


TUE 12:18 You and Yours (m0012s7s)
News and discussion of consumer affairs


TUE 12:57 Weather (m0012s7v)
The latest weather forecast


TUE 13:00 World at One (m0012s7x)
Forty-five minutes of news, analysis and comment, with Jonny Dymond.


TUE 13:45 Call to Kabul (m0012smt)
Safe in the North

In the second programme Anita spends time with Naqeeb and his family in Manchester. They’re safe and grateful, but the future is uncertain and their battle is far from over. Naqeeb knows the Taliban is searching for him: one of his brothers, a surgeon, has already been tortured and killed by men hoping to find and kill him. His other brother, a doctor with the World Health Organisation, has gone into hiding.

Paul, a former officer in the Marines, helps Naqeeb settle into his new life in Manchester, finding school places for the youngest of his six children and talking to eighteen year old Aisha and 19 year old Mohammed, about University applications. They were both embarking on medical degrees in Afghanistan and now have to start again in a country they don't know at all. It is a daunting prospect and it's taking place as they confront fears about friends they've left behind.

Exposure on the BBC’s Any Answers programme in August was critical in saving Naqeeb’s life. The transmission of pleas made by the former officer reached MPs, Government ministers and others able to assist. Eight years earlier the interpreter, Naqeeb, had helped to save eight soldiers from an attack by a suicide bomber. Now those same soldiers want to repay that loyalty and help the family find housing, employment and stability.

This isn’t a unique story, it has cross-over with so many other experiences, but by telling it in such detail it highlights the terrifying reality faced by those dealing with the consequences of the allied forces withdrawal. It also brings home how bonds forged in life and death situations many years ago can lead to such powerful actions now.

Produced by Sue Mitchell
Presented by Anita Anand


TUE 14:00 The Archers (m0012s81)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Monday]


TUE 14:15 Drama (m000p0t6)
Meltdown

by Tessa Gibbs

with Joanna Lumley

A famous actress reaches the end of her patience with selfies and the demands of strangers in this comedy about the tension between fame and privacy.

Emily Sanders ..... Joanna Lumley
Frank ..... Robert Glenister
Tara ..... Claire Rushbrook
Anita ..... Maggie Service
Noah/The Fan ..... Ben Onwukwe
Evan Davis as himself

Directed by Gaynor Macfarlane


TUE 15:00 The Kitchen Cabinet (m0012rj5)
[Repeat of broadcast at 16:30 on Sunday]


TUE 15:30 Michael Palin's Memory Palaces: Terry Gilliam (m000xm6p)
An odyssey set inside the strange and wonderful mind of Terry Gilliam. Michael Palin invents fantastical new interview technology to fire James Peak deep inside Terry Gilliam's 'memory palace'.

Join them for an encounter that takes in Terry's films, the Monty Python foot, what it is like to have your obituary published in Variety magazine before you're dead, and why it always pays to have a Beatle on your side.

Starring Terry Gilliam, Michael Palin, Andre Jacquemin and James Peak
Produced by Andre Jacquemin and James Peak

An Essential Radio production for BBC Radio 4


TUE 16:00 Consumed by Desire (m0012s83)
I don't think we know the difference between wants and needs

Psychotherapist and writer Philippa Perry attempts to unpick the idea of desire.

We live in a world where we get what we want. Strawberries in January, the instant Uber, new clothes, all the music we could ever want, news in our pocket and constant connection via the digital world. And all to be easy and instant. However, we're also struggling to understand the world in which we live. It's not something we seem to enjoy. Sometimes we say it's 'inhuman'.

It may be that we could benefit from a clearer understanding of desire -- and our desires.

We live in an age of desire, but also an age of discontent. The gap between the urge and its fulfilment is now shorter than ever. But rather than making us more content, this short-circuit seems often to frustrate our capacity to understand and therefore control our desires.

A desire satisfied is often merely a desire reinforced or reinvented: in Freud's phrase, desire is always in excess of any item's ability to satisfy it. In times – technological, political, personal – when we are promised satisfaction, how does the inevitable falling short affect us, and what new and strange desires does it spawn?

Featuring Michael Landy, Adam Phillips, Ash Sarkar, Rory Sutherland and John Yorke.

Readings by Catherine Dyson

Producer: Martin Williams


TUE 16:30 Great Lives (m0012s85)
Noor-Un-Nissa Inayat Khan

Noor-Un-Nissa Inayat Khan was an Indian muslim princess who became an under-cover agent for the ‘SOE’ – Churchill’s Special Operational Executive. She’s one of only a handful of women in the second world war awarded The George Cross, the highest civilian decoration in the UK.

Noor's story will take us from Moscow to London, then Paris. There will be Sufism interwoven with Indian classical music and tales of sultans and maharajas. Her life championed by actor, writer and director Priyanga Burford, known for roles in ‘Innocent’ and ‘Silent Witness’ and the comedy series ‘The Thick of It’. She’s also had a brush with espionage herself, appearing as a scientist in the James Bond blockbuster ‘No Time to Die’.

Having discovered Noor whilst searching for inspiration for her own writing, Priyanga became fascinated by a woman who defied expectations and demonstrated immense courage and bravery. Discussion features guest expert Sufiya Ahmed, author of 'My Story: Noor-Un-Nissa Inayat Khan'.

Presented by Matthew Parris
Produced by Nicola Humphries


TUE 17:00 PM (m0012s87)
Afternoon news and current affairs programme, reporting on breaking stories and summing up the day's headlines.


TUE 18:00 Six O'Clock News (m0012s89)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4.


TUE 18:15 Sandi Toksvig's Hygge (m0012s8c)
Series 2

Gina Miller

Joining Sandi Toksvig in her cosy log cabin today is campaigner and wealth consultant Gina Miller. Over a mug of berry tea they explore the concept of Hygge and chat about family, country walks and free climbing, comic-book superheroes, 3am scrabble and watching classic movies.

Starring... Sandi Toksvig
Guest...Gina Miller
Additional material... Tasha Dhanraj and Rajiv Karia
Producer...Julia McKenzie
Production coordinator...Katie Baum
A BBC Studios Production


TUE 18:30 It's a Fair Cop (b0bgrxvk)
Series 4

The Wrath of Zeus

Another chance to hear an episode from 2018. Police officer and comedian Alfie Moore presents the show in which the audience make the policing decisions in a real-life case. Alfie has more than fifteen year's experience in the Humberside police force to draw from and in this episode, Alfie uses a case from his time in the Dog Section, where he deployed his dog Zeus in a robbery chase.

Written and presented by ….. Alfie Moore
Script-editor ….. Will Ing
Producer ….. Alison Vernon-Smith
A BBC Studios Production


TUE 19:00 The Archers (m0012qgf)
Kirsty has another cross to bear and someone’s flashing the cash.


TUE 19:15 This Cultural Life (m0010fl3)
Kenneth Branagh

Actor and filmmaker Sir Kenneth Branagh talks to John Wilson for the first of a new series of interviews in which the world’s leading cultural figures discuss their key influences and inspirations. In a wide-ranging conversation, Branagh reveals some of his most formative artistic experiences and his creative process.

He remembers his working class upbringing in late 60s Northern Ireland at the start of The Troubles, as explored in his most personal film to date, Belfast. Branagh also traces the beginnings of his love for Shakespeare back to the discovery of LP recordings of Laurence Olivier and John Gielgud, and reveals his admiration for Thomas Hardy and the Alan Bleasdale's 1980s television series The Boys from the Blackstuff.

Producer: Edwina Pitman


TUE 20:00 Able to Parent (m000v2t4)
Emily Yates and her partner Christopher ' CJ' Johnston have been together four years. CJ really wants a baby but Emily - a wheelchair-user with Cerebral Palsy - has fears and barriers that she feels she needs to overcome.

Will she be able to carry a baby? What extra strain will her disability put on her and CJ's relationship as parents? What impact will her disability have on their child as he or she grows up?

To help quell these concerns and make a final decision, the couple look around them for advice and inspiration. They meet Kelly, a powerchair-user and mum to two boys, who offers practical advice on handling trickier situations. Megan was raised by a paraplegic mother and gives a child's perspective, while the artist Alison Lapper - arguably Britain's highest-profile disabled parent - shares her story, including the astonishing level of vitriol she received during her pregnancy. In 2019, Alison's son Parys tragically died of an accidental drug overdose. How will this experience colour Alison's advice to Emily and CJ?

As they explore all this together, Emily increasingly realises that many of the barriers she faces are ones of perception rather than practicality.

Producer: Leeanne Coyle
A Bespoken Media production for BBC Radio 4


TUE 20:40 In Touch (m0012s8h)
News, views and information for people who are blind or partially sighted


TUE 21:00 All in the Mind (m0012qgk)
Looking inside the minds of our pets - and our relationships with them

Delving into animals' minds - and our relationships with them - Claudia Hammond wonders whether our pets care if we get hurt. Would a dog - or even a cat - give a monkey's if their owner fell over? Researchers like Dr Karen Hiestand are keen to explore the differences between canine and feline reactions. At the University of Sussex she works in the field of anthrozoology - analysing the relationship between humans and other animals. In one study she asked dog and cat owners to feign injury, setting up small cameras in their homes to monitor reactions, hoping to find out if the pet have empathy. We hear about the initial findings.

For years our understanding of animals was limited by attitudes like that of Descartes who thought they were merely machines made of flesh. Charles Darwin famously wrote in The Expression of Emotions in Man and Animals that animal minds only differed from our own by degree, not in kind. Today some of the methods scientists use to measure animal responses are adapted from studies on children who've not yet learned to talk.

Mental health campaigner and All in the Mind Awards judge Marion Janner used to take her support dog Buddy wherever she was went, whether it was onto mental health wards or into the BBC studios. Marion says she helped to keep her safe during crises related to her borderline personality disorder because she knew she couldn't do anything which prevented her from looking after Buddy. Last year when Buddy died Marion gained comfort from her other dogs and an aquarium filled with fish.

On a walk in the park, we hear how Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy Polly has similarly helped her owner Sam to come to terms with the death of her previous dog Margo. The whole family was devastated by the loss and put a large plant where Margo's bed used to be because the room felt so empty. The Blue Cross for Pets charity offers support to anyone who's lost a pet - on the phone and online. We hear from their Bereavement and Loss Support Service manager Diane James about it can affect people as profoundly as human loss.

Cats have had a bit of an image problem - as the recent headline "How to Tell if Your Cat is a Psychopath" shows. Karen Hiestand says their apparent aloofness and accusations of laziness arise because we forget that they are solitary creatures, descended from wildcats who hunt and then sleep it off. She hopes the explosion in cat research will help us to understand our feline friends better.


TUE 21:30 Things Fell Apart (m0012s7g)
[Repeat of broadcast at 09:00 today]


TUE 22:00 The World Tonight (m0012s8k)
In depth reporting, intelligent analysis and breaking news from a global perspective


TUE 22:45 Deborah Frances-White Introduces... (m000tlwf)
Episode 2

Deborah Frances-White is a comedian and writer best known for The Guilty Feminist podcast. She has also hosted many storytelling events and,for this special broadcast series,she gave everyone the prompt – The Devil You Know.

In Travis Alabanza’s story we meet the devil in their own life who became too close for comfort.

Travis is a performance artist and writer. Their most recent drama Overflow was performed at the Bush in December before moving online; it has received critical acclaim, including numerous four star reviews. Their debut show Burgerz, which they also performed in, won a number of awards including the Total Theatre Award at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2019.

Deborah Frances-White is a comedian and writer. The Guilty Feminist podcast has had 85 million downloads and she has appeared at The Royal Albert Hall, The Sydney Opera House and The London Palladium. Her BBC Radio 4 show Deborah Frances-White Rolls the Dice won The Writers’ Guild Award for Best Radio Comedy. Her award winning independent film Say My Name premiered in 2019 at The Leicester Square Odeon. Deborah’s book The Guilty Feminist was a Sunday Times Bestseller. She is an Amnesty International Ambassador and Artistic Director of the Secret Policeman legacy brand.

Written and Read by Travis Alabanza
Producer: Deborah Frances-White
Executive Producer: Caroline Raphael
Sound: Lucinda Mason Brown
Production Co-ordinator: Sarah Wright
A Pier production for BBC Radio 4


TUE 23:00 John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme (m000w5jh)
Series 9

Episode 3

The ninth series of John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme is very different to the previous eight. It's still written by John Finnemore, "one of our best sketch writers", (The Observer), and performed by him with "a great supporting cast of Margaret Cabourn-Smith, Simon Kane, Lawry Lewin and Carrie Quinlan" (The Telegraph), and there are still sketches and songs. But, with no live studio audience this year, John has taken the opportunity to try something completely new

Every episode in this series of Souvenir Programme is made up of scenes from one person's life, played in reverse order. There's no narrative to the episode; it's still a sketch show, not a sitcom... but the sketches in each episode all happened to one person, played by one member of the cast, over the course of their lifetime.

This week, we follow our way back through the life of Jerry, starting earlier this year and going back to a wartime poem in 1943.

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme started in 2011 and quickly established itself as "One of the most consistently funny sketch shows for quite some time" (The Guardian), and "One of the funniest and most inventive new radio comedy shows of recent years" (The Daily Mail).

Written and performed by ... John Finnemore
Jerry ... Simon Kane
Ensemble ... Lawry Lewin
Ensemble ... Margaret Cabourn-Smith
Ensemble ... Carrie Quinlan

Original music composed by .... Susannah Pearse
Original music arranged by ... Susannah Pearse and Tim Sutton
Recorded and edited by ... Rich Evans at Syncbox Post
Production coordinator ... Beverly Tagg
Producer ... Ed Morrish

A BBC Studios Production


TUE 23:30 Slow Radio Comedy (m000zv4s)
From Jon Holmes, sound art meets comedy as performers swap the stage for immersive natural environments.

Simon Evans, Lemn Sissay, Natasha Hodgson, and Poppy and Rubina from the Brown Girls Do It Too podcast move their mics away from the studio to forests, beaches, and hillsides, where the sounds of nature become both their audience and co-star.

Recorded in binaural stereo.

An Unusual production for BBC Radio 4



WEDNESDAY 29 DECEMBER 2021

WED 00:00 Midnight News (m0012s8m)
The latest news and weather forecast from BBC Radio 4.


WED 00:15 Paul Sinha's General Knowledge (m000y6p4)
Series 3

Episode 2

Paul Sinha is an award-winning comedian, a former British Quiz Champion and also, according to the Radio Times, the UK's "funniest fund of forgotten facts". He returns to Radio 4 with a third series of his General Knowledge, recounting the amazing true stories that lie behind fascinating nuggets of information.

This episode finally lives up to the title of the series, by focusing mainly on facts and stories regarding generals. But it's also, somehow, connected to Kevin Bacon, and there's time at the end to take a look at things you probably don't know about Oscar-winning actresses.

Written and performed by Paul Sinha
Additional material by Oliver Levy
Recording engineered by Darren Wardrobe and Mike Smith
Produced by Ed Morrish

A Lead Mojo/Somethin' Else co-production for BBC Radio 4


WED 00:48 Shipping Forecast (m0012s8p)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


WED 01:00 Selection of BBC World Service Programmes (m0012s8r)
BBC Radio 4 presents a selection of news and current affairs, arts and science programmes from the BBC World Service.


WED 05:33 Shipping Forecast (m0012s8t)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


WED 05:43 Prayer for the Day (m0012s8y)
A spiritual comment and prayer to begin the day with Rev Azariah France-Williams, priest, author and broadcaster.

Good Morning.

On this day in 1862 it is thought that the bowling ball was invented. I remember so many holiday clubs I attended where a trip to the bowling alley was a real treat. I was no good at it but would give it some welly and cross my fingers. Maybe I should have crossed my fingers after I launched it… Sometimes in my enthusiasm I would see my ball fly over the barrier and into another lane altogether! No wonder people would stand back when it was my turn. I just wished the lanes were wider,

In the 1990’s, bowling club membership fell into a steep decline, not on my account I hope. No this was indicative of a shift across western society at large. People were not signing up as members, and new recruits were not finding their way into these old institutions. Furthermore funding to other sectors of society like our libraries was being cut. The sociologist Robert Putnam wrote the book Bowling Alone where he documented the breakdown and loss of community.

The words austerity and decline can cloud our thinking. However as we approach a new year maybe it is time get the ball rolling. I was inspired to learn of a project in New York where elderly people are encouraged to join a virtual bowling league at their local library where they bowl against other teams using Nintendo Wii’s The leagues are really popular. Two fading institutions, combined with new tech and old fingers, to make a new type of belonging.

God of Play, help us to see how the things seemingly fading in the world around us can find new life and fresh impetus. Holy Spirit breathe life into us and into the areas of society that need your hope and renewal.

Amen


WED 05:45 Farming Today (m0012s90)
Culm Grassland

Sarah Swadling goes in search of one of the UK’s rarest farmland habitats, Culm Grassland. Around 90% of Culm has been lost to drainage, reseeding of pastures, and forestry. Its heartland is North Devon and North Cornwall, where farmers and conservationists are working together to preserve and restore the special blend of plants which makes Culm Grassland unique, and a haven for wildlife.


WED 05:58 Tweet of the Day (b08v08m2)
Jimi Goodwin on the Mallard

Musician Jimi Goodwin of Doves on an extraordinary encounter with a mallard, a kestrel, plus many chicks ... up a tree, in this Tweet of the Day

Producer Miles Warde.


WED 06:00 Today (m0012qfn)
England and Manchester City footballer Raheem Sterling guest-edits the programme.


WED 09:00 The Reunion (m0012qfq)
Love Actually

Love Actually was the 2003 romantic comedy film, written and directed by Richard Curtis, which has grown in popularity over the years to become a Christmas classic.

It featured a stellar cast, but also many supporting actors who have gone on to have successful film careers. With multiple overlapping storylines, the film drew inspiration from Robert Altman’s Short Cuts and Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction, and features numerous memorable scenes and one-liners. It was a box-office smash, grossing $246 million worldwide and was nominated for the Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture (Comedy).

Kirsty Wark brings together stars from the film including Bill Nighy who became a household name after playing ageing rocker Billy Mack.

After a difficult few years in the media spotlight, EastEnders actress and pop singer Martine McCutcheon reveals how she was set to give up on showbusiness - until she got a call inviting her to play opposite Hugh Grant in Curtis's new film.

Child actor Thomas Brodie-Sangster played Sam, who learned to play the drums to catch the eye of his school crush. Thomas explains why he was reluctant to even come to the audition.

Olivia Olson was the 10-year-old who played Sam's love interest. She tells Kirsty how she had to record her scene-stealing song again - because it was too good the first time.

Lucia Moniz, was better known as a pop star in her native Portugal when she was cast to play Colin Firth's housekeeper, but only after her audition where she had to swim in thin air!

And producer Duncan Kenworthy, long-time collaborator of Curtis, explains how he encouraged him to change the storyline between Emma Thompson and Alan Rickman to make it sad.

Producer: Karen Pirie
Series Producer: David Prest
A Whistledown production for BBC Radio 4


WED 09:45 Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton (m0012qfs)
William the Great Actor

A famous thespian, staying locally, is befriended by William. When the actor attends the village play, William naturally promotes himself from off-stage helper to star of the show.

Comic chaos and a surprising outcome.

Written by Richmal Crompton

Read by Martin Jarvis.
A Jarvis & Ayres production for BBC Radio 4


WED 10:00 Woman's Hour (m0012qfw)
Donna Ward on reclaiming spinsterhood, Comedian Liz Kingsman, Scars - Jayne, BBC 100 Objects

Australian author Donna Ward’s new book She I Dare Not Name: A Spinster's Meditations on Life explores the meaning and purpose she has fought to find in a life lived entirely accidentally without a partner or children.

Image: Donna Ward
Credit: Amanda Ford


WED 11:00 Political Thinking with Nick Robinson (m0012qfy)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 on Monday]


WED 11:30 The Casebook of Max and Ivan (m000cn0p)
Case #524 - New Year's Evil

Acclaimed double-act Max and Ivan return one last time as incompetent private detectives for hire.

It’s New Year’s Eve, but any plans for celebration are put on ice as Max and Ivan are tasked with investigating fearsome crime family matriarch, Mama Shanks - played by special guest Katherine Parkinson.

Word on the street is that she has something big planned for this very evening but, in a plot that takes in vaping, Andrew Lloyd-Webber and 10,000 bees, can Max and Ivan find out what it going down before it is too late?

Cast:
Max ..... Max Olesker
Ivan ..... Ivan Gonzalez
Martha Shanks ..... Katherine Parkinson
Narrator / Malcolm McMichaelmas ..... Lewis MacLeod
Lumpy ..... Jessica Ransom
PC Gribble ..... David Reed

Written by Max Olesker and Ivan Gonzalez
Original music by Huw Olesker and Samuel H James
Developed by John Stanley Productions
Produced by Ben Walker
A Hare and Tortoise production for BBC Radio 4


WED 12:00 News Summary (m0012qg0)
National and international news from BBC Radio 4


WED 12:04 The Princess Bride (m0012qg2)
Bitesize Backstories: The Prince

“This is my favourite book in all the world, though I have never read it”. When Goldman discovers The Princess Bride by S Morgenstern is not the swashbuckling fantasy his father read him as a child, but is in fact a patchy and extensive historical satire, he sets out to create the “Good Parts” version…

A tale of true love and high adventure featuring a fighting giant that loves to rhyme, a swordsman on the ultimate quest for revenge, a pirate in love with a princess, a princess in love with a farm boy and a prince in love with war.

First a novel, then a film, now an audio experience:

The Best Bits of the Good Parts Version by Stephen Keyworth.

A two-part dramatisation of swashbuckling adventure plus five bitesize backstories which can be enjoyed as stand-alone stories or to enhance your experience of the drama.

Bitesize Backstories: The Prince

Prince Humperdinck loves nothing more fighting and wars. But when he realises his father is dying, it’s time to find him a suitable bride.

Reader: Grant O’Rourke
Producer: Kirsty Williams

Sound recording: Iain McKinna
Editing: Joanne Willott


WED 12:18 You and Yours (m0012qg5)
News and discussion of consumer affairs


WED 12:57 Weather (m0012qg7)
The latest weather forecast


WED 13:00 World at One (m0012qg9)
Forty-five minutes of news, analysis and comment, with Jonny Dymond.


WED 13:45 Call to Kabul (m0012smw)
The Story of Three Brothers

Naqeeb receives confirmation that one of his brothers has been publicly executed in the Kandahar region. The surviving brother, Dr Hijrat Nabee Zada, is a doctor at the World Health Organisation and before the Taliban takeover he was overseeing the polio vaccination programme.

In calls to Anita he describes his new life as he moves between safe houses with his wife, Aziza and their three young children. They are very frightened and know that their only hope is to leave the country. His employers say there’s nothing they can do and so it falls on Paul, a former officer int he Marines, to make a plan.

This programme follows the efforts Naqeeb and Paul are making to get his brother to safety. Exposure on the BBC’s Any Answers programme in August was critical in saving Naqeeb’s life. The transmission of pleas made by the former officer reached MPs, Government ministers and others able to assist.

Eight years earlier the interpreter, Naqeeb, had helped to save eight soldiers from an attack by a suicide bomber. Now those same soldiers wanted to repay that loyalty and an unofficial alliance is formed as they work behind the scenes to plan a way forward

Produced by Sue Mitchell
Presented by Anita Anand


WED 14:00 The Archers (m0012qgf)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Tuesday]


WED 14:15 Drama (m000czys)
My Dad's Wardrobe

By Frazer Flintham.

A comedic adventure about a 12-year-old boy's attempts to recover his dad's clothes. But there's much more to Louie's mission than merely getting out of trouble.

Louie ..... Aaron Gelkoff
John ..... Luca Evans
Mum .... Heather Craney
Sam ..... Ikky Elyas
Dad ..... Clive Hayward
Clodd ..... Gerard McDermott
Dean ..... Will Kirk
Mary ..... Lucy Reynolds
Charity shop man ..... Neil McCaul
Librarian ..... Jessica Turner
Park-Keeper ..... Adam Courting
Heather ..... Sinead MacInnes
Park woman ..... Laura Christy
T-Shirt girl ..... Scarlett Courtney
Swimming coach ..... Greg Jones

Director: David Hunter


WED 15:00 Money Box (m0012qgh)
Relationships and Money

How we manage financial relationships with the people we care about. whether it be sharing money, lending it or simply having a different view about money from your partner, it can lead to friction or arguments with those closest to us.

Felicity Hannah is joined in the studio with Dee Holmes, a counselor from the relationship charity Relate and Julie Flynn, an independent financial advisor & certified financial coach, as well as listeners Mohammed, Ollie, Sarwar and Sally who share their experiences.

Producer Smita Patel
Editor Emma Rippon


WED 15:30 All in the Mind (m0012qgk)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Tuesday]


WED 16:00 Thinking Allowed (m0012qgm)
The Value of Things

The value of things: At a time when many of us are sorting through Christmas presents, both wanted and unwanted, Laurie Taylor explores the value of attachment in a disposable world. Christine Harold, Professor of Communication at the University of Washington, asks why we hang on to certain objects and discard others. How might our emotional investment in things be harnessed to create less wasteful practices? Also, clutter in our homes, from the meaningless to the meaningful. Sophie Woodward, Professor of Sociology at the University of Manchester, challenges the moralistic view of clutter, one which sees it as a sign of individual failure to organise one’s domestic life. Instead, she argues, it is central to the ways we negotiate and manage our intimate relationships.

Producer: Jayne Egerton


WED 16:30 The Media Show (m0012qgp)
The Secret Life of the Continuity Announcer

Their voices resound in living rooms across the country, but how much do we really know about the people who talk between the programmes? From impeccable composure to a catchy turn of phrase, there’s a lot that goes into good continuity. So what does the future hold for this familiar feature of TV and radio – is it set to go the same way as teletext or the Red Button?

Guests: Duncan Newmarch, announcer for BBC One and BBC Two; Andrea Fox, ITV announcer; Jeanna Gallagher, announcer for Channel 4 and Film 4; Jane Steel, announcer and newsreader for BBC Radio 4; David Allan, former announcer on BBC Television.

Producer: Dan Hardoon

Presenter: Katie Razzall

Studio engineer: John Boland

Editor: Richard Hooper


WED 17:00 PM (m0012qgr)
Afternoon news and current affairs programme, reporting on breaking stories and summing up the day's headlines.


WED 18:00 Six O'Clock News (m0012qgt)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4.


WED 18:15 Sandi Toksvig's Hygge (m0012qgw)
Series 2

Andy Hamilton

Joining Sandi Toksvig in her cosy log cabin today is comedian and writer Andy Hamilton. Over a cup of Danish tea the old friends chat about Hygge and how to keep technology at bay, the sound of football supporters watching a match, hopeless DIY and eavesdropping.

Starring... Sandi Toksvig
Guest... Andy Hamilton
Additional material...Rajiv Karia and Tasha Dhanraj
Producer...Julia McKenzie
Production coordinator...Katie Baum
A BBC Studios Production


WED 18:30 The Missing Hancocks (m000qmpv)
Series 4

New Year Resolutions

The Missing Hancocks recreates those episodes of the classic Hancock's Half Hour that have been wiped or lost from the archive.

The first modern sitcom, Hancock's Half Hour made stars of Tony Hancock, Sid James and Kenneth Williams, and launched Ray Galton and Alan Simpson as one of the most successful comedy-writing partnerships in history. But 20 episodes of the show were missing from the BBC archives. Now, after four highly successful series, the final batch of those episodes have been lovingly re-recorded in front of a live audience at the BBC Radio Theatre.

Tonight's episode: Hancock announces his list of New Year Resolutions, and is confident he can stick to them. Bill Kerr is equally confident that this is a money-making opportunity.

Written by Ray Galton and Alan Simpson, and with the classic score re-recorded by the BBC Concert Orchestra, the show stars Kevin McNally, Kevin Eldon, Simon Greenall, Robin Sebastian and Susy Kane, and with a special guest appearance by Paul Merton. New Year's Resolutions was first broadcast on the 4th January, 1956.

Produced by Neil Pearson & Hayley Sterling.

Written by Ray Galton & Alan Simpson

Music recorded by the BBC Concert Orchestra, conducted by Levon Parikian

A BBC Studios Production


WED 19:00 The Archers (m0012qh0)
Alice gets a rude awakening while Alan opens Harrison’s eyes.


WED 19:15 This Cultural Life (m0010n89)
Bernardine Evaristo

Author Bernardine Evaristo talks to John Wilson about the formative experiences and cultural influences that have had a profound effect on her work.
She looks back on her early childhood in South London, the racism she encountered and how she found her artistic voice attending a youth theatre group. She reveals the influence of her Catholic upbringing on her writing, and the personal relationships that had the biggest impact on her creativity.

Producer: Edwina Pitman


WED 20:00 Moral Maze (m0012qh2)
Meaning

The end of one year and the beginning of another can be an obvious moment for people to set goals and reset priorities. The pandemic, from which we are yet to emerge, has put much into perspective and has doubtless prompted many to ask the question: where am I going with my life? What’s it all about? While none of us can truly know the meaning of life, most of us are meaning-seeking creatures who have our own ideas about what gives life meaning – God, nature, the arts, human relationships, good food, scientific progress. Is meaning essential to a life well lived or do we put too much pressure on ourselves in trying to create it? For some, the stories we tell about ourselves are the most powerful way of addressing existential questions like the climate crisis. Yet meaning is subjective, and is often separated by national, cultural, religious and ideological borders. Can our disparate human stories be harnessed as a motivator for collective action on the climate? Or is it hubris to suggest human beings can find a solution, and the story we should be telling instead is one in which the cavalry isn’t coming?

Michael Buerk chairs this special end-of-year debate with guest panellists: Rowan Williams, Alice Roberts, Will Self and Bonnie Greer. With witnesses: Emily Esfahani-Smith, James Tartaglia, Martin Palmer and Charlotte Du Cann.

Producer: Dan Tierney.

#moralmaze


WED 20:45 Four Thought (m0012qh4)
[Repeat of broadcast at 09:30 on Tuesday]


WED 21:00 The Flipside with Paris Lees (p0b05w53)
Forgive me, not?

We hear stories from a Palestinian whose young daughter was killed by an Israeli soldier, and an Australian who killed a man in a car accident after a night of partying. Paris asks them questions about how they can forgive others and themselves.

The Flipside is hosted by Paris Lees, and written by Hannah Varrall and Paris Lees.
The Assistant Producer is Lucy Evans,
The Production Manager is Emily Jarvis.
Audio engineering is by Chris Carter and Nick Webb and it is mixed by Mau Loseto.
It’s produced by Hannah Varrall and the Executive Producer is Rubina Pabani.
It’s made by ITN Productions for BBC Radio 4.


WED 21:30 The Media Show (m0012qgp)
[Repeat of broadcast at 16:30 today]


WED 22:00 The World Tonight (m0012qh6)
In depth reporting, intelligent analysis and breaking news from a global perspective


WED 22:45 Deborah Frances-White Introduces... (m000tlbn)
Episode 3

Deborah Frances-White is a comedian and writer best known for The Guilty Feminist podcast. She has also hosted many storytelling events and, for this special broadcast series, she gave everyone the prompt – The Devil You Know. Tonight you can hear Scarlett Curtis’ story.

Scarlett Curtis is the curator of the Sunday Times Bestseller and National Book Award winning Feminists Don’t Wear Pink (& other lies), a collection of essays by 52 women on what feminism means to them, and followed that with It’s Not Okay to Feel Blue (& other lies) about mental health.

She has written for The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Daily Mail and Vogue and is currently contributing editor at The Sunday Times Style. She co-founded The Pink Protest, a feminist activist collective committed to helping young people take action online and IRL. To date they have been a part of campaigns that have changed two laws - a bill to help end period poverty and to get FGM into the Children’s Act. Scarlett was awarded The Changemaker Award for young activists in November 2019. Scarlett is currently a UN Women UK advocate and on the advisory board for Chime for Change.

Deborah Frances-White is a comedian and writer. The Guilty Feminist podcast has had 85 million downloads and she has appeared at The Royal Albert Hall, The Sydney Opera House and The London Palladium. Her BBC Radio 4 show Deborah Frances-White Rolls the Dice won The Writers’ Guild Award for Best Radio Comedy. Her award winning independent film Say My Name premiered in 2019 at The Leicester Square Odeon. Deborah’s book The Guilty Feminist was a Sunday Times Bestseller. She is an Amnesty International Ambassador and Artistic Director of the Secret Policeman legacy brand.

Written and Read by Scarlett Curtis
Producer: Deborah Frances-White
Executive Producer: Caroline Raphael
Sound: Lucinda Mason Brown
Production Co-ordinator: Sarah Wright

A Pier production for BBC Radio 4

BBC Action Line
If you are experiencing emotional stress, help and support is available from the organisations listed here:
https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/4WLs5NlwrySXJR2n8Snszdg/emotional-distress-information-and-support


WED 23:00 John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme (m000wcyr)
Series 9

Episode 4

The ninth series of John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme is very different to the previous eight. It's still written by John Finnemore, "one of our best sketch writers", (The Observer), and performed by him with "a great supporting cast of Margaret Cabourn-Smith, Simon Kane, Lawry Lewin and Carrie Quinlan" (The Telegraph), and there are still sketches and songs. But, with no live studio audience this year, John has taken the opportunity to try something completely new

Every episode in this series of Souvenir Programme is made up of scenes from one person's life, played in reverse order. There's no narrative to the episode; it's still a sketch show, not a sitcom... but the sketches in each episode all happened to one person, played by one member of the cast, over the course of their lifetime.

Episode four is about Vanessa, and starts with a television quiz show in 1990, and ends with a fairytale walk in 1921.

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme started in 2011 and quickly established itself as "One of the most consistently funny sketch shows for quite some time" (The Guardian), and "One of the funniest and most inventive new radio comedy shows of recent years" (The Daily Mail).

Written and performed by ... John Finnemore
Vanessa ... Carrie Quinlan
Ensemble ... Lawry Lewin
Ensemble ... Margaret Cabourn-Smith
Ensemble ... Simon Kane

Original music composed by .... Susannah Pearse
Original music arranged by ... Susannah Pearse and Tim Sutton
Recorded and edited by ... Rich Evans at Syncbox Post
Production coordinator ... Beverly Tagg
Producer ... Ed Morrish

A BBC Studios Production


WED 23:30 Ruby Wax Talking Human (m0012qh8)
Episode 3

Ruby is joined by neuroscientist Ash Ranpura and Buddhist monk Gelong Thubten to talk honestly and swap experience, with insight and humour, about being happy and being human.

Ruby has done two very funny and wise shows for Radio 4, combining stand up with a conversation about mental health. Now she’s back with her friends Ash and Thubten for four engaging, entertaining, informative and intimate late night conversations about how the mind works, happiness, compassion, self-compassion and how to be human (there's no manual!).

The rollercoaster of the last two years has created soaring stress levels, confronted us with the big realities, including uncertainty and loneliness, redefined our relationship with technology and shown us the value of compassion.

Over four weeks, Ruby, Ash and Thubten discuss all of the above, what they mean for the mind and for us as humans and what their coping strategies have been.

They're all experts in their field. Ruby has a masters in Mindfulness-based Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and a glittering comedy career, Thubten has taught mindfulness all over the world from Google to the UN, and Ash is a neuroscientist and clinical neurologist.

Host: Ruby Wax
Guests: Ash Ranpura and Gelong Thubten
Producer: Liz Anstee

A CPL production for BBC Radio 4


WED 23:45 Sophie Willan's Guide to Normality (b09wt190)
Series 1

Get a Job

Break out comedy star Sophie Willan is coming to Radio 4 with an exciting new stand-up series looking at what it is to be 'normal'. Sophie grew up in and out of the Care System and had an unconventional childhood. In her debut series she will get to grips with - and often challenge - our perception of 'the perfect normal life', shining a light on the reality of the British experience.

In episode two, Sophie looks at jobs and how 'normal' it is to have one.

Sophie Willan's Guide to Normality was produced by Suzy Grant for BBC Studios.



THURSDAY 30 DECEMBER 2021

THU 00:00 Midnight News (m0012qhb)
The latest news and weather forecast from BBC Radio 4.


THU 00:15 Paul Sinha's General Knowledge (m000ydm5)
Series 3

Episode 3

Paul Sinha is an award-winning comedian, a former British Quiz Champion and also, according to the Radio Times, the UK's "funniest fund of forgotten facts". He returns to Radio 4 with a third series of his General Knowledge, recounting the amazing true stories that lie behind fascinating nuggets of information.

This episode looks at the history of the UK's New Towns, from the son of Stevenage who was one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people, to the Redditch-born superstar who has more Twitter followers than anyone else in Britain. Akso, Paul proves empirically that Runcorn is at least three times more interesting than you thought.

Written and performed by Paul Sinha
Additional material by Oliver Levy
Recording engineered by Kate Barker and Mike Smith
Produced by Ed Morrish

A Lead Mojo/Somethin' Else co-production for BBC Radio 4


THU 00:48 Shipping Forecast (m0012qhd)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


THU 01:00 Selection of BBC World Service Programmes (m0012qhg)
BBC Radio 4 presents a selection of news and current affairs, arts and science programmes from the BBC World Service.


THU 05:33 Shipping Forecast (m0012qhj)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


THU 05:43 Prayer for the Day (m0012qhn)
A spiritual comment and prayer to begin the day with Rev Azariah France-Williams, priest, author and broadcaster.

Good Morning, today is the birthday of the American basketball player LeBron James. He is arguably the greatest basketball player of all time. He has won countless titles, and international acclaim and. he is the first active NBA player to earn over a billion dollars.

His start in life did not point to where he is today. His mother Gloria was only 16 when he was born, and his father was incarcerated. His grandmother and great grandmother helped provide for him but both died whilst he was only a young child, leaving Gloria looking after him and his two brothers, without a stable home.

One year he missed more school than he attended. A local family, the Walkers, persuaded Gloria to let them provide a home for LeBron during the week, and get him to school and be his family, whilst she found settled employment. He was nine years old. The Dad of the family was Frank Walker a local basketball coach who quickly had LeBron join the team, and start coaching the 8 year olds to sharpen his game.

Twenty-seven years on and amongst the success and the fame LeBron James never forgets his past. He’s established a foundation to support the children of lone parents to take a shot at creating home, where there was none before. He recognises the support he’s had along the way to get him to the place he’s in today and that reflection has inspired an active gratefulness.

Father God open our eyes to those who are falling through the cracks.

Step in and save them from disappearing altogether. Show us what you would have us do to encourage and support them the best we can to see them truly flourish.

Amen


THU 05:45 Farming Today (m0012qhq)
Curling

Scottish curlers have made headlines around the world again last month, with both the men's and women's teams winning gold medals at the European Championships - both of them with members of farming families in the line-up.
And that's no new phenomenon, because the link between Scottish farmers and the game of curling stretches back over the centuries and farmers have dominated the highest echelons of the sport for generations.
But as Nancy Nicolson meets some recent stars of the game she discovers times are changing and the imperative of winning international medals has made it almost impossible to be both a professional curler and a professional farmer.


THU 05:58 Tweet of the Day (b03k5c63)
Snow Bunting

Tweet of the Day is a series of fascinating stories about our British birds inspired by their calls and songs.

David Attenborough presents the snow bunting. The ornithologist and author, Desmond Nethersole-Thompson, described the snow bunting as 'possibly the most romantic and elusive bird in the British Isles'. When you disturb a flock of what seem to be brownish birds, they explode into a blizzard of white-winged buntings, calling softly as they swirl around the winter strandline.


THU 06:00 Today (m0012s92)
Former Chief of Defence Staff General Sir Nick Carter guest-edits the Today programme.

Sir Nick's programme focuses on Afghanistan, looks at what it means to leave a big job, and he takes part in a blind whisky tasting.


THU 09:00 In Our Time (m0012s94)
Fritz Lang

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the Austrian-born film director Fritz Lang (1890-1976), who was one of the most celebrated film-makers of the 20th century. He worked first in Weimar Germany, creating a range of films including the startling and subversive Mabuse the Gambler and the iconic but ruinously expensive Metropolis before arguably his masterpiece, M, with both the police and the underworld hunting for a child killer in Berlin, his first film with sound. The rise of the Nazis prompted Lang's move to Hollywood where he developed some of his Weimar themes in memorable and disturbing films such as Fury and The Big Heat.

With

Stella Bruzzi
Professor of Film and Dean of Arts and Humanities at University College London

Joe McElhaney
Professor of Film Studies at Hunter College, City University of New York

And

Iris Luppa
Senior Lecturer in Film Studies in the Division of Film and Media at London South Bank University

Producer: Simon Tillotson


THU 09:45 Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton (m0012s96)
William's Midnight Adventure

The starchy spinster next door has made continual complaints about William, his whistling, his general scruffiness. She confiscates all of William’s things that have gradually come over the fence into her garden. Tennis balls. Bows and arrows. Even William’s beloved dog Jumble’s collar.

William takes a surprising, if rather exciting, revenge. But the embroidery of her imagination is no match for our hero's.

Written by Richmal Crompton

Read by Martin Jarvis
A Jarvis & Ayres production for BBC Radio 4


THU 10:00 Woman's Hour (m0012s98)
Women's voices and women's lives - topical conversations to inform, challenge and inspire.


THU 11:00 Crossing Continents (m0012s9b)
Peru's left behind children

Peru has been battered by Covid-19. It has the highest known death toll in the world per capita. But behind the figures there’s another hidden pandemic. By the end of April 2021 around 93,000 children had lost a father, mother, grand-parent, or other primary caregiver to the virus - that’s one in every hundred children. For Crossing Continents, Jane Chambers travels to Lima to meet the families struggling to cope. The immediate urgency of the health crisis is masking a much deeper malaise; that of a generation of children mentally and physically scarred by loss and poverty.

Reported and produced by Jane Chambers.
Editor, Bridget Harney

(Image: Jhoana Olinda Antón Silva and her children in their home at the shrine they built for their father who died of Covid-19. Credit: Paola Ugaz)


THU 11:30 Faith in Music (m0012s9d)
Ralph Vaughan Williams

Scottish, Catholic composer Sir James MacMillan considers the faith lives of three very different composers. In this programme, he explores Vaughan Williams’ complex faith life as someone who lived through both World Wars and witnessed close up great suffering and destruction.

Over the centuries, composers have created musical masterpieces that many listeners have come to regard as spiritual touchstones. For example, Mozart’s Requiem, Mahler’s 2nd Symphony, Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis. But what did these composers actually believe about God, faith, judgement, an afterlife and redemption? And do we need to share these beliefs in any way in order to have a spiritual experience as listeners to their music? Answers to these questions are complex, fascinating and challenging.

The son of a Gloucestershire vicar, Vaughan Williams was once described as a Christian Agnostic. He spent the First World War in the Ambulance Corps, picking up bits of bodies blown apart in the trenches. During the Second World War, he cleaned public lavatories and became a rag-and-bone man. Much of his music is a cry of horror at the human condition and yet he was constantly drawn back to the Anglican liturgy, Latin Mass, Bible, Pilgrim's Progress and old hymn tunes.

James talks with scholars and musicologists Em Marshall-Luck, Stephen Johnson and conductor Sir Andrew Davis about Vaughan Williams’ religious upbringing and the experiences of his life which were reflected in his attitude towards faith and religion.

Produced by Rosie Boulton
A Must Try Softer production for BBC Radio 4

Vaughan Williams Music included in this programme:

Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis

Come Down O Love Divine

1st Movement of 6th Symphony

Love Bade Me Welcome from Five Mystical Songs

Valiant for Truth

Last Movement of 9th Symphony


THU 12:00 News Summary (m0012s9g)
National and international news from BBC Radio 4


THU 12:04 The Princess Bride (m0012s9j)
Bitesize Backstories: The Henchman

“This is my favourite book in all the world, though I have never read it”. When Goldman discovers The Princess Bride by S Morgenstern is not the swashbuckling fantasy his father read him as a child, but is in fact a patchy and extensive historical satire, he sets out to create the “Good Parts” version…

A tale of true love and high adventure featuring a fighting giant that loves to rhyme, a swordsman on the ultimate quest for revenge, a pirate in love with a princess, a princess in love with a farm boy and a prince in love with war.

First a novel, then a film, now an audio experience:

The Best Bits of the Good Parts Version by Stephen Keyworth.

A two-part dramatisation of swashbuckling adventure plus five bitesize backstories which can be enjoyed as stand-alone stories or to enhance your experience of the drama.

Bitesize Backstories: The Henchman

Fezzik was a simple, happy giant...until his parents taught him to fight.

The story of how a giant whose favourite sport was making rhymes became the henchman to a master villain.

Reader: Grant O’Rourke
Producer: Kirsty Williams

Sound recording: Iain McKinna
Editing: Joanne Willott


THU 12:18 You and Yours (m0012s9l)
News and discussion of consumer affairs


THU 12:57 Weather (m0012s9n)
The latest weather forecast


THU 13:00 World at One (m0012s9q)
Forty-five minutes of news, analysis and comment, with Jonny Dymond.


THU 13:45 Call to Kabul (m0012smy)
Escape from the Taliban

In programme four we join Naqeeb and Paul in the UK as they plan how to help get Hijrat and his family to safety. Gathering intelligence from past and current members of the armed forces helps them decide which border is safest to aim for and how to navigate the Taliban checkpoints on the way.

Hijrat, his wife Aziza and their three children have been moving between safe houses - hours after leaving their latest address the Taliban are hard on their trail. They need to get out of Afghanistan right now.

A friend offers to drive them to the border and they detail how they will hide in the boot of the car at key points and the clothes they will use for disguise once they're there. As they set off they speak of their fear and confusion and also the distress of their children, who are too young to properly understand what's happening and where they're going.

Exposure on the BBC’s Any Answers programme in August was critical in saving Naqeeb’s life. The transmission of pleas made by the former officer reached MPs, Government ministers and others able to assist. Eight years earlier the interpreter, Naqeeb, had helped to save eight soldiers from an attack by a suicide bomber. Now those same soldiers are happy to help Hijrat as he starts this difficult and dangerous journey.

Produced by Sue Mitchell
Presented by Anita Anand


THU 14:00 The Archers (m0012qh0)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Wednesday]


THU 14:15 Drama (m0012s9v)
What’s Love Got to Do With it?

Tina and Turner are the perfect couple. Like everyone else, they use an app called Q to manage their love and sex life. Via their smart watches, Q can track everything from their body temperature to their work diary, using extensive data and ever-responsive algorithms to understand their mood, desires and turn offs, and cue their partner to act accordingly.

But when Tina and Turner decide to ‘go analogue’ and delete Q, it’s far from plain sailing. Can they find happiness without the app?

A near-future comedy about data and dating.

Developed through the Wellcome Trust Experimental stories scheme.

Tina ..... Georgie Fuller
Turner ..... Edward Easton
The Narrator ..... Gwyneth Keyworth
Georgie ..... Elinor Coleman
Rob ..... Ian Dunnett Jnr
The Groom ..... Justice Ritchie

With special thanks to Dr Ricky Nathvani and Maxine Mackintosh.

Written by Tom Wainwright

Directed by Anne Isger

Sound Design by Pete Ringrose


THU 15:00 Open Country (m0012s9x)
Reflections and Connections

A wildlife cameraman, a sea swimmer, a poet and a professional tree climber reflect on their relationship with their local landscape; sea, loch, rocky beach and woodland on the cusp of a new year. From a new understanding of home to the discovery of one’s real self, their reflections are inspiring, insightful and powerful.
Produced by Sarah Blunt for BBC Audio in Bristol.


THU 15:27 Radio 4 Appeal (m0012rgv)
[Repeat of broadcast at 07:54 on Sunday]


THU 15:30 Open Book (m0012rj3)
[Repeat of broadcast at 16:00 on Sunday]


THU 16:00 Think with Pinker (m0012s9z)
The Climate Game

How flaws in the way we think make it harder to tackle climate change. In his guide to thinking better, Professor Steven Pinker examines how global warming is also a problem in the psychology of judgement and decision making.

To search for solutions, he’s joined by Bill Gates, co-founder of Microsoft and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and author of ‘How to Avoid a Climate Disaster’ and by Professor Hannah Fry, senior lecturer at University College London’s Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, co-presenter of Rutherford and Fry on Radio 4 and author of ‘Hello World: How to be human in the age of the machine.’

What can the game rock, paper scissors teach us about preventing a climate catastrophe?

Producer: Imogen Walford
Editor: Emma Rippon

Think with Pinker is produced in partnership with The Open University.


THU 16:30 BBC Inside Science (m0012sb1)
A new space age?

Dr Kevin Fong convenes a panel of astronautical minds to discuss the next decade or two of space exploration.

2021 was an eventful year in space. Captain James Kirk a.k.a William Shatner popped into space for real for a couple of minutes, transported by space company Blue Origin's tourist rocket New Shepard. Elon Musk's Space X ferried more astronauts and supplies between Earth and the International Space Station, using its revolutionary resuable launchers and Dragon spacecraft. On Mars, the latest NASA robot rover landed and released an autonomous helicopter - the first aircraft to fly on another planet.

2022 promises even more. Most significantly NASA plans to launch the first mission of its Artemis programme. This will be an uncrewed flight of its new deep space vehicle Orion to the Moon, propelled off the Earth by its new giant rocket, the Space Launch System. Artemis is the American space agency's project to return astronauts to the lunar surface and later establish moon bases. China has a similar ambition.

Are we at the beginning of a new space age and if so, how have we got here? When will we see boots on the Moon again? Could we even see the first people on Mars by the end of this decade? Even in cautious NASA, some are optimistic about this.

Kevin's three guests are:

Dr Mike Barratt, one of NASA's most senior astronauts and a medical doctor, based at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas
Dr Anita Sengupta, Research Associate Professor in Astronautical Engineering at the University of Southern California
Oliver Morton, Briefings editor at The Economist and the author of 'Mapping Mars' and 'The Moon'

Producer: Andrew Luck-Baker

BBC Inside Science is made in association with the Open University


THU 17:00 PM (m0012sb3)
Afternoon news and current affairs programme, reporting on breaking stories and summing up the day's headlines.


THU 18:00 Six O'Clock News (m0012sb5)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4.


THU 18:15 Sandi Toksvig's Hygge (m0012sb7)
Series 2

Lyse Doucet

Joining Sandi Toksvig in her cosy log cabin today is the BBC's Chief International Correspondent Lyse Doucet. Over a drink they talk about the right way to start the day, the gardens of Kabul, love of water and the soothing magic of fragrance.

Starring... Sandi Toksvig
Guest...Lyse Doucet
Additional material... Tasha Dhanraj and Rajiv Karia
Producer...Julia McKenzie
Production coordinator...Katie Baum
A BBC Studios Production


THU 18:30 Fags, Mags and Bags (m000k2bh)
Series 9

Episode 1

More shop based shenanigans and over the counter philosophy, courtesy of Ramesh Mahju and his trusty sidekick Dave.

Set in a Scots-Asian corner and written by and starring Donald Mcleary and Sanjeev Kohli, the award winning Fags, Mags & Bags returns for a 9th series with all the regular characters and some guest appearances along the way.

In this episode, Ramesh is delighted that the new Lenzie House of Wax is proving a hit as stock has been flying off the shelves. But not everyone is happy with the number of visitors to the town.

Join the staff of Fags, Mags and Bags in their tireless quest to bring nice-price custard creams and cans of coke with Arabic writing on them to an ungrateful nation. Ramesh Mahju has built it up over the course of over 30 years and is a firmly entrenched, friendly presence in the local area. He is joined by his shop sidekick Dave.

Then of course there are Ramesh’s sons Sanjay and Alok, both surly and not particularly keen on the old school approach to shopkeeping, but natural successors to the business. Ramesh is keen to pass all his worldly wisdom onto them - whether they like it or not!

Cast:
Ramesh: Sanjeev Kohli
Dave: Donald Mcleary
Sanjay: Omar Raza
Alok: Susheel Kumar
Thin Elizabeth: Maureen Carr
Hilly: Kate Brailsford
Bishop Briggs: Michael Redmond
Bra Jeff: Steven McNicol
Angusina Comer: Gavin Mitchell

Producer: Gus Beattie for Gusman Productions
A Comedy Unit production for BBC Radio 4


THU 19:00 The Archers (m0012sb9)
Writer, Keri Davies
Director, Julie Beckett
Editor, Jeremy Howe

Ruth Archer ….. Felicity Finch
Ben Archer ….. Ben Norris
Jennifer Aldridge ….. Angela Piper
Harrison Burns ….. James Cartwright
Susan Carter ….. Charlotte Martin
Alice Carter ….. Hollie Chapman
Chris Carter ….. Wilf Scolding
Ruairi Donovan ….. Arthur Hughes
Usha Franks ….. Souad Faress
Alan Franks ….. John Telfer
Adam Macy ….. Andrew Wincott
Kirsty Miller ….. Annabelle Dowler
Lynda Snell MBE ….. Carole Boyd
Mike Tucker ….. Terry Molloy
Beth Casey….. Rebecca Fuller
Stella ….. Lucy Speed


THU 19:15 This Cultural Life (m0010wp3)
Paul McCartney

Paul McCartney talks to John Wilson about his key influences and inspirations. In a candid conversation, in which he discusses his relationship with John Lennon, the break-up of The Beatles and his six decade career, he reveals some of his most formative artistic experiences and his creative process.

Producer: Edwina Pitman


THU 20:00 The Briefing Room (m000xmm0)
Who Do We Think We Are?

Four recent by-elections in the UK - Airdrie and Schotts, Hartlepool, Amersham and Chesham, and Batley and Spen - tell us four different stories about who we are and what determines who we vote for.

So how well do we know who we are and how has that ‘who’ changed over the last thirty years?

Joining David Aaronovitch in the Briefing Room are:

James Kanagasoorium, CEO of Stack Data Strategy
Paula Surridge, political sociologist from the University of Bristol
Rosie Campbell, Professor of Politics at King's College, London
Rob Ford, Professor of Political Science at the University of Manchester

Producers: John Murphy, Kirsteen Knight and Ben Carter
Editor: Jasper Corbett
Sound Mix: Graham Puddifoot

Image: Liverpool by night Credit: Jenna Goodwin / EyeEm / Getty


THU 20:30 Lights Out (m000zcfq)
Series 4

Fallout

Documentary adventures that encourage you to take a closer listen.

The image of the atomic mushroom cloud is powerfully symbolic, yet the grainy black and white footage that we're familiar with can create a sense of something historical, abstract and almost cinematic.

The legacy of the UK's atmospheric nuclear weapons tests in Australia and the South Pacific is still, to some degree, shrouded in mystery. But for veterans and their offspring, as well as often forgotten islanders, these events are something very present that they carry with them everyday in an ongoing fight for acknowledgement.

This documentary brings together these interconnected, intergenerational testimonies and considers the possible physical, psychological and cultural fallout that has occurred in the years following Operation Grapple on Kiritimati (then Christmas Island) and the Minor Trials in Maralinga.

With contributions from Tekaobo Wainwright, John and Laura Morris, Steve Purse, Philomena Lawrence and Stacy & Rose Clark.

Producer: Hannah Dean
Consultant: Becky Alexsis-Martin. and additional research from Susie Boniface
A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4

(photo credit: Eric Meyer)


THU 21:00 BBC Inside Science (m0012sb1)
[Repeat of broadcast at 16:30 today]


THU 21:30 In Our Time (m0012s94)
[Repeat of broadcast at 09:00 today]


THU 22:00 The World Tonight (m0012sbg)
In depth reporting, intelligent analysis and breaking news from a global perspective


THU 22:45 Deborah Frances-White Introduces... (m000tnrh)
Episode 4

Deborah Frances-White is a comedian and writer best known for The Guilty Feminist podcast. She has also hosted many storytelling events and, for this special broadcast series, she gave everyone the prompt – The Devil You Know.

Steve Ali’s story takes us back to his childhood in Aleppo to explore family legends and memories. He is a Syrian writer and broadcaster living in London. He was a regular on all four seasons of the BBC podcast GrownUpLand and has appeared on Global Pillage and The Guilty Feminist as well as Amnesty International’s Secret Policeman’s Tour shows. He has written for The Sunday Times Magazine, GQ Magazine and The Evening Standard and is co-founder of The Refugee Media Centre. He is a silversmith and has his own jewellery company. Steve is currently developing a one man show called The Alcohol of the Soul.

Deborah Frances-White is a comedian and writer. The Guilty Feminist podcast has had 85 million downloads and she has appeared at The Royal Albert Hall, The Sydney Opera House and The London Palladium. Her BBC Radio 4 show Deborah Frances-White Rolls the Dice won The Writers’ Guild Award for Best Radio Comedy. Her award winning independent film Say My Name premiered in 2019 at The Leicester Square Odeon. Deborah’s book The Guilty Feminist was a Sunday Times Bestseller. She is an Amnesty International Ambassador and Artistic Director of the Secret Policeman legacy brand.

Written and Read by Steve Ali
Producer: Deborah Frances-White
Executive Producer: Caroline Raphael
Sound: Lucinda Mason Brown
Production Co-ordinator: Sarah Wright
A Pier production for BBC Radio 4


THU 23:00 John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme (m000wlnr)
Series 9

Episode 5

The ninth series of John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme is very different to the previous eight. It's still written by John Finnemore, "one of our best sketch writers", (The Observer), and performed by him with "a great supporting cast of Margaret Cabourn-Smith, Simon Kane, Lawry Lewin and Carrie Quinlan" (The Telegraph), and there are still sketches and songs. But, with no live studio audience this year, John has taken the opportunity to try something completely new

Every episode in this series of Souvenir Programme is made up of scenes from one person's life, played in reverse order. There's no narrative to the episode; it's still a sketch show, not a sitcom... but the sketches in each episode all happened to one person, played by one member of the cast, over the course of their lifetime.

This week concerns Newt, following his life backwards from a funeral in 1990 to an eventful Christmas dinner in 1898.

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme started in 2011 and quickly established itself as "One of the most consistently funny sketch shows for quite some time" (The Guardian), and "One of the funniest and most inventive new radio comedy shows of recent years" (The Daily Mail).

Written by ... John Finnemore
Newt ... John Finnemore
Ensemble ... Lawry Lewin
Ensemble ... Margaret Cabourn-Smith
Ensemble ... Simon Kane
Ensemble ... Carrie Quinlan

Original music composed by .... Susannah Pearse
Original music arranged by ... Susannah Pearse and Tim Sutton
Recorded and edited by ... Rich Evans at Syncbox Post
Production coordinator ... Beverly Tagg
Producer ... Ed Morrish

A BBC Studios Production


THU 23:30 Great Lives (m0012s85)
[Repeat of broadcast at 16:30 on Tuesday]



FRIDAY 31 DECEMBER 2021

FRI 00:00 Midnight News (m0012sbj)
The latest news and weather forecast from BBC Radio 4.


FRI 00:15 Paul Sinha's General Knowledge (m000ylfx)
Series 3

Episode 4

Paul Sinha is an award-winning comedian, a former British Quiz Champion and also, according to the Radio Times, the UK's "funniest fund of forgotten facts". He returns to Radio 4 with a third series of his General Knowledge, recounting the amazing true stories that lie behind fascinating nuggets of information.

This episode is a race against the clock for Paul to present the virtual audience with an A-Z of facts. He gives them a letter, they give him a word, and he either gives them a fact or he just reads out the script he prepared for another word. Starting with A for Aubergine and Alligator, how far can he get before the twenty-eight minutes are up?

Written and performed by Paul Sinha
Additional material by Oliver Levy
Recording engineered by Kate Barker and Mike Smith
Produced by Ed Morrish

A Lead Mojo/Somethin' Else co-production for BBC Radio 4


FRI 00:48 Shipping Forecast (m0012sbl)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


FRI 01:00 Selection of BBC World Service Programmes (m0012sbn)
BBC Radio 4 presents a selection of news and current affairs, arts and science programmes from the BBC World Service.


FRI 05:33 Shipping Forecast (m0012sbq)
The latest weather reports and forecasts for UK shipping.


FRI 05:43 Prayer for the Day (m0012sbv)
A spiritual comment and prayer to begin the day with Rev Azariah France-Williams, priest, author and broadcaster.

Good morning.

Outside the new Crystal Palace and Park in London on this day in 1853 a fascinating dinner party took place. The diners were high society scientists and men of letters. Crowds came from far and wide to witness the spectacle. You might be wondering why on earth people would be so interested in watching men eat. Well, did I mention the meal was served inside a dinosaur?

In the lead up to the opening of the new Crystal Palace, the world’s first ever giant replica dinosaurs were constructed by the sculptor Benjamin Waterhouse Hawkins and they were placed around the park. It was an iguanodon replica that was chosen to host the fancy meal . The people of the present sat within a predator of the past.

The main guest of honour was Richard Owen, he went on to raise a toast to Gideon Mantell who had died the year previously. the two men had been bitter rivals with conflicting visions of the field of palaeontology. It is surmised that the toast being raised by Owen was him making his peace with the past, whilst sitting in a piece of the past. On this New Year’s Eve I wonder who we can toast? Who can we celebrate? Who or what do we need to make peace with?

Faithful God, the same yesterday today and forever, before we try and hurtle forward into this New Year help us to pause and spend a moment sitting in the past - acknowledging the relationships in need of repair, the events of the last year that have surprised, shocked, or saddened us, and the grieving and the celebrating to be done. We lift it all to you – the God of the past, present and the future.

Amen.


FRI 05:45 Farming Today (m0012sbx)
Vital Seeds

Extensive consolidation of the seed industry in the past 70 years has resulted in the closure of most independent seed merchants. It has also led to the loss of regionally adapted plant varieties that suit local soils and conditions in favour of standardised hybridised varieties typically bred for high yields. The UN Food and Agricultural Organisation estimates that the loss of genetic diversity in plants globally stands at 75% along with the disappearance of 93% of our unique seed varieties in the past 100 years.

A parallel issue is that as these patented, hybridised seeds dominate the market, it removes the option for growers to save seed from crops to sow the next year as has been the tradition for thousands of years, since humans started farming. This is because seeds produced by a hybrid plant won't 'grow true' - that is, they will not have the same genetic make up as the parent plant so will not produce the same quality of crop. Vital Seeds in Devon is part of a Seed Sovereignty movement to change this direction of travel, growing rare varieties of vegetables and flowers that are open-pollinated meaning they will grow true, and teaching people how to save seed. Rachel Lovell joined them on a windy winter's day to find out more about what they are doing, and why they are so devoted to saving traditional seeds.


FRI 05:58 Tweet of the Day (m0001mt4)
Monty Don's Fieldfare Season

For writer, gardener and TV presenter Monty Don, the changing seasons herald different sounds and atmospheres in the garden. In autumn as the leaves begin to fall, the arrival of flocks of fieldfares from the north of Europe are as much a part of the garden in winter as are summer migrants during the long days of June. A mixture of truculence and shyness, everything about fieldfares is harsh or jerky, but for Monty he likes them.

Producer Andrew Dawes


FRI 06:00 Today (m0012svy)
Founder of the Jane Goodall Institute and UN Messenger of Peace Dr Jane Goodall guest-edits Today. Her programme features reporting from Tanzania where she first started her work in the 1960s. Jane also commissions the BBC's Climate Editor Justin Rowlatt to look at the link between poverty and climate change.


FRI 09:00 Desert Island Discs (m0012rhj)
[Repeat of broadcast at 11:00 on Sunday]


FRI 09:45 Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton (m0012sy2)
William Goes Shopping

William Brown, in the midst of doin' good and ritin' wrongs in the high street, is chased by an irate shopkeeper. Forced to hide, he becomes trapped in an outfitter's window. Nothing for it but to pretend to be a tailor's dummy.

Passers-by stop and look in. 'That one's gotter nugly face,' says a little girl. 'Well, they can't 'elp their faces,' says her mother. Never mind – this afternoon he has been taught by an old man how to make a whistle! A triumphant end to the series of five stories.

Written by Richmal Crompton

Read by Martin Jarvis.
A Jarvis & Ayres production for BBC Radio 4


FRI 10:00 Woman's Hour (m0012sw2)
Women's voices and women's lives - topical conversations to inform, challenge and inspire.


FRI 11:00 Science Stories (m0001r8x)
Series 8

Kepler's Snowflakes

Philip Ball reveals the tale of a small booklet 'On The Six-Cornered Snowflake", written by Johannes Kepler as a New Year's gift. The C17th astronomer wished to explain the intricate and symmetrical shape of winter's tiny stars of snow. His insightful speculations about minerals and geometry was the beginning of the modern understanding of crystals.


FRI 11:30 Common Ground (m0012sw4)
Wolfgang Hessenthaler runs a hot food stall at a Birmingham market with his endlessly patient assistant Vijay. Not a day goes by without a customer asking for some traditional German sausage - but Wolfgang proudly serves Vegan food. His Lentil and Pine Nut Bake is a speciality so ,for him, those sorts of questions are the worst of the wurst.

He sends those customers – the ones without morals, or taste buds, as he sees it - to rival stallholder Janice whose hot dogs are as moreish as their ingredients are mysterious. She also has a non-hot dog, the yappy Barney, who probably shouldn’t be around a food stall, especially one which is being visited by the council food safety inspector today.

In this first episode, Wolfgang is dealing with another health and safety crisis on the domestic front, where his flatmate Mita, who is also Vijay’s party-hard sister, has accidentally unleashed a plague of rodents into their home. Luckily Wolf has some novel ideas for getting rid of them.

At the market, Wolf is delighted with new patrons Jolyon and Francis, who seem to be a better class of customer than his usual “riff-raff”, but Vijay finds their sudden taste for nettle salad rather surprising. Could they have another motive?

Soon the food safety inspector’s keen eye for transgressions falls on Wolf and Vijay’s stall too. Who has tipped off the council? Henning thinks it must be Janice. But Vijay has other ideas.

Starring:
Henning Wehn
Antonio Akeel
Anna Crilly
Manjinder Virk
William Andrews
Pete Sinclair

Written by: Pete Sinclair
Additional Material: Henning Wehn
Producer: Jon Rolph
Production Coordinator: Tamara Shilham
Executive Producer: Ben Walker
Sound Recordist: Jerry Peal

A Hare and Tortoise production for BBC Radio 4


FRI 12:00 News Summary (m0012sy4)
National and international news from BBC Radio 4


FRI 12:04 The Princess Bride (m0012sw8)
Bitesize Backstories: The Swordsman

“This is my favourite book in all the world, though I have never read it”. When Goldman discovers The Princess Bride by S Morgenstern is not the swashbuckling fantasy his father read him as a child, but is in fact a patchy and extensive historical satire, he sets out to create the “Good Parts” version…

A tale of true love and high adventure featuring a fighting giant that loves to rhyme, a swordsman on the ultimate quest for revenge, a pirate in love with a princess, a princess in love with a farm boy and a prince in love with war.

First a novel, then a film, now an audio experience:

The Best Bits of the Good Parts Version by Stephen Keyworth.

A two-part dramatisation of swashbuckling adventure plus five bitesize backstories which can be enjoyed as stand-alone stories or to enhance your experience of the drama.

Bitesize Backstories: The Swordsman

The story of why Inigo Montoya becomes the greatest swordsman in the world and why he uttered the infamous words: “My name is Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die.”

Reader: Grant O’Rourke
Producer: Kirsty Williams

Sound recording: Iain McKinna
Editing: Joanne Willott


FRI 12:18 You and Yours (m0012swb)
News and discussion of consumer affairs


FRI 12:57 Weather (m0012swd)
The latest weather forecast


FRI 13:00 World at One (m0012swg)
Forty-five minutes of news, analysis and comment, with Jonny Dymond.


FRI 13:45 Call to Kabul (m0012swj)
Crossing Borders

In programme five we join Naqeeb's brother, Hijrat, as he makes his way to the border: he is about to cross over from Afghanistan to Pakistan but he's doing so illegally, paying to be taken a back route to avoid any possibility that Taliban troops will spot him. We follow him as he does that and back in London Anita is waiting for news and receiving phone updates of his progress.

Exposure on the BBC’s Any Answers programme in August was critical in saving Naqeeb’s life. The transmission of pleas made by the former officer reached MPs, Government ministers and others able to assist. Eight years earlier the interpreter, Naqeeb, had helped to save eight soldiers from an attack by a suicide bomber. Now those same soldiers are helping guide Haijrat on the safest possible route out of the country.

This isn’t a unique story, it has cross-over with so many other experiences, but by telling it in such detail it highlights the terrifying reality faced by those dealing with the consequences of the allied forces withdrawal. It also brings home how bonds forged in life and death situations many years ago can lead to such powerful actions now.

Produced by Sue Mitchell
Presented by Anita Anand


FRI 14:00 The Archers (m0012sb9)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Thursday]


FRI 14:15 Limelight (m0012swl)
SteelHeads

Steelheads – Episode 1: Lady in the Water

When a young British tennis pro, Joleen Kenzie (Jessica Barden), is diagnosed with a rare terminal illness, she has herself cryogenically frozen at an experimental lab in Seattle, in the hope that one day – perhaps hundreds of years into the future - there will be a cure and she can be revived.

She wakes up to a world divided... and Joleen is now captive.

From the creators of The Cipher and Passenger List, a chilling new medical thriller inspired by true events starring Jessica Barden.

Cast:
JOLEEN – Jessica Barden
REMI – Khalid Laith
KIT – Symera Jackson
LUTHER – Bruce Lester Johnson
IZZY – Lizzie Stables
LUCINDA/ESME – Annabelle Dowler
WAYNE – Daniel Ryan
PADMA – Jennifer Armour
EARL – Kerry Shale
OSCAR/JAMAR – Jason Forbes
RICHARD – Eric Meyers
ANDREI – Andrew Byron
SUMMER – Gianna Kiehl
DRE – Earl R Perkins
SUE – Laurel Lefkow
GREG – Christopher Ragland
STOLYA – Yanina Hope

Original Theme composed by Pascal Wyse

Written and Created by Brett Neichin and John Scott Dryden
Script Editing by Mike Walker
Sound Design by Steve Bond
Sound Editor: Adam Woodhams
Assistant Producer: Eleanor Mein
Additional casting by Janet Foster
Trails by Jack Soper
Produced by Emma Hearn
Director and Executive Producer: John Scott Dryden

A Goldhawk production for BBC Radio 4


FRI 14:45 New Year Solutions (m0001t9w)
Meat

As global warming threatens the future of our society, Jo Fidgen tackles the ways in which ordinary people can make a difference.

We're often told that we could help the environment by driving less, eating less meat, or using less water.

But in the face of a challenge as significant as global warming, how big a difference can small changes really make? And what would the world look like if we took those solutions to their logical extremes?

The production of meat and animal products takes up a shocking proportion of our planet's land - from feed to farting, livestock are a huge burden on the planet. How far could ditching meat go to solving the climate crisis?

Producer: Robert Nicholson

A Whistledown production for BBC Radio 4


FRI 15:00 Gardeners' Question Time (m0012swp)
GQT at Home: New Year's Trees

Kathy Clugston hosts the horticultural programme featuring a group of gardening experts. Matthew Pottage, Christine Walkden and Bob Flowerdew answer the queries ahead of the new year.

This week, our panellists share their gardening resolutions for 2022, and suggest some ideas for a fast growing, thrifty hedge that can withstand bad weather.

Away from the questions, Matt Biggs gives us his ultimate guide to planting trees in winter, and James Wong tells us about a magical tree found both indoors and out, the Strangler Fig.

Producer - Hannah Newton
Assistant Producer - Aniya Das

A Somethin' Else production for BBC Radio 4


FRI 15:45 Short Works (m0012swr)
The Riots

An original short work for BBC Radio 4 by the Northern Irish writer Dawn Watson. As read by Aoibhéann McCann.

Dawn Watson published her debut poetry pamphlet 'The Stack of Owls is Getting Higher' in 2019. She has short stories in anthologies including 'Still Worlds Turning' and 'Belfast Stories'. Dawn has taught undergraduate Creative Writing at the Seamus Heaney Centre in Queen’s University since 2018. She is a former national tabloid sub editor and lives in Belfast.

Writer: Dawn Watson
Reader: Aoibhéann McCann
Producer: Michael Shannon

A BBC Northern Ireland production.


FRI 16:00 Last Word (m0012swt)
Matthew Bannister tells the life stories of people who have recently died, from the rich and famous to unsung but significant.


FRI 16:30 Sending Mum Abroad (m0012pl5)
Comedian and writer David Baddiel explores why some people are choosing to send their elderly relatives abroad for 24 hour dementia care.

From soaring costs to reports of staff under pressure, covid concerns and neglect in some homes, deciding where in the UK to house loved ones who need intense support poses a huge dilemma for relatives.

David Baddiel, whose father suffers with dementia, hears how some people from Britain and Europe are choosing to send their mums, dads and partners as far away as Thailand for dedicated round the clock support.

Peter Brown runs a care resort in Chiang Mai - the mountainous north of the country. His 31 dementia patients are referred to as ‘guests’ with care tailored to the individual. Meanwhile Martin Woodtli runs a nearby ‘village’ where 14 people live in Villas with round the clock personal carers. He set things up after struggling to find care for his mother in his native Switzerland.

David hears from relatives who are attracted by both the type and the cost of care in Thailand. One of them, Michael Williams from Bristol, talks about the pain he felt leaving his mum to be cared for thousands of miles away for the first time. Meanwhile, another relative reveals how he’s seriously considering joining his wife to live in one of the villas she's just moved into in the Chiang Mai care ‘village’.

At the moment, there’s a quiet revolution around catering for foreign nationals with dementia in Thailand, but its not the only place. It’s also happening in Mexico, where people have begun moving their loved ones because they couldn’t find suitable or affordable care in the United States.

David asks if the phenomenon will catch on, and whether more people will be attracted in the long term to the option of sending mum or dad to live out their days abroad.

A Made in Manchester production for BBC Radio 4.


FRI 17:00 PM (m0012sww)
Afternoon news and current affairs programme, reporting on breaking stories and summing up the day's headlines.


FRI 18:00 Six O'Clock News (m0012sx0)
The latest national and international news from BBC Radio 4.


FRI 18:15 Sandi Toksvig's Hygge (m0012sx2)
Series 2

David Blunkett

Joining Sandi Toksvig in her cosy log cabin today is former Home Secretary and Sheffield MP David Blunkett. Over a glass of burgundy they explore the concept of Hygge and chat about guide dogs behaving badly, the Peak District, tolerance of different opinions, mishaps in braille and the guilty pleasure of an open fire.

Starring... Sandi Toksvig
Guest...David Blunkett
Additional material...Rajiv Karia and Tasha Dhanraj
Producer...Julia McKenzie
Production coordinator...Katie Baum
A BBC Studios Production


FRI 18:30 The News Quiz (m0012sx4)
Series 107

Best of 2021

Andy Zaltzman raids the 2021 archive to remember amongst other things, a man in a horned helmet running around the Capitol Building, the leader of the opposition not being allowed into a pub and Britain's favourite alpaca.

Producer: Richard Morris
Production co-ordinator: Katie Baum

A BBC Studios Production


FRI 19:00 Lemn Sissay's Poetry Rebels (m0012sx7)
The Internet Poets

Spoken word poets have revolutionised poetry since the 1960s, by making direct connections with new audiences. Now the internet has opened up a new route for poets to connect with the crowd. But has social media changed poetry?

Lemn Sissay discovers how poets are taking things into their own hands and posting their work online. Hollie McNish recalls how Reddit took her career to a whole new level, Michael Schmidt asks if social media is obscuring the best work, while Simon Armitage looks ahead to the next generation of rebel poets.

Written and presented by Lemn Sissay
Sound design by Charlie Brandon-King
Produced by Richard Lea and Joe Hallam

A Bafflegab production for BBC Radio 4


FRI 19:15 Screenshot (m0012sx9)
New Year's Eve on screen

Ellen E Jones and Mark Kermode explore New Year’s Eve on film and TV, peering into the dark and the dawn either side of the stroke of midnight.

Mark looks back at director Kathryn Bigelow’s controversial 1995 film Strange Days, a dark tech-thriller set on New Year’s Eve 1999, and coursing with millennial anxieties. He revisits an interview with Bigelow recorded on the film’s release, and speaks to Strange Days star Ralph Fiennes about how it resonates over 25 years on. 

And on a lighter note, Ellen investigates New Year's Eve tropes on screen, from The Poseidon Adventure to When Harry Met Sally. She’s joined by comedian Rose Matafeo, creator of hit BBC series Starstruck, and director Reggie Yates, whose recent movie Pirates is also set on Millennium Eve.

Screenshot is Radio 4’s guide through the ever-expanding universe of the moving image. Every episode, Ellen E Jones and Mark Kermode journey through the main streets and back roads connecting film, television and streaming over the last hundred years.

Producer: Jane Long
A Prospect Street production for BBC Radio 4


FRI 20:00 Correspondents' Look Ahead (m0012sxc)
Looking Ahead to 2022

Lyse Doucet asks some of the BBC's top journalists to gaze into their crystal balls and predict what 2022 might have in store. This time last year we were boldly asking what a post-Covid world might look like. Little did we know that 12 months later, world leaders would be trying to deal with the chaos caused by a highly transmissable variant.

Is 2022 the year the whole world gets vaccinated? How will the midterm elections play out in the United States? Can Boris Johnson restore his reputation after a torrid 2021? What impact will Germany's new chancellor Olaf Scholz have? And what fate awaits the people of Afghanistan?

So many big questions, but luckily we have some of the BBC's best minds on hand to provide plenty of answers.

Presenter: Lyse Doucet
Panel: Faisal Islam, Gabriel Gatehouse, Katya Adler, Laura Trevelyan and Nick Eardley
Producer: Ben Carter
Research: Lizzie Frisby
Production Co-ordinator: Sabine Schereck
Editor: Hugh Levinson


FRI 20:50 A Point of View (m0012sxf)
On lost souls... and mobile phones

Adam Gopnik on why a visit to get his phone repaired resulted in an unlikely revelation.

Watching those waiting alongside him, Adam comes to the realisation that we have poured ourselves so completely into our phones that the devices, paradoxically, are the one place where we can picture ourselves as selves.

They have become the equivalent of the confession booths of old, or the diary in the 18th century.

"We all need some box to hold our fears and desires as the winds of the world threaten to blow us away," he concludes.

Producer: Adele Armstrong


FRI 21:00 Loose Ends (m0012sxh)
Loose Ends Lounge: Lainey Wilson, Lake Street Dive, Angelique Kidjo, Allison Russell, Self Esteem, Yola, Lava La Rue and more...

Clive Anderson with the final programme showcasing some of the best music performances on Loose Ends this year, including Lainey Wilson, Angelique Kidjo, Self Esteem, Lava La Rue, Lake Street Dive and Allison Russell.


FRI 22:00 The World Tonight (m0012sxk)
In depth reporting, intelligent analysis and breaking news from a global perspective


FRI 22:45 Deborah Frances-White Introduces... (m000tp8s)
Episode 5

Deborah Frances-White is a comedian and writer best known for The Guilty Feminist podcast. She has also hosted many storytelling events and, for this special broadcast series, she gave everyone the prompt – The Devil You Know.

In Jessica Fostekew’s story, she shares her memories of a naughty child from her school days.

Jessica is a comedian whose last show Hench was nominated for the 2019 Edinburgh Comedy Award. Her television appearances include Live at The Apollo, QI and Hypothetical. She has her own podcast The Hoovering Podcast, has been a co-host on The Guilty Feminist and she regularly appears on BBC Radio 4 panel shows. As an actor, her work includes Cuckoo (BBC/Netflix), Out of Her Mind and Motherland (BBC2), and the BAFTA multiple-award winning BBC Drama Three Girls.

Deborah Frances-White is a comedian and writer. The Guilty Feminist podcast has had 85 million downloads and she has appeared at The Royal Albert Hall, The Sydney Opera House and The London Palladium. Her BBC Radio 4 show Deborah Frances-White Rolls the Dice won The Writers’ Guild Award for Best Radio Comedy. Her award winning independent film Say My Name premiered in 2019 at The Leicester Square Odeon. Deborah’s book The Guilty Feminist was a Sunday Times Bestseller. She is an Amnesty International Ambassador and Artistic Director of the Secret Policeman legacy brand.

Written and Read by Jessica Fostekew
Producer: Deborah Frances-White
Executive Producer: Caroline Raphael
Sound: Lucinda Mason Brown
Production Co-ordinator: Sarah Wright
A Pier production for BBC Radio 4


FRI 23:00 John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme (m000wsyb)
Series 9

Episode 6

The ninth series of John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme is very different to the previous eight. It's still written by John Finnemore, "one of our best sketch writers", (The Observer), and performed by him with "a great supporting cast of Margaret Cabourn-Smith, Simon Kane, Lawry Lewin and Carrie Quinlan" (The Telegraph), and there are still sketches and songs. But, with no live studio audience this year, John has taken the opportunity to try something completely new.

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme started in 2011 and quickly established itself as "One of the most consistently funny sketch shows for quite some time" (The Guardian), and "One of the funniest and most inventive new radio comedy shows of recent years" (The Daily Mail).

Written by ... John Finnemore
Newt ... John Finnemore
Russ ... Lawry Lewin
Deborah ... Margaret Cabourn-Smith
Jerry ... Simon Kane
Vanessa ... Carrie Quinlan

Other parts played by the cast.

Original music composed by .... Susannah Pearse
Original music performed by ... Susannah Pearse and Sally Stares
Recorded and edited by ... Rich Evans at Syncbox Post
Production coordinator ... Beverly Tagg
Producer ... Ed Morrish

A BBC Studios Production


FRI 23:30 Influencers (m00114t3)
Influencers

Katy Brand and Katherine Parkinson write and star in a new comedy about the online world of influencing, where they play Ruth and Carla – two stars of the online business world.

They are bound together by a carefully controlled public image involving lucrative product placement and well paid endorsements. But behind the scenes things are not always so harmonious.

We find Ruth and Carla worrying about company finances and plotting their next big move into podcasting to give their shared business a boost. They are taking delivery of all their new equipment when they hear that a rival influencer, Grace Broadstairs, has been rushed to hospital. As she is incapacitated, all her followers are now up for grabs. Wishing Grace well is also a perfect theme for the first podcast episode, A Lovely Chat with Ruth and Carla – if they can just figure out how the microphones work.

Award-winning duo Katy Brand and Katherine Parkinson write and star in this sharp new comedy, taking an affectionate swipe at the very modern world of influencing. The podcast A Lovely Chat with Ruth and Carla, as featured in the show, will be available to listen to on BBC Sounds.

Cast:
Carla – Katy Brand
Ruth – Katherine Parkinson

Written by Katy Brand and Katherine Parkinson
Producer: Liz Anstee

A CPL production for BBC Radio 4




LIST OF THIS WEEK'S PROGRAMMES
(Note: the times link back to the details; the pids link to the BBC page, including iPlayer)

A Family of Strangers 17:00 SUN (m0012qyn)

A Home of Our Own 14:45 SUN (m0010f9n)

A Point of View 08:48 SUN (m0012r7v)

A Point of View 21:48 SUN (m0012r7v)

A Point of View 20:50 FRI (m0012sxf)

Able to Parent 20:00 TUE (m000v2t4)

All in the Mind 21:00 TUE (m0012qgk)

All in the Mind 15:30 WED (m0012qgk)

Archive on 4 20:00 SAT (b085hbz9)

Archive on 4 09:00 SUN (m0012pc6)

BBC Inside Science 16:30 THU (m0012sb1)

BBC Inside Science 21:00 THU (m0012sb1)

Bells on Sunday 05:43 SUN (m0012rp4)

Bells on Sunday 00:45 MON (m0012rp4)

Beyond Belief 16:30 MON (m0012sd4)

Call to Kabul 13:45 MON (m0012s8f)

Call to Kabul 13:45 TUE (m0012smt)

Call to Kabul 13:45 WED (m0012smw)

Call to Kabul 13:45 THU (m0012smy)

Call to Kabul 13:45 FRI (m0012swj)

Christmas Meditation 00:15 SUN (m0012rw0)

Christmas Service 09:00 SAT (m0012rtp)

Common Ground 11:30 FRI (m0012sw4)

Consumed by Desire 16:00 TUE (m0012s83)

Correspondents' Look Ahead 20:00 FRI (m0012sxc)

Counterpoint 15:00 MON (m0012sd0)

Crossing Continents 20:30 MON (m0012q5v)

Crossing Continents 11:00 THU (m0012s9b)

Dead Ringers 12:18 SAT (m0012nyr)

Deborah Frances-White Introduces... 22:45 MON (m000tmmh)

Deborah Frances-White Introduces... 22:45 TUE (m000tlwf)

Deborah Frances-White Introduces... 22:45 WED (m000tlbn)

Deborah Frances-White Introduces... 22:45 THU (m000tnrh)

Deborah Frances-White Introduces... 22:45 FRI (m000tp8s)

Desert Island Discs 11:00 SUN (m0012rhj)

Desert Island Discs 09:00 FRI (m0012rhj)

Dr John Cooper Clarke at the BBC 21:45 SAT (b09jvvnw)

Drama 14:15 MON (m000j9kf)

Drama 14:15 TUE (m000p0t6)

Drama 14:15 WED (m000czys)

Drama 14:15 THU (m0012s9v)

Ed Reardon's Christmas Week 13:30 SAT (m000qjh5)

Fags, Mags and Bags 18:30 THU (m000k2bh)

Faith in Music 16:00 MON (m0012q5x)

Faith in Music 11:30 THU (m0012s9d)

Farming Today 06:30 SAT (m0012rtk)

Farming Today 05:45 MON (m0012rpj)

Farming Today 05:45 TUE (m0012sdy)

Farming Today 05:45 WED (m0012s90)

Farming Today 05:45 THU (m0012qhq)

Farming Today 05:45 FRI (m0012sbx)

Feedback 20:00 SUN (m0012rjq)

Fortunately... with Fi and Jane 17:00 SAT (m0012rvf)

Four Thought 05:45 SAT (m0012qxg)

Four Thought 09:30 TUE (m0012qh4)

Four Thought 20:45 WED (m0012qh4)

Gambits 19:45 SUN (m0012rjn)

Gardeners' Question Time 07:00 SAT (m0012rhy)

Gardeners' Question Time 14:00 SUN (m0012rhy)

Gardeners' Question Time 15:00 FRI (m0012swp)

Great Lives 16:30 TUE (m0012s85)

Great Lives 23:30 THU (m0012s85)

HM The Queen 15:00 SAT (m0012rv5)

I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue 12:04 SUN (m0012ny7)

I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue 18:30 MON (m0012sdd)

In Our Time 09:00 THU (m0012s94)

In Our Time 21:30 THU (m0012s94)

In Touch 20:40 TUE (m0012s8h)

Influencers 23:30 FRI (m00114t3)

It's a Fair Cop 18:30 TUE (b0bgrxvk)

Jacqueline Wilson's Wonderful World with the BBC Symphony Orchestra 14:00 SAT (m0012rv3)

Jeremy Irons Reads TS Eliot 21:00 SAT (b086l220)

Jeremy Irons Reads TS Eliot 21:00 SUN (b086l8m2)

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme 23:00 SUN (m000vqr4)

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme 23:00 MON (m000vypf)

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme 23:00 TUE (m000w5jh)

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme 23:00 WED (m000wcyr)

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme 23:00 THU (m000wlnr)

John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme 23:00 FRI (m000wsyb)

Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton 09:45 MON (m0012scd)

Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton 09:45 TUE (m0012s7j)

Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton 09:45 WED (m0012qfs)

Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton 09:45 THU (m0012s96)

Just William - The Great Performer by Richmal Crompton 09:45 FRI (m0012sy2)

Last Word 20:30 SUN (m0012r7d)

Last Word 16:00 FRI (m0012swt)

Lemn Sissay's Poetry Rebels 19:00 FRI (m0012sx7)

Lights Out 20:30 THU (m000zcfq)

Limelight 14:15 FRI (m0012swl)

Loose Ends 18:15 SAT (m0012rvp)

Loose Ends 11:30 MON (m0012rvp)

Loose Ends 21:00 FRI (m0012sxh)

Michael Palin's Memory Palaces: Terry Gilliam 15:30 TUE (m000xm6p)

Midnight News 00:00 SUN (m0012rvy)

Midnight News 00:00 MON (m0012rp2)

Midnight News 00:00 TUE (m0012sdk)

Midnight News 00:00 WED (m0012s8m)

Midnight News 00:00 THU (m0012qhb)

Midnight News 00:00 FRI (m0012sbj)

Money Box 15:00 WED (m0012qgh)

Moominland Midwinter 11:00 SAT (m0012rtt)

Moral Maze 22:15 SAT (m0012q3l)

Moral Maze 20:00 WED (m0012qh2)

Natural Histories 06:35 SUN (b07gfgv5)

New Year Solutions 14:45 FRI (m0001t9w)

News Review of the Year 22:00 SUN (m0012rjt)

News Summary 12:00 SAT (m0012rtw)

News Summary 06:00 SUN (m0012rnq)

News Summary 12:00 SUN (m0012rp0)

News Summary 12:00 MON (m0012scm)

News Summary 12:00 TUE (m0012s7n)

News Summary 12:00 WED (m0012qg0)

News Summary 12:00 THU (m0012s9g)

News Summary 12:00 FRI (m0012sy4)

News and Papers 06:00 SAT (m0012rth)

News and Papers 07:00 SUN (m0012rnw)

News and Papers 08:00 SUN (m0012rh4)

News and Weather 15:05 SAT (m0012rv7)

News 22:00 SAT (m0012rvt)

Open Book 16:00 SUN (m0012rj3)

Open Book 15:30 THU (m0012rj3)

Open Country 06:07 SAT (m0012q6d)

Open Country 15:00 THU (m0012s9x)

Out of the Ordinary 11:00 TUE (b08hqf5t)

PM 17:00 MON (m0012sd6)

PM 17:00 TUE (m0012s87)

PM 17:00 WED (m0012qgr)

PM 17:00 THU (m0012sb3)

PM 17:00 FRI (m0012sww)

Party 23:30 MON (m0001r7w)

Paul Sinha's General Knowledge 00:15 TUE (m000y0kp)

Paul Sinha's General Knowledge 00:15 WED (m000y6p4)

Paul Sinha's General Knowledge 00:15 THU (m000ydm5)

Paul Sinha's General Knowledge 00:15 FRI (m000ylfx)

Pick of the Week 18:15 SUN (m0012rjj)

Political Thinking with Nick Robinson 20:00 MON (m0012qfy)

Political Thinking with Nick Robinson 11:00 WED (m0012qfy)

Prayer for the Day 05:43 SAT (m0012r89)

Prayer for the Day 05:43 MON (m0012rpg)

Prayer for the Day 05:43 TUE (m0012sdw)

Prayer for the Day 05:43 WED (m0012s8y)

Prayer for the Day 05:43 THU (m0012qhn)

Prayer for the Day 05:43 FRI (m0012sbv)

Profile 19:00 SAT (m0012rj8)

Profile 05:45 SUN (m0012rj8)

Profile 17:40 SUN (m0012rj8)

Quote... Unquote 23:00 SAT (m0012plr)

Quote... Unquote 19:15 SUN (m0012mw7)

Radio 4 Appeal 07:54 SUN (m0012rgv)

Radio 4 Appeal 21:45 SUN (m0012rgv)

Radio 4 Appeal 15:27 THU (m0012rgv)

Ruby Wax Talking Human 23:30 WED (m0012qh8)

Sandi Toksvig's Hygge 18:15 MON (m0012sdb)

Sandi Toksvig's Hygge 18:15 TUE (m0012s8c)

Sandi Toksvig's Hygge 18:15 WED (m0012qgw)

Sandi Toksvig's Hygge 18:15 THU (m0012sb7)

Sandi Toksvig's Hygge 18:15 FRI (m0012sx2)

Saturday Live 10:00 SAT (m0012rtr)

Science Stories 11:00 FRI (m0001r8x)

Screenshot 19:15 FRI (m0012sx9)

Selection of BBC World Service Programmes 01:00 SAT (m0012r83)

Selection of BBC World Service Programmes 01:00 SUN (m0012rw4)

Selection of BBC World Service Programmes 01:00 MON (m0012rp8)

Selection of BBC World Service Programmes 01:00 TUE (m0012sdp)

Selection of BBC World Service Programmes 01:00 WED (m0012s8r)

Selection of BBC World Service Programmes 01:00 THU (m0012qhg)

Selection of BBC World Service Programmes 01:00 FRI (m0012sbn)

Sending Mum Abroad 16:30 FRI (m0012pl5)

Shipping Forecast 00:48 SAT (m0012r81)

Shipping Forecast 05:34 SAT (m0012r85)

Shipping Forecast 17:54 SAT (m0012rvh)

Shipping Forecast 00:48 SUN (m0012rw2)

Shipping Forecast 05:34 SUN (m0012rw6)

Shipping Forecast 17:54 SUN (m0012rjb)

Shipping Forecast 00:48 MON (m0012rp6)

Shipping Forecast 05:34 MON (m0012rpb)

Shipping Forecast 00:48 TUE (m0012sdm)

Shipping Forecast 05:33 TUE (m0012sdr)

Shipping Forecast 00:48 WED (m0012s8p)

Shipping Forecast 05:33 WED (m0012s8t)

Shipping Forecast 00:48 THU (m0012qhd)

Shipping Forecast 05:33 THU (m0012qhj)

Shipping Forecast 00:48 FRI (m0012sbl)

Shipping Forecast 05:33 FRI (m0012sbq)

Short Works 12:04 SAT (m0012rty)

Short Works 00:30 SUN (m0012rty)

Short Works 15:45 FRI (m0012swr)

Sideways 00:15 MON (m0012q30)

Six O'Clock News 18:00 SAT (m0012rvm)

Six O'Clock News 18:00 SUN (m0012rjg)

Six O'Clock News 18:00 MON (m0012sd8)

Six O'Clock News 18:00 TUE (m0012s89)

Six O'Clock News 18:00 WED (m0012qgt)

Six O'Clock News 18:00 THU (m0012sb5)

Six O'Clock News 18:00 FRI (m0012sx0)

Slow Radio Comedy 23:30 TUE (m000zv4s)

Some Hay in a Manger 11:45 SUN (b085ttg5)

Something Understood 06:05 SUN (b01ng1j3)

Something Understood 23:30 SUN (b01ng1j3)

Sophie Willan's Guide to Normality 23:45 WED (b09wt190)

Start the Week 09:00 MON (m0012scb)

Start the Week 21:30 MON (m0012scb)

Sunday Worship 08:10 SUN (m0012rh8)

Sunday 07:10 SUN (m0012rny)

Taste: My Life Through Food by Stanley Tucci 07:45 SAT (m0012r8c)

The Ambridge Mystery Plays 15:00 SUN (m0012rj0)

The Archers Omnibus 10:00 SUN (m0012rhc)

The Archers 19:00 SUN (m0012rjl)

The Archers 14:00 MON (m0012rjl)

The Archers 19:00 MON (m0012s81)

The Archers 14:00 TUE (m0012s81)

The Archers 19:00 TUE (m0012qgf)

The Archers 14:00 WED (m0012qgf)

The Archers 19:00 WED (m0012qh0)

The Archers 14:00 THU (m0012qh0)

The Archers 19:00 THU (m0012sb9)

The Archers 14:00 FRI (m0012sb9)

The Briefing Room 20:00 THU (m000xmm0)

The Casebook of Max and Ivan 11:30 WED (m000cn0p)

The Flipside with Paris Lees 21:00 WED (p0b05w53)

The Food Programme 12:32 SUN (m0012rhp)

The Food Programme 15:30 MON (m0012rhp)

The Hidden History of the Staircase 11:00 MON (m0012scj)

The Kitchen Cabinet 16:30 SUN (m0012rj5)

The Kitchen Cabinet 15:00 TUE (m0012rj5)

The Listening Project 13:30 SUN (m0012rhw)

The Media Show 16:30 WED (m0012qgp)

The Media Show 21:30 WED (m0012qgp)

The Missing Hancocks 18:30 WED (m000qmpv)

The News Quiz 18:30 FRI (m0012sx4)

The Princess Bride 15:15 SAT (m0012rv9)

The Princess Bride 12:04 MON (m0012scp)

The Princess Bride 12:04 TUE (m0012s7q)

The Princess Bride 12:04 WED (m0012qg2)

The Princess Bride 12:04 THU (m0012s9j)

The Princess Bride 12:04 FRI (m0012sw8)

The Reunion 09:00 WED (m0012qfq)

The World This Weekend 13:00 SUN (m0012rht)

The World Tonight 22:00 MON (m0012sdh)

The World Tonight 22:00 TUE (m0012s8k)

The World Tonight 22:00 WED (m0012qh6)

The World Tonight 22:00 THU (m0012sbg)

The World Tonight 22:00 FRI (m0012sxk)

Things Fell Apart 09:00 TUE (m0012s7g)

Things Fell Apart 21:30 TUE (m0012s7g)

Things That Made the Modern Economy 09:45 SAT (m000cmr4)

Think with Pinker 16:00 THU (m0012s9z)

Thinking Allowed 16:00 WED (m0012qgm)

This Cultural Life 19:15 SAT (m0012rvr)

This Cultural Life 19:15 MON (m0011467)

This Cultural Life 19:15 TUE (m0010fl3)

This Cultural Life 19:15 WED (m0010n89)

This Cultural Life 19:15 THU (m0010wp3)

Today 06:00 MON (m0012sc8)

Today 06:00 TUE (m0012s7d)

Today 06:00 WED (m0012qfn)

Today 06:00 THU (m0012s92)

Today 06:00 FRI (m0012svy)

Tweet of the Day 06:05 SAT (b03k6slx)

Tweet of the Day 08:58 SUN (b09c0pw0)

Tweet of the Day 05:58 MON (b0910svf)

Tweet of the Day 05:58 TUE (b0979f3x)

Tweet of the Day 05:58 WED (b08v08m2)

Tweet of the Day 05:58 THU (b03k5c63)

Tweet of the Day 05:58 FRI (m0001mt4)

Uncanny 23:30 SAT (m0012rvw)

Weather 06:57 SAT (m0012rtm)

Weather 12:57 SAT (m0012rv1)

Weather 17:57 SAT (m0012rvk)

Weather 06:57 SUN (m0012rnt)

Weather 07:57 SUN (m0012rgz)

Weather 12:57 SUN (m0012rhr)

Weather 17:57 SUN (m0012rjd)

Weather 05:56 MON (m0012rpl)

Weather 12:57 MON (m0012sct)

Weather 12:57 TUE (m0012s7v)

Weather 12:57 WED (m0012qg7)

Weather 12:57 THU (m0012s9n)

Weather 12:57 FRI (m0012swd)

Wild Inside 21:00 MON (m0012qxn)

Will-of-the-Dump 11:30 TUE (m00120wj)

With Great Pleasure 08:00 SAT (m0012r7x)

Woman's Hour 16:15 SAT (m0012rvc)

Woman's Hour 10:00 MON (m0012scg)

Woman's Hour 10:00 TUE (m0012s7l)

Woman's Hour 10:00 WED (m0012qfw)

Woman's Hour 10:00 THU (m0012s98)

Woman's Hour 10:00 FRI (m0012sw2)

World at One 13:00 MON (m0012scw)

World at One 13:00 TUE (m0012s7x)

World at One 13:00 WED (m0012qg9)

World at One 13:00 THU (m0012s9q)

World at One 13:00 FRI (m0012swg)

You and Yours 12:18 MON (m0012scr)

You and Yours 12:18 TUE (m0012s7s)

You and Yours 12:18 WED (m0012qg5)

You and Yours 12:18 THU (m0012s9l)

You and Yours 12:18 FRI (m0012swb)

You're Dead To Me 13:00 SAT (p0b97gdq)