UK TV programmes to watch this week : 09/12/2017

Blue Planet II (BBC 1/HD | 8:00pm to 9:00pm | Sunday 10th December 2017)

David Attenborough explores the issues behind the series’ most spectacular stories, meets pioneers striving to protect the ocean and examines the future of the planet.

Coastal Railways with Julie Walters (Channel 4/HD | 8:00pm to 9:00pm | Sunday 10th December 2017)

Julie boards the famous Great Western Railway, as she heads down to Cornwall. She stops first at Torquay, on the English Riviera, where she fondly recalls childhood holidays. At Paignton, Julie boards the heritage steam line to Kingswear and its allegedly haunted castle. In the fishing village of Polperro, Julie investigates smugglers’ tales and joins the RNLI on a practice run off St Ives. And in Penzance, she meets the extraordinary cake-makers at Peboryon Cakes, whose amazing creations can cost thousands. At the end of a packed trip, Julie catches the sleeper night train back to London.

Concorde (Channel 5/HD | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Monday 11th December 2017)

Second of a two-part documentary. By the early 1980s, Concorde was admired the world over. It seemed that it was loved by all, but not by the management of British Airways. They were horrified that it was losing tens of millions a year and knew that something must be done.

The Secret Life of the Zoo (Channel 4/HD | 8:00pm to 9:00pm | Wednesday 13th December 2017)

There are only around 50 Javan green magpies left in the world, and two of them live at Chester Zoo. Keepers are desperate to breed youngster Permata with older female Metina, but the problem is that he still has his juvenile blue feathers. Will he mature and can he help breed the next generation? Chester’s bachelor pad of lemurs is in for a shock with a female on her way to their island. In the lemur world females rule the roost, so the boys’ peaceful existence may be coming to an end. The zebras also have a newcomer to their herd: female Okoth, who starts to make a play for power, which doesn’t go down well with top zebra Florence. And the zoo’s three Komodo dragon sisters need some space from each other. Keeper Isolde has an unusual plan to take them for outside walks.

The Channel (Channel 4/HD | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Wednesday 13th December 2017)

For thousands of people the Channel is a workplace, with money to be made from its riches. Dredgers mine the sea floor for valuable gravel and sand, which is used for concrete and building works. Off-shore fishing has taken place along the south coast for centuries. But who gets to use the Channel is changing. New industries and technologies are fighting for space with the old, transforming what the Channel is for. Wind farms are rising like skyscrapers and now a new multi-million-pound electricity cable called Project Nemo is being laid between Britain and Belgium. But while it’s being laid all other users of the Channel can’t go near it. This episode follows Nemo project manager Dave as he attempts to stick to the schedule, as a day’s delay could cost a six-figure sum. Meanwhile, the project has pushed fisherman Steve out of his fishing grounds.

Penelope Keith’s Coastal Villages (more4 | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Wednesday 13th December 2017)

Penelope Keith sets forth on a special seaside journey to discover the coastal villages of the UK: villages that cling to the side of cliffs, snuggle around harbours, proudly guard estuaries, or lounge along beaches. In the first episode, Penelope discovers the seaside villages of West Sussex and the Isle of Wight. She quickly finds herself immersed in stories of seafarers, smugglers and shipwrecks. In the village of Bosham, she uncovers the real reason behind King Canute’s battle with the tide. In Birdham, Penelope visits the country’s first purpose-built marina and climbs on board with Olympic gold medallist Sarah Ayton for a sail up the estuary. There’s also a flight in the cockpit of a hovercraft; the astonishing story of a local woman and an old £10 note; and an epic battle of the waves.

Blitz (BBC 2/HD | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Thursday 14th December 2017)

During the Blitz over 450,000 bombs dropped on Britain, and every bomb has its own story. This episode looks at the deadly impact of the incendiary bomb that set fire to St Peter’s Church in the historic heart of Bristol. Before November 1940, the Castle Street area was full of shops, businesses and homes all served by St Peter’s. But on the night of Sunday 24 November 1940, the German bomber aircraft came.

Brunel (Channel 5/HD | 8:00pm to 9:00pm | Friday 15th December 2017)

Rob Bell concludes his two-part documentary series on Britain’s great engineer with the story of his two masterpieces of ship design – the SS Great Britain, the great-great-grandmother of all modern ships, and the SS Great Eastern, the world’s largest ship that dominated the final years of his life and generated such great controversy that it has been blamed for causing his death.

The Last Leg (Channel 4/HD | 10:00pm to 11:05pm | Friday 15th December 2017)

The live, joyous, topical comedy extravaganza hosted by Adam Hills, Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe examines the biggest and most entertaining news stories and rounds up the main talking points of the week, with special guests including Rag’n’Bone Man who performs Human.

All TV guide information taken from DigiGuide —

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