UK TV programmes to watch this week : 16/12/2017

Coastal Railways with Julie Walters (Channel 4/HD | 8:00pm to 9:00pm | Sunday 17th December 2017)

Julie travels from Cardigan Bay to Liverpool. Her trips starts in Aberystwyth, Wales, where she was once ‘banned from every pub.’ Travelling north, she arrives at Tywyn, famous for its heritage steam railway and the inspiration behind Thomas the Tank Engine. She visits Llwyngwril, where the tiny community is literally trying to knit itself famous. Julie tries her hand at carriage painting in Boston Lodge, before catching the famous Ffestiniog railway through Snowdonia. There’s also the fastest zip wire in Europe and a lucky sheep farmer in Llandudno. Later, Julie visits the largest pet cemetery in Europe in Flint, before her final stop in Liverpool.

The Secret Life of the Zoo at Christmas (Channel 4/HD | 8:00pm to 9:00pm | Wednesday 20th December 2017)

It’s Christmas time and Chester Zoo’s keepers are busy making gifts for all the animals. But it’s a chaotic time for the chimps. With leader Dylan otherwise occupied by female attention, it’s a free-for-all when the group seek out their parcels. And with Mandy left out, not everyone ends up in a festive mood. Horned rhino couple Beni and Asha are also experiencing family dysfunction. With Asha attacking and then ignoring Beni, he’s left to find solace in the company of a deer. The zoo’s new thousand-strong family of leaf cutter ants work together to build a new home for themselves out of their Christmas bounty. And can dwarf mongoose couple Cooper and Mini deliver some new babies in time for Christmas?

The Channel (Channel 4/HD 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Wednesday 20th December 2017)

For 9000 years the English Channel was Britain’s natural border. But a decade ago, a treaty was signed that effectively moved our border to France. It turned a checkpoint into a flashpoint. This episode follows the struggle at Britain’s border during the first summer since the camp known as the Jungle was demolished, and the first since Britain decided to leave Europe. For how much longer can Britain keep people who want to come here over there? Cross-Channel ferry captain Mark and his crew guard their ship from migrants desperate to board it. The programme also meets Stuart, a businessman from Surrey who runs a private high-security truck stop in Calais where drivers can have their vehicles checked for migrants.

Penelope Keith’s Coastal Villages (more4 | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Wednesday 20th 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 this second episode, Penelope discovers the seaside villages of Northumberland and the Scottish Borders, and finds herself swept up by coastal tales of epic heroism, intrepid horticulture and smoked herring. On Lindisfarne, Penelope discovers how the architect Edwin Lutyens and garden designer Gertrude Jekyll designed a home on the exposed coastline. There are trips to Low Newton and its stunning golden beach and the medieval village of Warkworth. There’s also the story of Grace Darling at Longstone Lighthouse; a bracing battle of the sexes at Craster; and a high-speed lifeboat rescue off St Abbs.

The Last Leg Christmas Special (Channel 4/HD | 9:00pm to 10:00pm | Friday 22nd December 2017)

The award-winning show rounds off the 12th series with their unique brand of irreverent satire, topical comedy and a sprinkle of festive cheer. The final instalment of the year is a merriment-packed live Christmas edition where the boys are joined by some special guests live in the studio, including writer, actor and comedian Stephen Merchant and Georgia ‘Toff’ Toffolo from I’m A Celebrity.

All TV guide information taken from DigiGuide — www.getdigiguide.tv/?p=1&r=15119.

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