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Melvyn Bragg explores the pivotal role of England's north in defining modern Britain, and its enduring effect on every part of the globe 'It's impossible not to admire the thrust and sweep of this series' The Telegraph In this captivating 10-part series, Melvyn Bragg brings all his enthusiasm, experience and expertise to a subject that has enthralled him his entire life: the importance of the North in shaping the United Kingdom. Joined by special guests including Dame Judi Dench, Sir Michael Parkinson, Joan Bakewell, David Hockney, Maxine Peake, Simon Armitage and Sir Geoffrey Boycott, he charts the ebb and flow of Northern power and influence, examining how one smallish geographical region came to have such an enormous effect on our culture worldwide: from science and philosophy to music and sport. Beginning his story from the top of Hadrian's Wall, Bragg looks at the fall of Rome and the rise of Northumbria, and considers the glorious Northumbrian Renaissance - and the mark left on the North by invading Vikings and Normans. He looks at the turbulent years of rebellion that swept the area and the idea of 'northern speech', and tells of his love for the Northern landscape that inspired Wordsworth, Coleridge, the Brontës and Turner. Bragg also celebrates the North as the heartland of the Industrial Revolution, and sings the praises of Manchester, the first city of that revolution. He explains how many radical movements had their genesis in the North: from Chartism and the suffragettes to the birth of the Labour Party. Bringing us right up to date, he looks at some great 20th Century cultural icons, such as the Beatles and Coronation Street. Finally, he reflects on 'Northern power', asking what being and sounding Northern means and questioning what the future holds for the North in the wake of the EU referendum. Also included In Our Time: Hadrian's Wall, in which Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss this famous archaeological monument, and the two-part series North and South: Across the Great Divide, which finds Ian Marchant travelling along England's North/South divide to ask what it really means - and see if it is shifting. Production credits Presented by Melvyn Bragg. Produced by Faith Lawrence With guests including: Simon Armitage, Syima Aslam, Prof Simon Bainbridge, Dame Joan Bakewell, Maria Balshaw, Prof Hannah Barker, Dr Sarah Bastow, Chris Bonington, Frank Cottrell Boyce, Sir Geoffrey Boycott, Claire Breay, Prof Michelle Brown, Revd Canon Rosalind Brown, Prof Sally Bushell, Prof Robert Colls, Julian Cooper, Ed Cox, Prof Katy Cubitt, Judith Cummins MP, Dame Judi Dench, Prof Richard Gameson, Toby Gordon, Lee Hall, Prof Ian Haynes, Susan Harrison, Prof Nick Higham, David Hockney, Prof Richard Horrocks, Howard Hull, Prof Judith Jesch, Dr Chris Jones, Dr Katy Layton-Jones, Dr Jill Liddington, Bill Lloyd, Natalie McCaul, Jimmy McGovern, Ian McMillan, Dr Katrina Navickas, Sir Michael Parkinson, Maxine Peake, Dr Robert Poole, Irna Qureshi, Canon Apiarist Adrian Rhodes, Lee Rigg, Jonnie Robinson, Prof Dave Russell, Jonathan Schofield, Rommi Smith, Prof Keith Stringer, Dr James Sumner, Dr Matthew Townend, Jenny Uglow, Matthew Watson, Prof Andy Wood First broadcast on BBC Radio 4, 29 August-9 September 2016 In Our Time: Hadrian's Wall Presented by Melvyn Bragg Produced by Victoria Brignell With Greg Woolf, David Breeze and Lindsay Allason-Jones. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 12 July 2012 North and South: Across the Great Divide Presented by Ian Marchant Produced by Mary Ward-Lowery With Sir Michael Darrington, Prof Danny Dorling, Rachel North, Dominic Watt, Prof David Morley, John Langton. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 21-28 March 2012 ©2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2021 BBC Studios Distribution LtdShow more
Household names nominate leaders from the past for BBC Radio 4's Great Lives Since its inception in 2001, Great Lives has been one of Radio 4's most popular programmes, presented by Joan Bakewell, Humphrey Carpenter, Francine Stock and Matthew Parris. The format is simple, but compelling: each week, a distinguished personality is invited to select an inspirational figure who has influenced them. Talking with the presenter and a guest expert, they assess the importance of their chosen candidate. This special collection, celebrating the programme's 20th birthday, comprises the very best episodes featuring leaders' lives, from the worlds of politics, religion, royalty, business and the military. Some are heroes, some tyrants, and several spark controversy. Among them AA Gill puts forward the case for Neville Chamberlain, Maxine Peake chooses Ellen Wilkinson, the Duke of Wellington is picked by Frederick Forsyth, and Leon Trotsky is selected by Christopher Hitchens in a hugely entertaining show that culminated in fireworks. In these cases, and many others, the life of the invited guest is as riveting as that of their subject - who wouldn't want to listen to Ken Livingstone discussing Robert Kennedy, George Monbiot champion Thomas Paine, and Trevor McDonald on Learie Constantine? From Nancy Dell'Olio on Lucrezia Borgia to Al Murray on Field Marshal Montgomery, these fascinating episodes showcase the lives of some of the most legendary figures from history, revealing their achievements and enduring influence and demonstrating why their greatness is undisputed. Episode list and date of first broadcast on BBC Radio 4: Robert Kennedy - 06/02/2009 Henry V - 08/12/2009 Richard Nixon - 17/08/2010 Bernard Montgomery - 01/10/2013 Richard III - 06/01/2015 Elizabeth I - 18/08/2015 Dag Hammarskjold - 23/08/2016 Neville Chamberlain - 20/09/2016 Gandhi - 26/12/2017 David Lloyd George - 30/05/2003 Queen Elizabeth 1 - 06/06/2003 Machiavelli - 02/04/2004 Thomas Paine - 23/04/2004 Lyndon B Johnson - 07/05/2004 Benjamin Disraeli - 28/05/2004 Michael Collins - 01/10/2004 Arthur Wellesly, the 1st Duke of Wellington - 03/06/2005 Genghis Khan - 01/04/2005 John Rockefeller - 06/05/2005 Ronald Reagan - 27/05/2005 Thomas Cromwell - 11/11/2005 Leon Trotsky - 08/08/2006 Eleanor Roosevelt - 22/08/2006 Millicent Garrett Fawcett - 22/12/2006 Julius Caesar - 25/05/2007 George Washington - 02/10/2007 Winston Churchill - 14/09/2010 Rommel - 26/08/2014 Ida B Wells - 19/08/2014 Learie Constantine - 07/04/2015 Abraham Lincoln - 26/01/2016 Lucrezia Borgia - 12/04/2016 Richard the Lionheart - 10/05/2016 Dadabhai Naoroji - 27/09/2016 Pope John XXIII - 24/01/2017 Sitting Bull - 09/05/2017 Emma of Normandy - 16/05/2017 Constance Markievicz - 19/09/2017 Ellen Wilkinson - 01/08/2017 Daniel O' Connell - 19/12/2017 Catherine the Great - 29/05/2018 Jayaben Desai - 10/04/2018 Copyright © 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd. (P) 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd Presented by Joan Bakewell, Humphrey Carpenter, Matthew Parris and Francine Stock Produced by Miles Warde, Peter Everett, Christine Hall, Perminder Khatkar, Mark Smalley, Charles Ledgard, Maggie Ayre, Beth O'Dea, Jolyon Jenkins, John Byrne, Polly Weston, Julia Johnson, Mary Ward-Lowery, Isobel Eaton, Toby FieldShow more
Fifteen highly original and darkly unsettling supernatural dramas, performed by some of Britain's finest actresses 'This is what we know about The Hotel. It is bigger on the inside than on the outside. Do not go into Room 63. Doors and windows do not stay in the same places. The Hotel listens when you speak. The Hotel watches... We'll be at The Hotel soon.' A place of myths, rumours and secrets, The Hotel looms over the dark Fens, tall and grey in its Gothic splendour. Built on cursed land, a history of violent death suffuses its very foundations - yet it has a magnetism that is impossible to ignore. On entering The Hotel, different people react in different ways. To some it is familiar, to others a stranger. Many come out refreshed, longing to return. But a few are changed forever, haunted by their time there. And almost all those affected are women... Here are the stories of The Hotel: stories of children, mothers, monsters, cult film-makers, thrill-seekers and workers on the night shift, all with their own tales of its strange power, of the horrors of Room 63, and of desperate but failed attempts to escape its seductive pull. Included are: The Hotel (read by Sara Kestelman); The Witch (read by Nicola Walker), The Build (read by Maxine Peake); Infestation (read by Anne-Marie Duff); Clean (read by Ronke Adékoluejo); The Wedding (read by Alexandria Riley); Conference (read by Jessica Raine); The Monster (read by Bettrys Jones); Night Watch (read by Anne-Marie Duff); Briony (read by Adjoa Andoh); Haunted (read by Laurel Lefkow); Mother (read by Rebecca Root); The Story (read by Juliet Stevenson); The Priest (read by Barbara Flynn) and The Film (read by Sara Kestelman). Written by Daisy Johnson, one of Britain's best contemporary novelists and the youngest ever to be shortlisted for the Booker Prize, these deliciously chilling ghost stories will linger in your mind long after hearing. Production credits Written by Daisy Johnson Produced by Justine Willett First broadcast on BBC Radio 4, 20 September-27 December 2020 ©2020 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2020 BBC Studios Distribution LtdShow more
Lady Chatterley's husband returns from the War paralysed from the waist down. Frustrated by his attitudes as much as his disability, she begins a love-affair with the gamekeeper, Mellors. She realises that to be fully alive she must live the life of the body as well as the mind, but in doing so she angers the conventions of her day. Banned for over 30 years for the explicit nature of its language and descriptions of sex, Lady Chatterley's Lover also exposes the dehumanisation of the mechanical age, and underlines the profound power of tenderness.Show more
The complete second series of the BBC Radio 4 full-cast drama about two single parents who met on an internet chat site and developed a friendship. First broadcast in the 'Woman's Hour Drama' slots from 23 August - 27 August 2010, this follows on from the first series which was originally transmitted in 2009 under the name of 'singleparentpals.com'. In the first series despite a succession of twists and turns, mis-timings and misunderstandings between the rather nervous, disorganised Tom and the mouthy, controlling Rosie, an underlying friendship and dependence seemed to emerge - but an actual meeting in the flesh failed to take place. Now, a year later, communications between cyberpals Rosie and Tom are still long-distance, by email, telephone or through the website. Contains the following episodes: 'A Clean Slate' - Rosie discovers that she quite likes her ex-husband's new girlfriend and that Tom has a new love interest. 'Dating for Beginners' - Tom's revelation that he is 'seeing' Siobhan spurs Rosie into the dating game. 'Doormats' - Not only has Rosie been sleeping with her ex-husband but she has become good friends with his girlfriend. Meanwhile Tom's ex treats him like a doormat. 'Emotional Quicksand' - Rosie's love-life is in a tangle and Tom is getting cold feet about Siobhan. 'Happy Now?' - Rosie and Tom meet. Series 2 of Sue Teddern's story of the long-distance friendship between two parents stars Maxine Peake as Rosie and Kris Marshall as Tom. Also included in the cast are Karina Jones, Thomas Rolinson, Christine Kavanagh, Alison Pettitt, Sam Dale and David Seddon. Directed by David Hunter.Show more
A BBC Radio 4 full-cast drama about two single parents who meet on an internet chat site and strike up a friendship. Originally broadcast in the 'Woman's Hour Drama' slots from 2 November 2009 - 6 November 2009 under the series name of 'singleparentpals.com'. The complete series 1 contains the following episodes: 'You Are Not Alone' - When a nervous Tom logs on to a website for lone parents for the first time, he finds new friends and an impatient response from the formidable Rosie. 'Getting Back on the Horse' - Rosie has an interview for promotion and Tom has his first date for years. Who is the most nervous of the two? 'Coming Clean' - The honesty game backfires on Tom. Is this the end of a short but beautiful friendship with Rosie? 'The Other Man' - Rosie has a new boyfriend but still seeks Tom's advice. 'We Can't Go on Meeting Like This' - Tom has a conference in Manchester - is this a chance to meet Rosie in the flesh? Sue Teddern's story of the developing friendship between two single parents who correspond via a parenting advice website stars Maxine Peake as Rosie and Kris Marshall as Tom. Also included in the cast are Laura Molyneux, Janice Acquah, Annabelle Dowler, Jonathan Tafler, Isadora Dooley Hunter, Matt Addis and Malcolm Tierney. Directed by David Hunter.Show more
A BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Chaucer's 'Troilus and Criseyde' by poet and writer Lavinia Greenlaw. One of the great works of English literature, this powerful, compelling story explores love from its first tentative beginnings through to passionate sensuality and eventual tragic disillusionment. Lavinia Greenlaw's new version for radio brings Chaucer's language up-to-date for a modern audience while remaining true to his original poetic intention. After seeing the beautiful widow Criseyde at the temple in Troy, Troilus falls instantly in love with her. Inexperienced in love, he is unable to act on his feelings and locks himself in his room to compose love songs. Criseyde's Uncle Pandarus becomes the matchmaker for the couple, but what will happen when Criseyde is handed over to the Greeks at the gates of Troy to join her 'traitor' father? The cast includes Tom Ferguson as Troilus, Maxine Peake as Criseyde and Malcolm Raeburn as Pandarus. Also starring Kathryn Hunt, Kevin Doyle, Terence Mann and Declan Wilson. Directed by Susan Roberts.Show more
David Tennant stars as Benedick with Samantha Spiro as Beatrice in Shakespeare's merry comedy of wit, words & romance. In Much Ado, the clarity of radio allows the wonderful verbal sparring between Beatrice and Benedick to sparkle as, high comedy and melodrama mix magically in a combination of prose and verse. BBC radio has a unique heritage when it comes to Shakespeare. Since 1923, when the newly formed company broadcast its first full-length play, generations of actors and producers have honed and perfected the craft of making Shakespeare to be heard. In the acclaimed BBC Radio Shakespeare series, each play is introduced by Richard Eyre, former Director of the Royal National Theatre. Revitalised, original and comprehensive, this is Shakespeare for the new millennium.Show more
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