BBC One's blog

5:15pm Tuesday 25 December on BBC ONE

Christmas Eve 1892, and the falling snow is the stuff of fairytales.

When the fairytale becomes a nightmare and a chilling menace threatens Earth, an unorthodox young governess, Clara, calls on the Doctor for help. But the Doctor is in mourning, reclusive and determined not to engage in the problems of the universe. As old friends return, will the Doctor really abandon humankind or will he fight to save the world – and Christmas – from the icy clutches of this mysterious menace?

Starring Matt Smith, Jenna-Louise Coleman, Richard E Grant and Tom Ward.

Executive producers – Steven Moffat and Caroline Skinner; produced by Marcus Wilson; written by Steven Moffat.

4:35pm Tuesday 25 December on BBC ONE

The premier of the half-hour animated film Room On The Broom, based on the magical children’s picture book written by Children’s Laureate Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Axel Scheffler.

Room On The Broom is an enchanting tale about friendship and family from Magic Light Pictures, the producers of the hugely successful The Gruffalo and The Gruffalo’s Child.

It tells the story about a kind witch who invites a surprising collection of animals to join her on her broom, much to the frustration of her cat. The gang ultimately saves the witch from a fearsome dragon, and in gratitude she rewards them with a magnificent new broom which has room for everyone.

The film is joyously narrated by Simon Pegg and the six lovable characters are voiced by stellar acting talent – Gillian Anderson as the Witch, Rob Brydon as the Cat, Martin Clunes as the Dog, Sally Hawkins as the Bird, David Walliams as the Frog and Timothy Spall as the dastardly Dragon.

Room On The Broom is produced by Michael Rose and Martin Pope of Magic Light Pictures (The Gruffalo, The Gruffalo’s Child, Chico & Rita); and Ren� Aubry (The Gruffalo, Gruffalo’s Child) has composed the music.

2:00pm Tuesday 25 December on BBC ONE

Top Of The Pops returns with a special festive one-hour show on Christmas Day, jam-packed with the best music and brightest pop stars of the year.

Hosted by Fearne Cotton and Reggie Yates, the biggest pop party on TV will feature exclusive performances from many of the young acts who’ve topped the charts this year and the all-important recap of who has secured the coveted Christmas Number 1 spot.

10:00pm Tuesday 25 December on BBC ONE

The traditional Christmas Day service comes live from St Mary Redcliffe, which has stood in the city of Bristol for the last 800 years and which was once described by Elizabeth I as ‘The fairest, goodliest, and most famous parish church in England’.

This year, the story of the Nativity is reflected within a family communion led by the Revd. Wendy Hough, with the Revd. Gwyn Owen, Area Dean for South Bristol giving the address.

Along with the local congregation, will be others from Bristol churches and the surrounding area. They will be joined by the Church Choir to sing traditional carols which will include O Come All Ye Faithful, Away In A Manger, In The Bleak Midwinter, Ding Dong Merrily On High and Hark The Herald Angels Sing.

Andrew Kirk is the Director of Music and organist. Andrew was appointed in 2003 and holds a full time position at the church.

11:45pm Monday 24 December on BBC ONE

BBC One heralds the start of Christmas Day with the traditional Midnight Mass for Christmas Eve live from St Anne’s Cathedral in the vibrant city of Leeds in West Yorkshire.

The Mass is celebrated by the Dean, Monsignor Philip Moger and will include the blessing of the crib. The homily is given by Monsignor Michael McQuinn.

The Mass setting is the tuneful and majestic Grande Messe Solonelle, by Louis Vierne. Other music includes: O Come All Ye Faithful, Hark! The Herald Angels Sing, O Little Town of Bethlehem, The Sussex Carol, It Came Upon a Midnight Clear, Today a Saviour Has Been Born to Us and Mary’s Magnificat.

The cathedral choirs are conducted by the Diocesan Director of Music, Benjamin Saunders, and the organist is Thomas Leech.

10:15pm Monday 24 December on BBC ONE

With the festive season fast approaching, Agnes Brown finds herself facing her busiest Christmas yet.

Spiritual son Trevor is visiting from the missions, grandson Bono is sleeping over on Christmas Eve, and there are three new faces to feed on Christmas Day now that Agnes’s youngest son Dermot is the father of triplets. But first things first – Agnes must finish the simple task of decorating the tree.

And it seems as though Christmas in the Brown household is only going to get busier. When visiting, priest Father Damien announces that the Finglas Nativity play has been cancelled. Agnes vows to stage a Nativity play of her own in the local community centre. However, she meets stiff resistance from Father Damien, who is wary of meddling mothers like Agnes and refuses to ask permission from the Bishop. But nobody ever says no to the formidable Agnes Brown.

Cathy is furious when she discovers that Agnes has been reading her mail and decides to play a prank on her interfering mother. Convinced that she has been entered into a ‘Best Christmas Mother’ competition, Agnes starts being unusually nice to everyone – even Granddad! And Cathy isn’t the only one playing tricks. Agnes gets her hilarious revenge on Dermot’s snooty mother-in-law Hillary Nicholson after she scoffs at the idea of Agnes playing the Virgin Mary.

Plus there are plenty of other Christmas crises for the Brown family. Who will Buster and Dermot get to play Santa in their Christmas Grotto? Will Rory take Dino to the hairdressing award ceremony? But most importantly – will Agnes ever get to play the Virgin Mary?

9:00pm Monday 24 December on BBC ONE

Max is livid when he hears the full extent of Derek’s manipulation of Tanya and sets to put his brother in his place but being the head of the family, Derek does not heed Max’s warning and sets to blow the Brannings world apart…

Alfie desperately tries to hold things together for the sake of Tommy but with his heart broken will he be able to?

Max is played by Jake Wood, Derek by Jamie Foreman, Tanya by Jo Joyner and Alfie by Shane Richie.

8:15pm Monday 24 December on BBC ONE

And so it seems the Prophets did not lie. As the great battle rages on Camlann’s mighty plain, Merlin faces his moment of destiny.

Don’t miss the very last episode of Merlin as the legend draws to a spectacular and emotional end.

Colin Morgan is Merlin, Bradley James is Arthur, Angel Coulby is Gwen, Katie McGrath is Morgana, Richard Wilson is Gaius and John Hurt is the voice of the Great Dragon. Tom Hopper, Rupert Young, and Eoin Macken return as The Knights of the Round Table.

Ep 13/13

9:00pm Monday 24 December on BBC ONE

Two thousand years ago, St. Paul travelled the Mediterranean world as Christianity’s first international ambassador. He was a man on a mission travelling many thousands of miles by foot and many more by sea.

His journey brings him from Asia Minor to Europe. In Greece, Paul establishes churches and brings new converts to the Christian faith. He deals with the issues that the new church communities have to confront, such as the role of women.

In key locations such as Athens and Corinth, David is keen to hear from local historians and archaeologists who help him better understand Paul and the world in which he lived. His radical message of a new Christian world order brought Paul into conflict with the Roman authorities. Tradition says he was executed in Rome but not after he had sown the seeds that would see the eventual establishment of Christianity.

8:30pm Sunday 23 December on BBC ONE

Written by Victoria Wood and inspired by an article in the New Yorker magazine, Loving Miss Hatto tells the story of an ‘ordinary’ married couple who managed to pull off the greatest fraud the classical music world has known, all from their modest bungalow in a genteel Hertfordshire town.

It is a story of two young people with high hopes who, like most of us, get knocked back by life – and then get a second chance to put things right. Above all, it is a love story.

In the grey, post-war London of the 1950s, a young chancer named William Barrington-Coupe, known to all as ‘Barrie’, is working at a music publishers but harbours ambitions to become a classical music impresario. One day while delivering music to an orchestra rehearsal, Barrie is bowled over by a young pianist’s playing – finding his first client, wife and future in one moment. The young pianist is Joyce Hatto.

Barrie sets about turning Joyce into a classical music star. Initially things go well but then fate intervenes and realising that they both lack what it takes to really make it, they retire to Hertfordshire and a ‘normal’ life.

But one day, in 2002 fate intervenes again and Barrie is given the chance to revive Joyce’s career, despite Joyce being in her Seventies and suffering from terminal cancer. Within a few years, Joyce is being dubbed ‘the greatest living pianist that almost no one has ever heard of’ and had critics raving about her sublime recordings.

Yet six months after her death, many of Hatto’s recordings were discovered to be those of other pianists; Joyce and Barrie had apparently pulled off the greatest hoax in classical music. This is their story.

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