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Last Updated: Thursday, 29 April, 2004, 12:10 GMT 13:10 UK
BBC programmes: The year ahead
Cutting It
Popular dramas such as Cutting It are returning this year
In its annual statement of programme policy, the BBC has made a commitment to reduce makeover shows - and increase arts, current affairs and documentaries output.

Here are its plans for TV and online in more detail:


Current affairs: Panorama to continue in regular weekly Sunday night slot, plus at least four specials a year in peak time. Subjects include Iraq and Rwanda. Real Story series, plus one-off single pieces. Question Time, plus issue-driven programmes, theme days and seasons. Current affairs programming commitment increased to at least 90 hours.

Political coverage: The Politics Show and This Week. Also politics through dramas such as Faith, about the miners' strike.

Documentaries/factual: One Life series. Britain's Secret Shame, series addressing childhood issues. Regional programming with Inside Out weekly series.

Consumer: Watchdog. Three-part series of Whistleblowers on corporate malpractice and substandard working conditions. Brassed Off Britain on customer service, and Should I Worry About? on public health topics.

Huw Edwards, BBC News
The BBC has pledged an ongoing commitment to news programmes
News: Three national and international bulletins during the day and peak viewing. News at 10pm six days a week. Regional news integrated in bulletins. At least 1,380 hours of news programmes per calendar year. New interactive service on Ten O' Clock News. BBC News 24 broadcast overnight.

Comedy: New series from the creators of My Family. New sitcom Carrie and Barry. Primetime move for My Dad's the Prime Minister.

Drama: Adaptation of Anthony Trollope's He Knew He Was Right, plus biographical docudrama. Promise of distinctive contemporary drama series and one-offs. Five more afternoon plays. Return of Spooks, Waking The Dead, Cutting It, Silent Witness. Ongoing soaps EastEnders, Holby City and Casualty.

Entertainment: Interactive programmes such as Come and Have a Go If You Think You're Smart Enough.

Arts: Imagine and Rolf on Art continue, and a new series, Brilliantly British, features classic figures such as Wedgwood and Chippendale. Coverage of performances such as The Proms. Minimum 45 hours of arts and music.

History: Programmes about significant historical figures such as Genghis Khan. The story of 19th Century society in Victorian Murder Mystery.

Science and health: Six-part series on evolution of life on earth. Space Odyssey, using CGI technology to explore solar system. BBC-wide campaign on obesity, with series on diet, fitness and lifestyle. Stress Test programme.

Rolf on Art
Rolf on Art has been a hit with viewers
Factual: The Natural History of Britain, presented by Alan Titchmarsh, and Himalayas series with Michael Palin. Pride, feature-length drama about lions. Commitment to 650 hours of new factual programmes.

Sport: Wimbledon, the Grand National, the FA Cup, the 6 Nations rugby, the Open golf, Euro 2004, the Olympics. Interactive coverage. Return of Match of the Day to Saturday nights. In all, 260 hours of core programming.

Specials: 60th anniversary of D-Day landings, includes a major drama. Children In Need 25th anniversary, Comic Relief.

Religion: Songs Of Praise, The Heaven and Earth Show. Coverage of major religious festivals, documentaries, historical programmes. Eighty hours of programming.

Rural affairs: Countryfile, extended from 30 to 60 minutes for half of its run.

Children's: Some 400 hours of programmes including Newsround, Blue Peter and dramas such as Balamory.


News and current affairs: Newsnight remains the flagship programme. This World continues, plus shorter series and one-offs on international affairs such as World Wedding and One Day of War. Analysis of topical issues in 10-part series If. Coverage of Westminster and party conferences. Documentary series on terrorism, disability, parenting and mental health. Also specials on ageism and disability. In all, a minimum of 240 hours of current affairs and 100 hours of news excluding Newsnight.

Arts and entertainment: The Culture Show, a major new programme of cultural and arts journalism. Continuation of Arena and Newsnight Review. Proms coverage. Second series of Restoration. New series Peter Ackroyd's London and Art of the Garden. Opera Month in June, including Faust live from the Royal Opera House. In comedy, continued collaboration with BBC Three, bringing new series as well as established BBC Two shows Coupling and Dead Ringers. Second series of QI and Early Doors. At least 200 hours of arts and music programming.

Griff Rhys Jones
Griff Rhys Jones will present a second series of Restoration
Drama and features: The Grid, an examination of the world of terrorism. An adaptation of Jake Arnott's gangster history The Long Firm. Ongoing series of Top Gear and Gardeners' World. New weekly football programme and series on personal enrichment, Grown Up Gappers.

Factual: Interactive series Britain Goes Wild aiming to build a UK wildlife map. Series encouraging viewers to research ancestry and broaden knowledge of social history. Ongoing series of Horizon, Timewatch and Wild. Programmes on significant World War II anniversaries. Business series The Money Programme and Trouble at the Top joined by new title I'll Show Them Who's Boss. In all, 500 hours of factual shows, plus 20 hours of religious shows.

Learning: Vocational learning for children and adults on BBC Learning Zone. Programmes for schools and Open University commissions, including Rough Science.

Live broadcasts: Wimbledon, Ascot, snooker, darts, bowls. Trooping the Colour, the Proms, Glastonbury, Eisteddfod.

BBC Three

Development of The 7 O'Clock News weekday programme. The Third Degree current affairs programme. Series on the secrets of martial arts and the hidden chemistry of human attraction. Informative dramas including Brief Lives following a trainee solicitor. New comedies including The Mighty Boosh and Smoking Room, plus the return of Little Britain, Swiss Toni and Monkey Dust. In-depth coverage of Glastonbury and Eurovision. New series on health and history.

BBC Four

Landmark series including Light Story and Jonathan Miller's Atheism, plus a regular media show. Global affairs programme The World continues with an enhanced agenda. New series such as New Kids on the Bloc, exploring politics and culture of EU accession countries. A season on education crisis. Return of Dinner With... political discussion. Shows on the UK's contribution to jazz, theatre and 1960s art. Extended coverage of BBC Young Musician of the Year. Other arts coverage includes Saturday Cinema, Storyville, The Blues and Womad festival.

The BBC's website aims to encourage audiences to realise the full benefits of the digital world by delivering landmark events, such as this year's Olympics. The news service on is updated every minute of every day, with up to 2,000 new stories or features added weekly. Issues are explored in greater depth than is possible on TV or radio. Major stories are supported with audio or video content. There are homepages for each of the UK's nations and local news through the 55 Where I Live sites. Audiences can debate issues through Have Your Say and a host of message boards.

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