Crossrail is Europe’s biggest engineering project – but is it also fast becoming a national laughing stock?
Named in honour of the Queen, it will carry 200 million passengers a year and see the biggest increase to rail travel since World War Two.
But it’s years behind schedule, billions over budget and dogged by all kinds of problems. So how has it all gone wrong?
This documentary tracks the troubled project from the very beginning and reveals exactly why it went off the rails with interviews from former workers, politicians, transport experts and the people who were promised Crossrail would bring huge benefits… only to find themselves waiting, and waiting, and waiting.
In this episode Romesh Ranganathan travels to Mongolia – a country which he has almost no prior knowledge of, save for the fact that it is famously in the middle of nowhere.
Landing in the capital Ulaanbaatar, Rom spends a week exploring this vast nation, guided by local entrepreneur and TV host Ider Od, seeing an enormous statue of the country’s iconic Genghis Kahn, visiting an energy centre in the middle of the desert and finding out how nomadic people meet a future partner, when their nearest eligible neighbour might live 100 miles away. Along the way he will take in ancient Shaman rituals, bizarre mystery statues, try his hand at Mongolian wrestling and take part in his own “vegan” Eagle hunting trip.
But Romesh will also encounter a country of contradictions. It full of vast empty open spaces and yet Ulaanbaatar has traffic calming measures to control the unbearable congestion.
It is the most sparsely populated country on earth – a vast wilderness, almost untouched by man. But is there actually anything worth seeing there? And would he recommend it as a holiday destination?
After a challenging start in Italy, the Brigade land in Bergen, Norway – a rising star on the Scandinavian food scene. The challenge for the Brigade here is to get to grips with the clean, fresh flavours of the regional produce and try to emulate the precise and beautiful style of well-regarded local chef Christopher Haatuft’s award-winning restaurant.
Jason knows that the step up in complexity will be a huge challenge for his Brigade and decides to bring in a more mature chef, Simon, to bolster his Brigade – leaving the rest of the chefs nervous that one of them will be going home. Along with Dale and Andy, Jason immerses the 11 chefs into the specifics of Scandinavian cooking and ingredients, but even making a seemingly simple venison stew is not as easy as it first appears for our young chefs.
A lacklustre performance from gastropub chef Jay leaves Jason unimpressed, and sushi chef Frankie’s difficulty in understanding what it is he is tasting leads Jason to worry that he has a less than perfect palate – a big problem for a professional chef.
With only a few days to teach his Brigade how to cook the delicate, artfully flavourful dishes chosen by rival Head Chef Christopher before they cook for a restaurant full of locals and three expert judges, Jason must make some difficult decisions about who will make up his Brigade for the final service.
The Great Gardening Challenge pits some of the best professional garden designers from across the UK against each other in a competition to find the best pair. Presented by Nicki Chapman and Diarmuid Gavin, the show sees the professionals compete, as they take under-used and under-loved spaces and in just 48 hours, and on a budget, create gardens that will transform the lives of truly deserving recipients – from war veterans to care homes for the disabled, hospitals to dementia sufferers. We see first-hand not just the skill of our competitors – but the many ways in which a beautiful garden can touch and improve the lives of everyone. At the end of each show only one garden team can be victorious, as their gardens are judged by two acclaimed garden gurus and multi award winners, Carol Klein and Mark Gregory.
It’s final time as the competition reaches its climax with just two pairs of professional garden designers remaining. Both pairs wowed the judges with their designs and planting in the previous round but now they take on their toughest challenge yet as they compete for the crown. They have to create show gardens at one of the world’s greatest gardens, RHS Garden Wisley in Surrey, for a budget of £10,000. With a brief set by the gardens curator they’ll need to take their designs to the next level if their want to win, and they’ve only got 48 hours to complete them. Adding to the pressure the weather is also against them.
At Barnsley Casualty staff clocking on are having problems logging on – the computer patient system has crashed and so they have to resort to old school methods – wheeling out a whiteboard to track where everyone is.
But while the computers have stopped, the emergencies haven’t. Arriving by ambulance is 68-year-old Ray who’s struggling to breathe. Junior Doctor George Kay is in charge of his care and discovers that Ray is due to go to Cyprus to attend his granddaughter’s wedding in two days. Will Ray recover in time to make the trip?
Also rushed into resus with breathing difficulties is 74-year-old Michael, an ex-miner. Advanced Nurse Practitioner Cheryl Barnes says, ‘there are lots of men that have worked down mines for many years that now are struggling with their breathing and it’s quite difficult to watch that, especially when your Dad was a miner, and your family were, before him.’
Volunteer Jane Allen offers her own brand of tea and sympathy, but struggles when she’s tasked with putting away a stationery delivery in the quiet room, as she explains, ‘no such thing as a quiet room, not when I’m here!’
Meanwhile, 15-year-old Callum is brought in with a football-related ankle injury and while his Mum and Dad are hoping it isn’t broken, Callum is keen to have a plaster cast. Dr Kay orders an X-Ray but the results aren’t clear. And in another paediatric bay Junior Doctor Ashleigh Trimble assesses 14-year-old Lewis who arrives in Casualty with suspected meningitis.
And as the shift comes to a close, Advanced Nurse Practitioner Richard Jackson treats 76-year-old Anne. She’s been sent straight to casualty by her GP, who had concerns about her racing heartbeat.
Going inside the extraordinary world of criminal excess Police, Camera, Auction tells the story of the auction house selling off crooks’ hidden riches. From sports cars and designer goods to outrageous bling and strange collectibles, we see the bizarre range of criminals’ possessions seized by specialist police teams and put under the hammer.
We meet the expert auctioneers and police teams working to seize the lavish assets of Britain’s criminals. With the proceeds often helping to repay people whose lives have been blighted by crime, we see the victims anxiously waiting the outcome of these auctions.
Comedian Tez Ilyas presents a fast-paced mix of stand-up, sketches and studio antics. Filmed in Manchester with a combination of comedians and celebrity guests, this hilarious and subversive show will blow the cobwebs off TV satire and prove once and for all that it’s possible to joke about anyone and anything without getting cancelled.
The show is a topical mix of sketches and studio antics, including provocative monologues and celebrity interviews.
Crashing into the studio show will be parodies, sketches and news bulletins from the Pakistani Broadcasting Corporation (PBC), starring Man Like Mobeen’s Guz Khan and comedian Sindhu Vee, which will provide a satirical take on the news and show Britain (and the West) in a very different light.
The studio show sees Tez take part in a briefing room – just like the ones that happened when he worked at the Home Office - on the hot topics of the day. Here he’ll be briefed by his fellow fast rising comics and Uncivil Servants, Sophie Willan and Adam Rowe, who will each try and sway him to their way of thinking.
He’ll then be joined by his co-anchor Sindhu Vee, in the on set shisha café, where they’ll be joined by funny, opinionated, big name guests.
Paul and Bob brave the wild lakes of Essex in search of the mighty Carp. They have the latest high-tech equipment and are fully prepared to stay all night if they have to, to catch the biggest fish they can.
They discuss the true meaning of a mid-life crisis and decide to visit a beauty clinic to see if there are any suitable treatments available to re-capture their youth.
Bob reveals his secret recipe to make the perfect scrambled eggs, but it’s not the only thing which shocks Paul.
Award-winning comedian Mo Gilligan's late night show with celebrity guests, music, sketches, iconic games and a chance to win prizes.