Scattered across this nation are mysterious buildings that hold the key to some of our country's biggest secrets. In this second series, after last year’s successful first run, Michael Portillo unlocks the doors to more extraordinary abandoned locations to reveal his hidden history of Britain and the world - a military hospital which transformed the face of Britain; a hidden city within a city that housed generations of emergency heroes; a top secret bunker and Russian submarine that show just how close we came to World War Three; the country’s first super cinema and Britain’s most iconic pier, now teetering on the edge of oblivion, that reveals the origins of the British seaside resort.
Plastic Surgery Pioneers: Cambridge Military Hospital
We may think the ability to surgically alter our bodies is a new phenomenon. In this episode Michael Portillo shines a light inside the long abandoned Cambridge Military Hospital in Aldershot, discovering how a medical revolution was born in war that has allowed us to transform how others see us and ultimately how we see ourselves – from drastically remodelling our faces to even reassigning our gender.
Almost 140 years ago this grand building was built as a response to the world’s first modern war, the Crimea, when soldiers suffered terrible injuries on a horrific scale that had never been seen before. Closed for the past 22 years, Michael is allowed inside to discover the far-reaching legacy of the extraordinary medical innovations that took place there.
Harold Gillies was a young military surgeon during the First World War, during which 20 million soldiers were wounded. Michael confronts the devastating impact of modern weaponry in a vivid demonstration of what it can do to vulnerable flesh. He discovers how modern battlefield medicine meant that many injured in this terrible war survived, but returned home with disfiguring and life-altering facial injuries. And he learns how Harold Gillies invented a revolutionary new solution to the problem of keeping grafted flesh alive, inventing modern plastic surgery in the process. A 92-year-old WWII veteran, one of the few surviving world war veterans to have been operated on using the techniques Gillies pioneered, reveals how the surgery transformed him and helped him marry the love of his life.
If that wasn’t enough, Michael discovers how Gilllies went on to deploy the surgical techniques he pioneered at the Cambridge Military Hospital in an entirely new – and at the time illegal – cutting edge operation. He would use them to perform the world’s first, highly secretive, female-to-male sex reassignment surgery.
BlindBoy Boatclub is on a crusade.
As one half of the satirical duo, The Rubber Bandits, he is renown for his sharp social comment (and for wearing a neatly trimmed plastic bag on his head), but in this film, he is going one step further - he’s seeking payback.
With a unique mix of irreverent commentary, jaw dropping stunts, and a band of undercover reporters, Blindboy launches a fierce polemic on the Nation’s broken housing system and dishes out a few slaps to those who are breaking it.
He seeks out unscrupulous landlords, developers who manipulate the system, the money launderers who store their money in expensive property, and he unpacks the economic factors and Government policy that has led
to a system that is wrong.
It’s wrong that millennials have got the dirty butt end of the broken housing system.
It’s wrong that the system leaves millennials homeless or living in expensive windowless cupboards. And it’s very wrong that the system leaves the vulnerable thinking it’s okay to exchange sex for rent. It’s definitely not ok, and so Blindboy is on a simple mission to right the wrongs and undestroy the world.
A brand-new series that enters the sizzling world of summer jobs in the sun. Club Rep Wars follows two teams of wannabe club reps competing to win the chance to work a season in the Greek party paradise of Zante. The Pink and the Blue teams fiercely contest each other at a series of fun-packed events to prove who can triumph at running the best sun-soaked parties.
After last week's fireworks left the teams at even numbers, everyone is bringing their A-game to impress hunky new arrival, 19-year-old Scarborough lad Joe. He's straight to work with Blues at a Glitter and Gold party and immediately into a sparkly romance with Karys, which coming at the expense of work doesn't go down well with teammate Catissa, or boss BJ. The next day Joe takes his lady skills and a stinking hangover to the Pink team who are all aboard a boat party where things are heading to the rocks thanks to a storming Rob and Nicola argument.
With things all at sea for both teams, Joe's got a tough decision as to who to join.
In July 1943, Italian Dictator Benito Mussolini loses power and the Nazis take control of most of Italy. This episode explores the frenzied looting of that country by the Nazis in the last year of the war and reveals a secret OSS/CIA mission that helped save some of the greatest treasures of western civilization.
In Florence, Rome and Switzerland, Robert Edsel is on the trail of the missing Florentine Treasures. In the summer of 1944, the Nazis looted dozens of storage depots around Florence containing over 700 works of art. Most were recovered in 1945, but 3 remain missing to this day, including a painting worth approximately $5 million.
Outside Rome, Conor Woodman explores the incredible underground bunker complex of Mount Sorrate. During the Cold War, this impregnable fortress was the designated shelter for the Italian President in case of nuclear war. During the Second World War it was German military headquarters and a storage depot for 60-80 tons of looted Italian gold. Intelligence reports released just three years ago reveal the Italian government still believes the gold could be hidden in the complex, and Conor meets a 92-year old man who says he has a map showing where the cache is hidden.
In Tuscany and South Tyrol, James Holland is on the trail of Nazi SS General Karl Wolff. In 1945, Wolff held Top Secret negotiations with American OSS officer Alan Dulles, future head of the CIA. Dubbed Operation Sunrise, Wolff offered the Americans early surrender of Nazi forces in return for immunity from post-war prosecution. To sweeten the deal, Wolff also told Dulles he would reveal where the Nazis were hiding thousands of stolen art treasures. James investigates the deal, whether or not Wolff lived up to his side of the bargain, and if Wolff made off with some treasure to finance his lavish post-war life.
Comedians Joel Dommett and Nish Kumar join a gang of sheep shearers in New Zealand. It’s the ultimate work hard play hard lifestyle but can the boys handle both the jobs and the alcohol?
Rich Kids Go Skint is back, with even more privileged kids (who spend their lives shopping, staying in 5 Star hotels, or flying on private jets to exclusive destinations) swapping their extravagant lives of luxury to live with families on the breadline. They’ll live life below the poverty line to experience the shocking truth of how others live. They’ll shop, feed, work and clean for families who struggle to make ends meet. Shocking tantrums and heartfelt tears aplenty as these kids face up to the most challenging experience of their lives.
Becca is a 21-year old rich kid, related to royalty. Becca divides her time between family homes in London and Wiltshire, but she’s never more at home than hanging around Chelsea and shopping for the most exclusive designer brands. Becca lives off the ‘Bank of Dad’, and when she wants to buy something her allowance doesn’t stretch to, she picks up the phone to daddy. When she’s not swanning up Sloane street shopping, Becca hops from holiday to holiday never having to worry about picking up the bill.
She’ll be spending time with Nureen, a 34-year old single mum from Harlesden. Nureen’s child spends much of the time with his dad because skint but community-spirited Nureen runs classes to teach people with even less than her to cook. Becca, who eats out all the time, will come face to face with the reality of making meals on a tiny budget.
From the second of Becca’s arrival, she is thrown in the deep-end by helping Nureen in one of her workshops. Becca needs to roll up her sleeves and get messy mixing ingredients to make doughnuts.
Becca bubbles up with tears from the get-go when Nureen discloses how much she has to live on, and a scary night-time walk around the area rattles the rich kid who feels a long way from her privileged and pampered life.
Becca knuckles down to learn self-defence with Nureen and shops for the ingredients to make one of Nureen’s budget basics: chicken curry. But will Becca bond with her host from Harlesden or will she want to escape back to her life of luxury?
Naked Attraction is BACK! The dating show that dares to bare all returns and this time it’s even more revealing!
The world’s most daring dating show is back! Helping sassy singletons avoid the pitfalls of fake online profiles and fancy filters by choosing their perfect partner based solely on the power of Naked Attraction. When we are entirely unfiltered what do people really find sexually attractive?
This series, it’s bigger and bolder than ever, with Anna Richardson on hand to guide the contestants through the game of choosing a partner naked -whittling 6 people down to 1. Expect even more shocking and surprising events than ever before.
Stepping into the studio first is Charles, a 20 year old student from Sheffield. His love life is a disaster. If he’s not getting Cat Fished, he’s scaring women off with his conversation starters. A self-confessed “idiot”, he’s hoping to find his ‘fun weirdo’ by dating in reverse.
Next up is Lee, a 21 year old student. Identifying as non-binary and pan sexual, she’s open to dating all genders and is looking to find someone who accepts her for who she is.
With robust reporting and up-to-the-minute analysis, Nish Kumar and a team of hilarious correspondents keep you up to date with everything that’s happened – or not happened – this week.