A special programme looking at Sir David Attenborough’s early career as a sound recordist will form part of BBC Radio 4’s Christmas schedule this year.
Other highlights include Ant and Dec appearing on Desert Island Discs, new radio dramas featuring the stories of Beatrix Potter and comedians appearing in daily sketches on programmes including Today and Woman’s Hour throughout December for The Radio 4 Comedy Advent Calendar. There’s also a tribute to the Big Ben Bongs and a Christmas edition of Just A Minute.
Gwyneth Williams, Controller, Radio 4 and 4 Extra, says: “While the festive season invites us to indulge in rich food and drink, I know that Radio 4 listeners will also welcome the chance to indulge their minds. So I hope they will join Radio 4 for a delicious array of programmes over the Christmas period.”
David Attenborough returns to Tweet Of The Day on 16th December, which will get a slot in the Today programme for a month in addition to its place in the early morning schedule. A special Tweet on Christmas Day will feature the Robin’s winter song. Sir David said: “I’m so pleased to be back on Radio 4 with more wonderful sounds and stories from the bird kingdom. Since its launch earlier this year, Tweet Of The Day has been brightening up the morning for many dawn risers, so I’m delighted that during the Christmas period those who prefer to sleep a little later will be treated to some special birdsong amid the hustle and bustle of the Today programme.”
To mark his return, Radio 4 will also be broadcasting a special feature, David Attenborough: My Life In Sound on 16 December at 11am, in which Sir David will talk to sound recordist Chris Watson about his early foray into the world of natural history filmmaking as a sound recordist himself. Chris, who has worked with David on many of his films, will ask about the challenges of recording the calls of birds on very primitive and cumbersome equipment, and listeners will get to hear some of David’s earliest recordings, which are held by the British Library and have not been broadcast on radio before.