Thursday 7th August
15:00: Open Country – WWII Secrets of The Peak District
Good programme about what happened in the North during WWII. Some interesting stories.
Matt Baker discovers the Second World War secrets of the Peak District.
Nestled away in the Peak District are two Second World War ‘training grounds’. The first is the Derwent Valley, with the wide open dam that heard the roar of Lancaster bombers as they prepared for the historic Dambuster raids.
The second is the lesser known Burbage Valley, where in secrecy, British and Canadian troops were trained for war, leaving their battle scars across the landscape. Burbage Valley is also home to one of the first bomber decoys in the country. In an extroadinary bid to distract German bombers, a mini-Sheffield was built. This hoax site comprised an elaborate arrangement of lights and fires contained in baskets and trenches that were designed to replicate Sheffield’s railway marshalling yards as seen from the air at night. This ‘model city’ was set into action by brave Sheffield men who had to run straight into the decoy to activate it, knowing full well that if they were successful it could mean that they were running to their own graves.
As well as the above, found this in a forum discussion via a Google search.
…in one of Alfred Prices’s books he recounts an archetypical tale of a dummy RAF airbase complete with fake runways, buildings and fake hardboard aircraft. One day a German Ju88 dropped a bomb smack in the centre of the fake runway, it didn’t explode. When the “bomb” was examined it was found to be (a) made of wood and (b) contain a note that said “Bang!”
20:00: The Report
More on Swine Flu. The Report looks into vaccination for the disease, what’s happening in terms of developing countries, and if people would take it anyway.
Simon Cox investigates the next phase in the swine flu story: the mass vaccination programme. Will the majority of people be persuaded to be vaccinated voluntarily and will countries that need the vaccine be able to get it?
Mentioned this before, funny audio take off of Wikipedia. Episode 3.
Friday 8th August
11:00: Can’t Connect, Won’t Connect
What happens if you can’t or won’t join the ‘digital revolution’? Bit of an alien idea with the way I’m used to it.
A so-called ‘digital revolution’ is promised to transform public and private life, but many millions are still not online in Britain, saying that they don’t need or want to join this revolution. Chris Bowlby discovers who the digital ‘refuseniks’ are, and explores how far their resistance can go. And he asks the government’s new digital inclusion champion, Martha Lane Fox, what will happen if attitudes do not change.
13:30: More or Less
God I love this. Put a bunch of statistics nerds together and let them loose. In this one the absolute stand out is the team looking at the figures quoted in this YouTube video, entitled ‘Muslim Demographics’. Going through the stats in there, checking them all at source, and then establishing that they’re pretty much all poor interpretations of the data (looking at it kindly, and not assuming they’ve deliberately mis-interpreted them).
Tim Harford investigates statistics which some claim reveal the ‘Islamification’ of Europe and checks whether the Home Office has been doing its sums properly. Do its claims about the DNA Database really add up?
18:30: The Now Show.
Standard. Topical comedy.
Saturday 8th August
11:30: From Our Own Correspondent
This week’s programme features…:
Including communities stranded on either side of the hostile border between Georgia and South Ossetia, bull running on a budget in Spain, and a look inside the private playground of Marshall Tito of Yugoslavia.
20:00: Archive on 4: Under The Red Duster
Programme’s presented by John Prescott, and it’s all about the history Merchant Navy through wartime, before and after.
Via archive, poetry and new interviews, John also tells the little-known story of the British Merchant Navy. The tale starts from when its ships once carried half of all the cargo that moved around the world and its role in wartime, through to its near-collapse in the 1970s and 80s and the changes in law in recent years that have helped rebuild the fleet.
Sunday 9th August
14:45: The Tribes of Science: The Computer Programmers
First programme in what could be a very interesting series. Peter Curran’s looking into various scientific disciplines, in this one he’s looking at Computer Programmers – specifically the people who’re behind Second Life.
Series in which Peter Curran visits members of the many and varied disciplines of science, from astronomy to zoology, to explore their habitat, customs, rituals and beliefs. Beneath the typecast and somewhat nerdy image of scientists, Peter finds passion, humour and, on occasion, an enviable sense of community.
Peter starts off by visiting computer programmers. Do the makers of the virtual world, Second Life, spend more time in their virtual world than in the real one? Are they architects, engineers or computer geeks, or actually highly competent people?
17:00: Rewriting The Psychiatrist’s Bible
Investigating the way that links between panels that publish standard texts in psychiatry, and the companies that manufacture them could be interpreted.
Matthew Hill investigates the links between psychiatrists and the pharmaceutical industry. Should there be increased transparency over top psychiatrists’ links to the industry?
He looks at the influence of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Health Disorders (DSM), produced by the American Psychiatric Association (APA), which has been heavily criticised in the past for a lack of transparency between the panel members and pharmaceutical companies. Matthew also examines the ‘Chinese menu’ aspect of the DSM’s diagnostic criteria and the sheer number of conditions it includes. Matthew investigates whether the APA’s transparency policy goes far enough and if we are medicalising real conditions or just traits of human personality.
21:30: In Business: Hell For Leather
Looking at Timpson’s cobblers, and how they run the family business. Mainly by taking good ideas from the people at the front line.
How do you manage a traditional family shoe repair firm with 550 outlets all over the country? John Timpson does it by dropping in on them all the time to find out what’s going on, day by day. He calls it ‘upside-down management’. Peter Day went along for the ride.