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BBC announces Christmas 2021 lineup

BBC has confirmed this year’s Christmas lineup and it looks like we’re in for a real treat! Here are some of the highlights for BBC One & BBC Two:

Shaun the Sheep: The Flight Before Christmas

WABBC / Ardman Animations

Shaun the Sheep, from the multi-award-winning independent animation studio Aardman, is coming to BBC One this Christmas for a new half-hour special featuring Shaun, Timmy and the Flock – as well as some new characters -in a mischief-filled festive caper.

Death In Paradise Christmas Special

Image Of BBC One Death In Paradise Danny John-Jules
Image Credit: BBC/Red Planet Pictures/Denis Guyenon

Fans of Death in Paradise are in for a Caribbean Christmas treat this December with the first ever feature length episode. Concluding the tenth anniversary celebrations, the festive 90-minute special, which stretches from a grey damp drizzly London all the way to the warm sparkling beauty of idyllic Saint Marie, will see the return of Danny John-Jules as charismatic Officer Dwayne Myers, for this celebratory episode.

Call The Midwife

Image Credit: BBC/Nealstreet Productions/Sally Mais

Series 11 begins with a Christmas special set in December 1966. Christmas promises to be a memorable one at Nonnatus House as Lucille (Leonie Elliott) and Cyril (Zephryn Taitte) prepare for their upcoming winter wedding. The Nonnatus team are faced with their busiest Christmas Day ever as the Maternity Home is filled with expectant Mums to be, each with their own challenging case. Luckily Mother Mildred (Miriam Margolyes) is on hand to support the team.

Doctor Who New Year’s Day Special

The Thirteenth Doctor (Jodie Whittaker) and friends will kick-start 2022 with an action-packed spectacular episode set to air on BBC One on New Year’s Day. The festive special will feature guest stars Aisling Bea (This Way Up, Living With Yourself, Quiz), Adjani Salmon (Dreaming Whilst Black, Enterprice) and Pauline McLynn (Father Ted, Shameless).

Worzel Gummidge

Two brand new one-hour films directed, created and starring Mackenzie Crook: Twitchers and Calliope Jane – inspired by the classic books by Barbara Euphan Todd – are coming to BBC One and BBC iPlayer this Christmas.

The Weakest Link Christmas Special

Image Credit:BBC/Alan Peebles

The Weakest Link is back on BBC One this Christmas, with a brand new host. BAFTA award winning comedian Romesh Ranganathan will bring his own twist to one of the world’s most iconic quizzes. Romesh is joined by 8 celebrities, each with their own connection to Christmas who will have to work as a team to try to win a maximum prize of £50,000 for their chosen charity.

Michael McIntyre’s Christmas Wheel

Image Credit: BBC/Hungry Bear/Gary Moyes/Matt Burlem

Bafta Award-winning Michael McIntyre hosts this special festive episode of The Wheel. Three famous faces – actor Danny Dyer, Radio and TV presenter Zoe Ball and comedian, actor and writer David Walliams – compete to complete The Wheel in an attempt to win money for their chosen charities this Christmas.

Blankety Blank

Image Credit: BBC/Thames/Matt Frost

Bradley Walsh hosts a fun-filled festive special of the legendary gameshow. A panel of six celebrities to fill in the missing BLANKS and help win some brilliant prizes for some very lucky contestants. He’s joined by Angela Rippon, Richard E Grant, Tom Allen, Sarah Millican, Mel B and Danny Jones.

I Can See Your Voice Christmas Special

Image Credit: BBC

The addictive play-a-long singing game show is back on the BBC for a fun-filled festive special. Paddy McGuinness hosts and is joined by Celebrity Investigators, Jimmy Carr, Alison Hammond and Amanda Holden plus special guest Leona Lewis. The player hoping to win £10,000 is joined by Gabby Logan and together they will need to tell the difference between the good and bad mystery singers, without ever hearing them sing a note! With seasonal lip sync songs and festive cheer, it’s the perfect game to play with the family this Christmas.

Mrs Brown’s Boys

Image Credit: BBC/Alan Peebles

It’s Christmas in Finglas once again. Agnes has been recruited to the church choir, but she’s under strict instructions from Father McBride that there’s to be no singing and certainly no dancing. That’s not the only thing off-limits, a Christmas tree shortage means Buster has to get even more creative than usual trying to impress Agnes by any means necessary. Meanwhile Dermot and Buster have organised this year’s festivities at Foleys and are holding a Murder Mystery night in aid of alcoholic greyhounds. What could possibly go wrong?

Not Going Out

Image Credit: BBC/Avalon/Mark Johnson

Not Going Out returns to BBC One this Christmas with a trip to the Panto. Lee Mack’s multi award-winning hit show, and longest running sitcom on air, will return this December.

It is Christmas and Lee (Lee Mack) is not happy that Lucy (Sally Bretton) had booked tickets to the Pantomime. Especially given the star of the show is Lucy’s teenage crush, Jason Donovan.


Image Credit: BBC/Monumental Television/Guido Mandozzi

The critically acclaimed and much-loved sitcom Ghosts will be back for a special Christmas episode this December.

In the run up to the festive season, Kitty becomes convinced that Santa has made an early stop at Button House when Mike and Alison discover a man living in a tent on their grounds. The ghosts’ advice on how to deal with him leaves much to be desired, but eventually Mike and Alison learn that they have more to offer this Christmas than they realised.

Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special

Strictly Come Dancing returns to the Ballroom for an all-star Christmas special as six Strictly stars take to the floor in a bid to be crowned Christmas Champions 2021.

Hosted by Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman, the show wouldn’t be complete without the festive foursome on the judging panel. The Christmas special will start with a sensational group routine featuring the celebrities and their professional partners, alongside the Strictly pros. And, as well as dancing, there’s plenty of music, with two very special performances from Jamie Cullum and Gary Barlow and Sheridan Smith.

The Hit List

Image Credit: BBC/Tuesday’s Child/Alan Peebles

It’s time for a star-studded Christmas Special of The Hit List! The three teams joining Marvin and Rochelle Humes for this festive episode are Actors and EastEnders stars Jake Wood and Tamzin Outhwaite, Choirmaster Gareth Malone and Saxophonist Yolanda Brown and comedians Alex Brooker and Ellie Taylor; but who will sleigh the competition and get the chance to win £10,000 for their chosen charity? Get ready to play along and shout out the answers at the telly!

The Wall Vs Celebrities Christmas Specials

Hosted by Danny Dyer, with questions voiced by TV legend Angela Rippon, the ultimate combination of strategy, general knowledge and luck returns to BBC One this festive season with two celebrity specials.

Would I Lie To You? At Christmas

Image Credit: BBC/Zeppotron, an Endemol Shine Company/Brian J Ritchie

Rob Brydon is back in the host’s chair for a festive edition of the award-winning comedy panel show Would I Lie To You? And as ever, David Mitchell and Lee Mack are the lightning-quick team captains. Over the course of the show, a stellar cast of celebrity guests reveal amazing stories about themselves. But are they telling the truth, or are they making it all up? David Mitchell is joined by Jim Broadbent and Rose Matafeo while Lee Mack is joined by Angela Rippon and Ardal O’Hanlon.

Top Gear – Driving Home For Christmas

In this festive episode, Chris Harris, Paddy McGuiness and Freddie Flintoff aren’t choosing their own cars, but instead choosing for one another. Yes, it’s time for Top Gear Secret Santa!

The Repair Shop

Image Credit: BBC/Ricochet/Kieron Mckarron

Christmas is just around the corner, and tucked away in a frosty corner of the British countryside, the Repair Shop barn is already bustling as the dedicated team of Christmas craftspeople prepare for their biggest and busiest ever holiday season.

The Great British Christmas Sewing Bee

Image Credit: BBC/Love Productions/James Stack

Brand new host Sara Pascoe throws a Christmas Sewing Bee extravaganza. To help her get into the festive spirit, she welcomes celebrity sewer Rev Kate Bottley, actors Antony Cotton and Kiell Smith-Bynoe, plus presenter Anneka Rice into the Sewing Room. Under the watchful eye of judges Esme Young and Patrick Grant, the four brave celebrities follow a pattern for a Christmas jumper, they transform a charity shop bundle into fancy dress outfit and create dresses from Christmas past. Only one celebrity can be granted their Christmas wish to win the coveted Christmas Sewing Bee award before they gather around the piano for a sing-song.

MasterChef Champions Special

Image Credit: BBC/Shine TV

For the very first time, five of the most memorable amateur champions return to the MasterChef kitchen in a cooking contest to rival any other. The competitors are: Tim Anderson – Champion 2011, Ping Coombes – Champion 2014, Saliha Mahmood-Ahmed – Champion 2017, Kenny Tutt – Champion 2018, and Irini Tzortzoglou – Champion 2019. Each of them is back to show how far their food and careers have progressed and to compete for the title of MasterChef Champion of Champions 2021.

Beauty and the Beast: A Comic Relief Pantomime for Christmas

Image Credit: BBC/Crook Productions/Quentin Blake

“Oh no it isn’t”, “Oh, yes, it is.” The world’s funniest AND most star-studded pantomime is back! The return of the popular Comic Relief Pantomime written by Ben Crocker and The Dawson Bros.

Two Doors Down

Image Credit: BBC Studios/Alan Peebles

Two Doors Down returns with another festive special of the hit comedy centred around a family and their insufferable neighbours.

Having been away in the Highlands last year, we’re back on home turf in Latimer Crescent. And it’s all merry and bright over at Michelle and Alan’s as they welcome the neighbours for a wee pre-Christmas get together… But the festive atmosphere soon turns a little fraught.

Live At The Apollo

This December, the BAFTA nominated Live At The Apollo returns with its sixth Christmas special, welcoming some of the biggest and best comedic talent to the stage for some festive funniness.

QI Christmas Special

Comedy panel quiz QI returns for a fun-filled festive special, hosted by Sandi Toksvig, with panellists Bonnie Langford, Joe Lycett, Sally Phillips, and regular guest Alan Davies.

The Ranganation Christmas Special

Image Credit: BBC/Zeppotron/Brian J Ritchie

Romesh Ranganathan, winner of the 2021 BAFTA TV Award for Comedy Entertainment Performance, returns alongside his celebrity guests, the Ranganation themselves and of course his mum Shanthi to take a festively funny and topical look at modern Britain in a special Yuletide edition of The Ranganation.

The Hairy Bikers Go North For Christmas

Image Credit: BBC/South Shore Productions/Jon Boast

The Hairy Bikers are back on the road, and this time they’ve got their sights set on creating the most fabulous Northern festive feast for their nearest and dearest.

Mary Berry’s Festive Feasts

Image Credit: BBC/Plank PR

Dame Mary Berry is ready to teach three truly hapless cooks how to create a fantastic Christmas Feast to surprise someone special.

The kitchen novices are invited to Mary’s home to share their ambitions for the feast and tell her all about the deserving person they want to spoil.

Gardeners’ World

Image Credit: BBC

In the second of three special programmes celebrating the gardening year, Adam Frost hosts the show from his garden.

Nick Bailey visits the winter garden at Sir Harold Hillier Gardens in Hampshire. He meets the head gardener and deconstructs the winter garden, which lies all but dormant during the summer months, before bursting into life and colour with a host of beautiful plants with the onset of winter.

These are just some of the highlights from BBC’s festive line-up and we can’t wait to watch them all! BBC also confirmed Mezzotint and Superworm Christmas specials.