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Christmas arrives at BBC with huge festive lineup announced

Gather ’round as we unwrap the magic of the season with the BBC Christmas TV Lineup with magical festive shows, comedy, and much more.

Image credit: BBC/South Shore Productions/Neil Ferry

With a host of family favourites, Christmas specials, thrilling dramas, comedies, and movies, there is something for everyone to enjoy on BBC and iPlayer this festive season.

Charlotte Moore, BBC’s Chief Content Officer says: “This year’s Christmas line-up on the BBC is an extravaganza of must-watch shows! Join us as we welcome a brand new Doctor and wave goodbye to our beloved sitcom Ghosts. Alongside a spectacular range of entertainment, drama, comedy, and factual programming across the festive fortnight. It’s essential viewing for everyone as we bring friends and families together across the UK.”

Doctor Who New Doctor 2023
Image credit: Credit: BBC/Bad Wolf/James Pardon

On Christmas Day Ncuti Gatwa will take control of the TARDIS as the Fifteenth Doctor in his first adventure following Doctor Who’s 60th anniversary, the finale of the hugely popular comedy Ghosts will see the restless spirits and Button House residents give an unmissable send-off. The star-studded animation of Tabby McTate is based on Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s book about the wonderful friendship between a musical cat and a talented busker.

EastEnders - Sharon, Linda, Denise, Suki, Kathy and Stacey - The Six Christmas 2023
Credit: BBC/Jack Barnes/Kieron McCarron

Making it’s highly anticipated reveal, Eastenders will soon discover which unlucky male meets his demise. Hit drama The Tourist returns with Jamie Dornan and Danielle Macdonald returning.

Call the Midwife Christmas Special 2022
Credit: BBC / Neal Street Productions

Call the Midwife will take viewers back to 1968 when Apollo 8 was set to circle the moon and the new drama series Beyond Paradise makes its Christmas special debut, alongside a feature-length Death in Paradise. Follow David Attenborough as he investigates the discovery of a lifetime in Attenborough and the Giant Sea Monster. Charles III: The Coronation Year will take viewers for a unique insight into the life of King Charles III and Queen Camilla following the first year of his reign.

Strictly Come Dancing Christmas 2020
Image credit: BBC

Strictly Come Dancing returns to the Ballroom for a Christmas special as Dan Snow, Sally Nugent Jamie Borthwick, Tillie Amartey, Danny Cipriani, and Keisha Buchanan all take to the floor alongside a musical performance from Sam Ryder.

Image credit: BBC/Hungry McBear/Gary Moyes

Other entertainment includes The Graham Norton Show, The Hit List, The Weakest Link, Blankety Blank and Would I Lie To You. Also making a return is Michael McIntyre’s Christmas Wheel featuring Rylan Clark, Peter Crouch, and Nicole Scherzinger as the celebrity contestants hope to answer to get lots of money for their chosen charities.

Bob, Paul, and Ted travel to Scotland to fish for salmon and to taste the traditional Hogmanay celebrations on offer in Mortimer and Whitehouse: Gone Fishing and Jay Blades will return for some magical festive fixes in The Repair Shop.

BBC Mary Berry's Highland Christmas -BBC & Rumpus Media
BBC Mary Berry’s Highland Christmas -BBC & Rumpus Media

Masterchef judges Gregg Wallace and John Torode will also welcome back four of the most memorable celebrities from past series in Celebrity MasterChef: Christmas Cook-Off 2023. Nigella Lawson’s love of Amsterdam’s food and culture at Christmas will be explored in Nigella’s Amsterdam Christmas and Dame Mary Berry heads to Scotland for a magical Christmas Special with Mary Berry’s Highland Christmas and The Hairy Bikers are back on their bikes after almost a two-year break in The Hairy Bikers: Coming Home For Christmas.

Image credit: BBC/Open Mike/Ellis O’Brien

There’s plenty of laughter too with a range of comedy to enjoy. Mrs Brown’s Boys is back with two episodes as Mammy tries to enjoy a nice, peaceful Christmas before the whole gang starts the New Year by attempting a tough new health and fitness regime. Spandau Ballet’s Gary and Martin Kemp return with a follow-up to their mockumentary in The Kemps: All Gold. Not Going Out, QI, Here We Go, Live at the Apollo, and Bad Education return with Christmas specials.

There will be a whole host of network premiers of films including Toy Story 4, The Addams Family 2, The Witches, House of Gucci, and the live-action version of The Lion King and there will be plenty of box sets and classic Christmas specials to stream on iPlayer.