TV and radio

2nd February 2001 at 00:00
Pick of the week Love in a Cold Climate BBC1, Sunday, February 4 8.45-10pm

With its country-house settings and Anthony Andrews prominent in the cast, this two-part adaptation of Nancy Mitford's novel is bound to invite comparison with Brideshead Revisited, but it soon becomes clear that the Mitford take on the British upper crust in the Thirties is far less rose-tinted than Evelyn Waugh's - life was different, of course, for "gels".

The one amiable eccentric here is Uncle Matthew, played with obvious relish by Alan Bates, a dyspeptic aristo who likes to get out the hounds and hunt his daughters through the woods. He would have been amazed by an England where abusing foreigners was considered incorrect and hunting was about to be banned by Parliament.

The character was based on Mitford's father, Lord Redesdale, and the family life of the Mitford girls is the subject of Wednesday's Omnibus (BBC1, 10.35-11.25pm). Their fictional counterparts, meanwhile, give an insight into a world labouring under byzantine social rituals and a sense of impending doom.

School spotlight The A-Z of Love and Sex C4, Fridays from February 9 9.30-9.55am

Assuming that 14 to 17-year- olds already know the technical details, this series concentrates on relationships and saying "yes" or "no".

Most of the experts are young people talking about their own experiences - it's always reassuring to know that you are not alone in your anxieties and desires. Film clips, dramatisations and some amusing cartoons support the message in a seres that should prove a useful resource for PSHE. A video, book and net notes are available as well.

Geographical Eye Over Europe C4, Thursdays until March 6 10.30-10.50am

This week's programme in this series for 11 to 14-year-olds looks at the rebuilding of Berlin after the Cold War and conveys a real sense of the excitement felt by the planners and architects involved.

The destruction of the city in the Second World War and its subsequent division left a wasteland at the centre which is being filled by new buildings, while new railways and other means of transport unite the formerly divided halves. The next film, in a series that examines trends in Europe, describes changes in a remote part of the New Germany and is followed, on February 27 and March 6, by two films on Romania.

Best on radio The Jewish Journey Radio 4, Thursday, February 8, 8-8.30pm

Andrew Sachs, who came here as a refugee from Nazi Germany, begins a four-part personal account of 1,000 years of Jewish life in Britain. He visits the site of what is believed to be the oldest medieval ritual bath, or mikvah, outside the Holy Land, and recalls the alternating history of acceptance and rejection of Jews in England over the centuries.

"It's been a slow and steady journey towards freedom," Sachs concludes, "with a few ups and downs along the way."

Robin Buss Full education programme schedules can be found online at: programmesspring2001.cfm

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