The BBC has confirmed its Christmas programming schedule for 2017, and we’ve got it all right here for you.

The line-up sees a predictable number of Christmas specials, including the likes of Strictly Come Dancing, Call the Midwife, Mrs Brown’s Boys and The League of Gentleman. Oh, and the small matter of Doctor Who.

Michael McIntyre’s Big Show will also once again feature a Christmas edition, while the final of The Apprentice will also air in Christmas week.

Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders will feature a couple of times, with one programme looking back at the lift of their close friend Victoria Wood who passed away in April 2016. They will also star in a programme celebrating their own career together called 300 Years of French and Saunders.

And for those who have missed the trio of Mary Berry, Mel and Sue after BBC lost the rights to The Great British Bake-off, worry not – they will also return for a special programme called A Big Christmas Thank You.

Here is a run-down of the highlights to look out for. We do not yet have details about the particular dates and times for all programmes.

Programmes that are a Christmas Special or Christmas-themed specifically are marked with a Christmas tree.


Call The Midwife

Snowfall on Boxing Day covers the country and courses major disruption. An unnamed couple living in a caravan suffers unforeseen complications during labour and the freezing weather is making things double as tricky. Dr Turner loses one of his patients because of the cold-snap, and Sister Julienne must explain to the family.

Death in Paradise

We think episode one of the new series will air between Christmas and New Year with the series continuing into January. It’s the seventh series of the award-winning drama that attracted an impressive nine-million viewers in 2017.

Ardal O-Hanlon is back as DI Jack Mooney, and he will join forces with all the regulars and a few guest stars to solve more murders on the idyllic island of Saint Marie.

Doctor Who

It’s the final chapter for the twelfth doctor played by Peter Capaldi, and it’s going to be a good one! He teams up with his former self – played by David Bradley – and a returning Bill Potts for one final adventure. It’s set among a very festive arctic snowscape too, and we’re promised that it’s an uplifting story.

Little Women

A brand new three-part drama, Little Women is based on the novel of the same name written by Louisa May Alcott. It has been adapted for TV by Heidi Thomas, the brains behind Call the Midwife.


We don’t know much about this one, but what we do know we love. It’s billed as a “ground-breaking new international thriller” and will be part of an eight-part series which kicks off over Christmas. An English-raised son of Russian mafia exiles is drawn deeper in to the world of organised crime. And by the way, if you’re a fan of Sopranos, the old HBO show that wowed audiences on both sides of the Atlantic, check out the artwork for McMafia. There feels like some definite nods toward the US hit in the moody composition of the photo.

A Christmas Carol Goes Wrong

This comedy is a sequel to last year’s Peter Pan Goes Wrong. It involves the supposed-hijacking of the Christmas schedule by the BBC. Could be one to look out for.

300 Years of French and Saunders

As alluded to above, two of the nation’s favourite comediennes return to our screens for a special 30th anniversary celebration of their comedy partnership together. Expect clips from the likes of The Vicar of Dibley and Absolutely Fabulous. We think this will drop on Boxing Day.

Our Friend Victoria – Christmas Special

Celebrating the life of Victoria Wood, this festive treat looks at some of the late stars many hilarious clips, and speaks to those people who worked with her during her long and distinguished career.

Mrs Brown’s Boys – Christmas AND New Year’s Specials

There will be two seasonal specials airing over the festive period, one on Christmas Day and the other likely to go out on New Year’s Day.

Michael McIntyre’s Big Christmas Show

The annual star-studded festive show returns, with big laughs and big surprises guaranteed. Recorded in London’s West End with a live theatre audience, you can expect to see music from Seal and comedy from Michael himself and Bill Bailey.

Not Going Out – Christmas Special

Lee Mack and Sally Bretton star in this festive special of the hit BBC One show. It’s Christmas Eve, and disaster is about to strike. A late night shopping trip anyone?

Still Open All Hours

Christmas time arrives in the nation’s most famous and adorned corner shops. But with many of the locals looking to leave town at Christmas, will Granville be left at the mercy of Mrs Featherstone’s amorous advances?

Tim Vine Travels Through Time Christmas Special

Tim Vine travels back to Christmas of yesteryear – Tudor times to be precise.

Even Better Than The Real Thing

Paddy McGuinness arrives on BBC One with this fun-sounding Christmas show. Set on a festive stage, it’s essentially a competition between five of the best tribute acts in the world, each singing Christmas songs made famous by their heroes.

Pointless Celebrities Christmas Special

Christmas Jumpers, tinsel, poor puns and a whole minibus full of pointless celebrities. It could only be the Pointless Christmas Special.

Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special

Hot off the heels of the Strictly final, the Christmas Special of Strictly this year will go out on Christmas Day, probably around 6:30pm. The likes of Colin Jackson, Judy Murray, Robbie Savage and Jeremy Vine will all feature.

Top of the Pops Christmas Special

It was once a Friday night staple, but it’s sometime since Top of the Pops (TOTP) was a regular on our screens. It will return this year for Christmas though, and with some big stars. Ed Sheeran, Rita Ora, The Scripe and Dua Lipa among those performing.

Mary Berry’s Christmas Party

Berry is back. Mary Berry invites some of TV’s biggest names in to her kitchen to help prep some sumptuous Christmas dishes!

Mary, Mel and Sue’s Surprise Party

If one helping of Mary Berry isn’t enough, fear not as she returns again with a special Christmas show alongside former Bake Off buddies Mel and Sue. A small community in South Wales that has experienced more than its fair share of tough times have a Christmas to remember as Mary, Mel and Sue turn up and organise the greatest Christmas party ever seen in that part of the world.


The League of Gentleman Anniversary Special

A Christmas reunion for the much-loved comedy show The League of Gentleman. The group celebrate its twentieth anniversary for your festive pleasure.

Inside the Factory Christmas Special

Sprout farms, Christmas cake factories and brandy distilleries. All vital cogs in the Christmas machine, and now they will be explored by Gregg Wallace, Cherry Healey and Ruth Goodman as we find out just how some of our festive treats arrive at our tables each year.

Nigella’s Christmas Table

Nigella is out in the countryside preparing our favourite festive treats for a thrilling Christmas party. Expect delivery of the style only Nigella can achieve.

The Reindeer Family and Me

Wildlife cameraman Gordon Buchanan travels to the frozen north to meet the people, deep inside the Arctic Circle, and find out about their relationship with an animal synonymous with Christmas – the reindeer.

The Sweet Makers at Christmas

If you want to know how all of your old-fashioned festive treats are made, then the team of modern-day confectioners will show you how. Candy canes, yule logs and sugar mice should all feature as the team from the early 2017 series The Sweet Makers return for a Christmas special.