October Programme Information
From Belfast to Dachau
One east Belfast man's remarkable journey back into his past
"The first thing we encountered was
the smell. A horrible, terrible smell.
Then, as we approached the camp
along the railway line, we discovered
the endless boxcars full of rotting
corpses. This was Dachau."
- Teddy Dixon
Teddy Dixon spent the first two years of
the Second World War working as an air-raid
warden, walking the streets of his
beloved Belfast, ensuring lights were out and
Then he received a letter
from America which was to change his life
forever, calling him up to report for duty
with the US Army.
Within weeks, Teddy Dixon was transformed
from a young lad on Belfast's Cregagh Road
to GI Edward Dixon, F Company, 42nd
Rainbow Division, or just plain 'Irish', as
he was known to his American comrades-in-arms.
It was the start of a remarkable journey
which took Teddy into combat in France and
Germany and to Dachau concentration
camp, the full horror of which he was among
the first to discover.
Today, at home in east Belfast, these haunting
memories live on, still waking him at night.
However, Teddy was to embark on two more
remarkable and emotional journeys. The first
to a reunion in June 2004 with the American
buddies he fought alongside but has not seen
since 1946; and the second, back to Dachau
in April of this year, for the first time since
the end of the war.
Teddy hoped these journeys would bring him
peace of mind.
His journeys were filmed for this powerful
landmark documentary by DoubleBand
Films for BBC NI to mark the year of the
60th anniversary of the end of the war in
From Belfast to Dachau is due to be
broadcast in October.
Love and Loss
Belfast man Kieran Creagh's passionate crusade to
help AIDS patients in South Africa
He was born in Belfast and worked
as a bank official in Bangor. But
several years ago, 43-year-old Kieran
Creagh swapped a life of bank drafts
and lodgments for the priesthood.
was a decision that has taken him to
a township outside Pretoria, South
Africa, where today he runs a hospice
for AIDS patients.
As Love and Loss: My African Journey reveals,
Kieran Creagh is no ordinary priest.
passionate and charismatic man who rages
against an unsympathetic world and the
hierarchy of the church. His strong
convictions are born out of the suffering he
witnesses every day.
In the township where
he lives and works, up to 40 per cent of
young adults are infected with HIV and AIDS.
In the one year since he opened the
Leratong Hospice, Kieran has seen more than 140
Love and Loss: My African Journey is the
inspirational story of one Belfast man's brave
attempt to bring hope and dignity to a
people in crisis.
The documentary reveals
Kieran's day-to-day work in the hospice and
township, and explores his controversial
views on issues such as contraception.
follows him as he takes part in the
experimental trial of a new vaccine aimed
at combating the spread of AIDS, having
become the first man in Africa to be injected
with the serum.
The documentary has been produced by
DoubleBand Film Productions and is due to
be shown in October.
From boys to men
Five self-confessed mummy's boys are turned into real men
Mummy's Boys is a fun new factual
entertainment series for BBC ONE
Northern Ireland, taking five life-long 'Mummy's Boys' and turning them into
The series gathers up five of the laziest, scruffiest and slobbiest men from every
corner of Northern Ireland.
Can their mentors - psychologist Fergus and
army sergeant Aileen - turn them around in
just six weeks?
Fergus and Aileen mercilessly reveal their
shortcomings, expose their deepest
insecurities and challenge them at everything
from ironing and speed-dating to surviving the
deep dark forests of Slovenia and organising
a nude charity calendar shoot.
Will hairdresser Craig find his own home,
at last? Can farmer Sam ever find the nerve
to get a date? Will rugby player Alan try to
take risks off the pitch? Is Michael Barlow
ever going to get off the couch? Will Derek
from Enniskillen finally buy his own
And what will their mummies think?
Mummy's Boys is an entertaining look at a
social phenomenon particular to Northern
Ireland – the grown-up man who still
depends on his mother; it's a series that
makes serious points about modern
The series has been produced by Extreme
Production and will be shown in October.
Autumn on BBC Northern Ireland
The Day the Music Died
The story of the Miami Showband tragedy and its
impact on the music industry
In the early hours of 31 July 1975, the
Miami Showband were attacked by a
UVF gang after returning from a gig
at the Castle Ballroom in Banbridge.
The murders of lead singer Fran O'Toole,
Brian McCoy and Anthony Geraghty
shocked Ireland north and south.
With exclusive interviews with the surviving
band members - Steve Travers, Des Lee, and
Ray Miller - along with contributors including
Gerry Anderson and Fr Brian Darcy, The Day
the Music Died marks the 30th anniversary
of the attack in telling the story of the
Miami Showband, and how the survivors have lived with the tragedy that took the
lives of their friends.
The documentary also looks at the dramatic
impact the tragedy had on the music
industry across Ireland at the time.
The Day the Music Died is produced by
DoubleBand Films and is due to be broadcast
A God Given Gift
The inspiring story of a young Portadown dancer
At just seven years of age, Portadown-born
Leigh Alderson pulled on his first
pair of ballet pumps and told his
mother he wanted to go to dance
There was just something
about it he found fulfilling, intoxicating
Since then he hasn't stoped
dancing, securing a highly coveted
place at the world famous Royal Ballet
School in London.
In A God Given Gift...The Leigh Alderson
Story, a BBC Northern Ireland documentary
team follows Leigh through one of his most challenging periods at the Royal.
Graduating to the final year is tough and
gruelling. Not everyone makes it. Can Leigh
find the inner resources to make it through
to the next critical stage in his career: the
performance year when world class dance
companies come in search of the next superstars of the ballet world?
With the help of documentary footage shot
several years ago, the programme plots this
young Portadown man's journey from
childhood to adulthood.
Flashbacks to Leigh's early dancing classes
in Portadown and Lisburn reveal his
unswerving passion for dance.
All is not plain sailing, as a perfectionist Leigh
challenges himself as much as his
adjudicators. His devotion and passion for
dance is not in doubt but he is also his own
A God Given Gift...The Leigh Alderson Story
has been produced by Clare Delargy and is due to be broadcast in October.
Resolute to the end
Brent goose makes its epic journey back to these shores
It was Kendrew Colhoun, the Project
Leader on Supergoose, who spotted
him - Resolute, one of the six 'supergeese', flying among a small
flock of Brent geese away up in the
Devon Island, where Resolute was filmed, is
the largest uninhabited island in the world,
just a few hundred miles from the North
From the satellite readings, Kendrew knew that two birds, Resolute and Espie,
were close together in this area. After weeks
of fog, wind and rain the weather suddenly
cleared to allow for a helicopter trip to try
and locate them.
Kendrew, presenter Darryl
Grimason and cameraman Michael Quinn,
flew for several hours from their base on
Cornwallis Island over a vast landscape of
islands and ice fields.
The helicopter had to
re-fuel at a remote air strip and the pilot
was about to turn back when Kendrew made
the crucial sighting.
The pilot was able to fly alongside the flock
and Michael Quinn filmed the crucial footage
of Resolute in flight, the tiny transmitter
clearly visible on his back - an incredible
This will be just one of the highlights of Supergoose – the Return, produced by
Yamal Productions, due to be shown on BBC
ONE NI in October.
Autumn on BBC Northern Ireland
Poignant documentary reveals some of the
remarkable untold stories of evacuation
During the Second World War,
thousands of children were evacuated
from Belfast, separated from their
families and their familiar city streets
to live with strangers in the
Many of these evacuees did not know where
they were going, nor for how long.
thing was certain - the experience would
change the children's lives forever.
On the 60th anniversary of the end of
the war, The Evacuees is a poignant
documentary revealing the remarkable
untold stories of those evacuated to the
It has been produced by DoubleBand Films
and due to be broadcast in October.