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3 hours
First broadcast:
Wednesday 24 December 2008

Presented by John Humphrys and Sarah Montague.

Former minister Chris Leslie says council offered mortgages would help borrowers keep the housing market afloat.

GP and women's health expert Dr Sarah Jarvis has attacked a pilot scheme that would allow pharmacists to give women the contraceptive pill without a prescription.

Army officers in the West African state of Guinea have staged a coup attempt, but civilian and military leaders say they failed to overthrow the government. Alex Vines, head of the Africa Programme at Chatham House, says the instability could impact heavily on the whole region.

Rev David Wiley, chaplain of Royal Marines' 3 Commando Brigade in Helmand reflects on Christmas for soldiers in Afghanistan.

The Bishop of Liverpool joins religious commentator Theo Hobson to discuss the purpose served by the Church.

A Christian website has mounted a campaign against what it claims is a surreptitious attempt to change the words of Christmas carols to make them more politically correct. Robert Pigott has been studying the corrected lyrics.

Thought for the day with Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor.

Alan Rusbridger, editor of The Guardian and Andreas Whittam Smith, the first editor of The Independent, discuss what 2009 might have in store for print journalism.

The Today programme has reconvened a group of ordinary consumers from Watford to discuss how they see the next year unfolding. Six of the original 12, who met John Humphrys back in October, discuss how they see the economic downturn unfolding in 2009.

Professor John Curtice is an expert on voting and has some sage advice for the producers of the BBC's Strictly Come Dancing.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu has said the international community should consider using force to get rid of the Zimbabwean leader, President Mugabe.

Aleem Maqbool has reached Bethlehem, having retraced the journey made by Joseph and Mary 2,000 years ago.

Economists Jim O'Neill and Liam Halligan discuss the government's decision to borrow and try to get us to keep spending during the economic crisis.

British troops in Iraq are preparing for their last Christmas in Basra, as the forces will withdraw by July next year. Caroline Wyatt speaks to two of them, a father and son in the Queen's Royal Hussars.

Cognitive Neuropsychologist Dr David Lewis and political commentator Tony Howard consider the importance of physique to a politician or businessman.


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