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BBC Scotland unveils launch programming

Drama, Arts, Current Affairs: the BBC has provided a sample of what's to come on the new TV channel for Scotland.

The channel will launch on Sunday 24th February 2019 and be available on all major TV platforms in Scotland, as well as UK wide on satellite and iPlayer. The channel has a budget of £32million this year.

Four-part drama Guilt heads the launch line-up, from the award-winning Scottish writer of Eric, Ernie And Me, Neil Forsyth. Directed by Robbie McKillop (Cleaning Up, Clique), it stars Mark Bonnar (Shetland, Line Of Duty, Catastrophe) and Jamie Sives (Game Of Thrones, The Victim, In The Dark) as two brothers whose lives are thrown into disarray after they accidentally run over and kill an old man while driving home from a wedding. After making the panicked decision to cover their tracks, the brothers seem to get away with their crime.

However, as neighbours and relatives of the dead man begin to suspect his death wasn’t as innocent as it initially seemed, the brothers find their lives rapidly falling apart, as their actions begin to catch up with them. Their increasingly desperate attempts to conceal their guilt lead them further into a world where everyone seems to have a hidden agenda and they discover they can trust no-one, ultimately including each other.

The drama will premiere on BBC Scotland, before being screened across the UK on BBC Two later in the year.

In arts, Emeli Sandé’s Street Symphony sees the multi-award winning singer-songwriter travel across Scotland to find the nation’s finest untapped musical talent and orchestrate a concert quite unlike any other. Over four programmes, Emeli sets off from her home town of Alford, near Aberdeen, and heads to Inverness, Dundee, Glasgow and Edinburgh to hand-pick her five favourite street performers. After honing their acts to perfection, the artists will be joined by the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra - and Emeli - to give an inspirational and emotional performance at the City Halls in Glasgow.

Other highlights include eight-part documentary series The Children’s Hospital, about The Royal Aberdeen Children’s Hospital, and Children Of The Devolution, which sees journalist and broadcaster Allan Little embark on a journey across Scotland meeting families who include people in their 20s, 40s and 60s to look at how their lives have been shaped by the creation of the Scottish Parliament over the last 20 years.

Inside Central Station is a six-part series about the people behind the busiest railway station in Scotland; Getting Hitched Asian Style is a behind-the-scenes look at Scotland’s biggest Asian wedding planners; A View From The Terrace promises to offer a weekly sideways glance at Scottish football adapted from the cult fan-led podcast The Terrace.

"The Nine" will be BBC Scotland TV's flagship news programme. Image: BBC

Nightly news hour The Nine and a Question Time-style debate series from Scotland head up the current affairs offering. New output is joined by established programmes including comedy Still Game and current BBC Two-opt out programming.

Steve Carson, BBC Scotland’s Head of Multi-Platform Commissioning, says: 
We’ve been working with more than 70 suppliers across the creative sector to help fulfil our vision for the new BBC Scotland channel - a channel for modern Scotland with quality, compelling content. 
Across the genres - from documentaries, drama, news, sport, comedy and entertainment programmes - BBC Scotland will reflect the lives and interests of Scottish audiences on screen.

Donalda MacKinnon, Director of BBC Scotland, says: 
The excitement over the new channel has been building, and by unveiling some of our key programmes today viewers will get a more detailed idea of what they can expect to see. Our commissioning team has curated an ambitious and engaging schedule aimed at reflecting Scotland in the 21st century, while satisfying our appetite to see the best of what’s on offer from around the rest of the world.