S4C is marking its 25th anniversary on 1 November with a raft of special programmes, new series and new services.
A two-part history of Welsh language broadcasting, special editions of established favourites and classic films and comedies feature in the line-up.
The anniversary sees the launch of two major new series, Y Pris and Casa Dudley, plus a revamped children's presentation service and new-look weather bulletins.
The Channel will also introduce 10 new on-screen identities as part of its re-branding initiative.
The anniversary season begins on Friday, 26 October, with the broadcasting of film Cymer dy Siâr, based on the popular drama series, Tair Chwaer.
Birth of S4C
A two-part documentary, Teledu’r Cymry, (30 October and 6 November) will look at the history of Welsh language broadcasting, from the pioneering days of the 1950s to the establishment of S4C in 1982 and the challenges of the digital multi-channel world.
Gripping new 13-part drama series Y Pris follows the tangled lives of a group of west Walian gangsters and stars Philip Madoc, Matthew Gravelle, Nia Roberts and Rhodri Meilir. The series starts on 31 October.
A new cookery series, Casa Dudley, starting on 4 November, follows eight amateur chefs to Umbria in Italy as they undertake culinary challenges under the watchful eye of top chef Dudley Newbery.
From Monday, 29 October, S4C is launching its new-look children’s presentation links, Planed Plant and Planed Plant Bach, with new presenters Geraint Hardy and Meleri Williams and Rachael Solomon and Gareth Delve. The new-look slots will have a strong interactive element.
S4C is also introducing a refreshed weather service, with a new presenting line-up and new graphics.
A season of special editions of S4C favourites will also be broadcast to mark the anniversary:
• Fashion series Cwpwrdd Dillad ( 2 November) looks at the wardrobes of presenters Beti George, Elinor Jones and her daughter Heledd Cynwal and entertainer Dewi Pws – all familiar faces on S4C over the past quarter of a century.
• Homes and interiors show 04 Wal (31 October) visits the set of new Welsh language film, Martha Jac a Sianco, based on Caryl Lewis’ award-winning novel. The programme will also feature the favourite room of S4C Chief Executive, Iona Jones and S4C’s new-look reception and public areas at its Cardiff HQ.
• Twenty-five years of S4C’s iconic countryside series Cefn Gwlad (2 November), presented by Dai Jones, will be celebrated in a special edition.
• Dechrau Canu Dechrau Canmol, S4C’s worship and hymn-singing series, will mark the birthday with a service of thanksgiving on 4 November.
• Oscar-nominated Hedd Wyn will be broadcast on 28 October.
• A retro comedy half hour slot will also start on Thursday evenings within the next few
Ten new on-screen idents will also be unveiled to coincide with the anniversary. Using bespoke, state-of-the-art technology, the idents will be animated in tune with the individual announcer’s voice.
Filmed at locations across Wales, the idents form part of S4C’s new brand identity, launched in January this year and integrated across all on-air, off-air and online activities.
Iona Jones, S4C’s Chief Executive, said, “Since SuperTed helped open S4C’s schedule on 1 November 1982, the Channel has grown from strength to strength.
“S4C started as a three-year experiment broadcasting 22 hours a week of Welsh language programming. Today, S4C now broadcasts over 80 hours of programmes per week, which are available on different platforms throughout the UK and beyond.
“We’re delighted to mark this special anniversary with a raft of exciting programming and initiatives, which reflect the Channel’s creative ambition as we look to the digital future.”
The British Film Institute (BFI) will also screen a season of S4C programmes at Chapter Arts Centre in Cardiff.
An international conference to mark the first 25 years of broadcasting by S4C is being held at the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth on 2-3 November. The conference is being organised by the National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth University and Mercator.