Gripping stories which shed light on our past and present are at the heart of S4C’s autumn schedule, which features a range of favourites and brand new series.
Among those favourites are popular faces Alwyn Humphreys, Dai Jones, Dudley Newbery, Daloni Metcalfe, Nia Parry, Ifor ap Glyn, Iolo Williams and John Ogwen.
Alwyn presents a new series of hymn-singing programme Dechrau Canu Dechrau Canmol, which visits all four corners of Wales, bringing moving personal testaments and inspiring music to viewers.
Dai is a judge on Fferm Ffactor, a series which gives Wales’ brightest farming talents the chance to compete for the Best Farmer 2009 title and a brand new 4x4 vehicle. Daloni, a member of the Ffermio farming programme team, will present the series, with Professor Wynne Jones, Principal of Harper Adams University College, also judging.
Chef Dudley Newbery heads for Ireland in Tigh Dudley, where he co-presents a new series of his cookery competition alongside Emma Walford.
Fashion and clothes show, Cwpwrdd Dillad, is back with Nia Parry at the helm. Nia also co-presents travel quiz show 0 ond 1 with Morgan Jones.
Poet and author Ifor ap Glyn is off on his travels in Popeth ar Ffilm. He’ll be visiting communities across Wales, showing archive film about a particular area before producing a new short film, made with the help of local people.
In Cwm Sâl Cwm Iach, Iolo Williams challenges three families from the South Wales Valleys to change their lifestyles. Healthy eating, taking regular exercise and giving bad habits a miss is the aim.
In four-part series Y Cleddyf gyda John Ogwen, actor John Ogwen charts the history of the sword, from prehistoric times to the golden age of Hollywood. Welsh stars Ioan Gruffudd and Matthew Rhys are among the series’ contributors.
A number of one-off documentaries are also among S4C’s autumn programme highlights.
Ffion Hague presents Dwy Wraig Lloyd George, which looks at the politician’s relationship with his first wife, Margaret Owen, and his mistress, Frances Stevenson, who became his second wife.
The ‘Welsh Titanic’ – the shipwreck of the Royal Charter in 1859 off the coast of Anglesey – is the subject of a programme presented by author and producer Bedwyr Rees, who has a family connection with the disaster.
Portrayals of the historian Hywel Teifi Edwards, politician Ann Clwyd and the musical maestro Islwyn Evans, head of Ysgol Gerdd Ceredigion music school, are among the other factual programmes.
Six different pilgrimages are the subject of Y Daith, a series discussing the meaning of religion in the modern world. One of the journeys is presenter Jason Mohammad’s first ‘Hajj’, the pilgrimage to Mecca and the holy places associated with the Prophet Muhammad.
Antur Waunfawr, a centre near Caernarfon established to provide work for adults with learning disabilities, celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, and a short documentary series Antur Waunfawr looks at the centre’s history.
Later this year, a new drama filmed in Llandudno, Blodau, will be broadcast. The series, set in a florist’s shop, introduces new faces to S4C, including Rhian Blythe, who last year won the best actress prize at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival for her role in the powerful stage play Deep Cut.
Second series of comedy drama Ista’nbwl, chat show Tudur Owen o’r Doc, Bro, which visits different Welsh communities, and Cofio, which combines studio chat with archive footage, return. There’ll be new series of Mastermind Plant Cymru, entertainment show Noson Lawen, gardening lifestyle series Byw yn yr Ardd and discussion series Pawb a’i Farn, while S4C’s peak-hour favourites – magazine programme Wedi 7, news in Newyddion and daily soap Pobol y Cwm - continue.
In the world of sport, domestic and international football continue in Sgorio Cymru and Sgorio, with an exclusive broadcast of Liechtenstein v Wales. There’ll be a choice of mid-week sport, including golfing series Golffio and rallying in Ralïo+, with all the excitement of the new rugby season shown every Saturday night at 6.00pm.
There will also be some changes to the schedule. Magazine show Mosgito becomes part of the Planed Plant children’s slot, while youth entertainment programme Uned 5 moves to a new 12.30pm Sunday slot.
It will also be possible to enjoy a selection of programmes from S4C’s rich archive in the weekday 6.00pm-7.00pm slot, dubbed ‘Awr Aur’ (Golden Hour). Hel Straeon, Mil o Alwadau, Almanac, Gwyn a’i Fyd and Brodyr Bach are among the highlights.
S4C’s Director of Commissioning, Rhian Gibson, said, “As digital switchover gathers pace in Wales, it is more important than ever that S4C provides a varied, high-quality service.
“A good story is vital in every genre and that’s the basis for this autumn’s programming. We have a strong schedule with plenty of variety. The emphasis is firmly on broadcasting definitive, entertaining series during peak hours – S4C’s shop window.”