Nick Knowles and Julia Bradbury present a show about modern Britain, with features on the National Grid, overcrowded trains and good Samaritans. Plus the country's worst roadworks.
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Hello and welcome to That's Britain, the show that gets to grips with
all the daily irritations of modern life. We will get to the bottom of
whatever is winding you up and try to make Britain a better place, or
at least turn some of those premises into grins. On That's
Britain tonight, May looks at overcrowded trains and the high
ticket prices we pay. Lastly, you told us dog poo was a problem -
tonight, the Bin Cops on the case. Stan Lee Johnson celebrates human
kindness with a hidden camera shopping stinger. And Ade Edmondson
goes behind the scenes of the National Grid to see how power gets
to the people. Joining us is are talented team of supporters.
Grainne Seoige, Stanley, Stephen K Amos and Stanley. Good looking
bunch. Stephen has been up at the crack of dawn for That's Britain to
persuade us to save the endangered species that is the British milkman.
But can he convince you to pay more for your daily pint to put an old
men or women are back on your street? Most importantly, we want
to hear from you. On this show, your words count, because this is
your word wall. It often feels like you are talking to a wall, but on
That's Britain, the wall talks Back. Tell us what is driving you around
the bend, and our magic wall takes your words and turns them into a BT.
If a word is big, it means a lot of you are complaining about it.
want to know what is annoying you - mobile ringtones, cold calls, get
it off your chest and on to our wall. At the end of last week's
show, this is what you were irritated by. Tube drivers, litter,
Bob Prew. The opera was massive. Not a massive one, obviously -- dog
poo was massive. Public-transport. Grainne Seoige will be tapping
trains in a bit. This week, over the past seven days, over 4000 of
you have been e-mailing us. Let's look at your moans and groans right
now. Not a huge surprise about petrol prices. Osborne has frozen
fuel duty this week. 60% of the price of your petrol is it in fact
on tax. Increasingly, it is becoming more expensive to own and
run a car, �3,000 a year. What surprises me is what is not on the
wall. It has been a day of public sector service strikes, and it does
not even make the wall. Why? Maybe people have not got home because of
the strikes. But weirdly, wind turbines have made the wall. You
are complaining about the fuel prices, but you do not like the
alternatives. And who is upset by wind chimes? I do not like them.
You don't have to write in about it. And stolen horses. I do not know
what is going on there. Enlighten us about what is going on with
stolen horses. We will be updating the wall later, so keep those e-
Remember to put the thing that is getting on your wick in the title
of the e-mail. And tell us about it in the body of the e-mail. And no
people's names, please. Somebody did just put "my wife" last week!
You can join in with everything we are talking about by tweeting us.
Or going to our Facebook page. As the country that invented the
railway, you might think we would be good at it. But some who
travelled regularly on the Great British Railway will tell you that
sardines have an easier time of it. With British Rail fares among the
highest in the world and set to increase by 6.2%, Grainne Seoige
travelled cattle class to find out if anything can be done about it.
No one usually gets seats. It is always crammed. People fight for
seats. It becomes carnage. I never get a seat. There is nothing to
hold on to. People have to grab hold of strangers and say sorry.
Our British National Rail network was the first in the world, and
they used to say "let the train take the strain". But now commuters
are taking the strain. Passenger numbers are up 40% on ten years ago,
and ticket prices are among the highest in the world. To many of
these people, commuting by train is their only option, not a luxury. It
is the only way to get from A to B. So they stand cheek by jowl on
overcrowded routes. And the busiest areas on the network outside London
are commuter lines into and Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds.
Passengers on the Hosford to Leeds route know this story well.
Commuters regularly stand on half of the rush-hour trains into Leeds.
Richard Gregory has been travelling this route for ten years, but now
he has kids, it is not just him that is affected. Sometimes I can't
physically get on the train because it is so full. If I can't get on
the train, I can't pick my kids up in time and then I have a problem.
The effect of not being able to get on a train is huge. Another
passenger who is up against it in the North is Cassie. There is no
real ventilation in the carriages. It gets really hot and airless. A
lot of the time in the mornings, you feel faint. I have seen other
women faint as well, which is why I complained to the train company. I
thought it was unsafe. Cassie complained to the company via a
transport pressure group, but they did not respond. As she pays �130 a
month for her ticket, she is not impressed. Everyone on this train
pays at least �130 if they are getting a season ticket. If you
multiply that by the number of people on the train, it is a lot of
money. Money is what they care about. Across the board, a lot of
money is being made by our rail companies. Last year, operating
profits were an eye-watering �200 million. Plus this January, ticket
prices are going up by up to 6.2%. A recent YouGov poll found that the
planned fare hikes for 2012 were the most unpopular policy
announcement from the government's combines a spending review, opposed
by eight out of ten people. And what you get for your ticket as is
a space on a train, not a seat. Unlike buses or planes, there are
no legal limits on how much space you are given. In fact, livestock
are more regulated. All livestock transportation must meet EU rules.
These cover how much space cattle, sheep and pigs would get on a train.
Sadly, there is nothing for humans. I did not realise that. Shocking.
It does not seem fair. That is wrong. It is an animal! OK, so
there is no legal limit. But surely the train operators should take
responsibility? Or can't they just add more carriages to a train?
Christian while Ma is Britain's leading transport commentator.
cost the industry is so fragmented, it is difficult for the train
operating company just to get some extra carriages. They need
permission from the Government and they have to pay the money. They
probably need more subsidy. It is not just a matter of buying a few
more carriages. Essentially, it is likely to cost extra money to put
on these carriages on these overcrowded trains. So it is really
down to the Government to put up the funds. We asked a river trains
Wales and Northern trains for an interview, but they declined, as
did the national body representing the rail industry, the Association
of Train Operating Companies. So I am going to see the Minister for
the railways to see what she has to say about jammed trains and sky-
high prices. We have met some very unhappy people and put up with
serious overcrowding. The first thing we were amazed to learn was
that there is no limit on the amount of people you can pack onto
trains. Trains are designed to be safe, whatever levels of crowding
are taking place. We were speaking to various passengers, and one told
us a train was so packed that people faint. We have plans for
around 2700 new carriages on the railways over the coming years to
respond to people's concerns, including into our cities in the
north, like Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle. But when Theresa
Villiers was on the opposition benches, she challenged the then
Labour government about rail passengers travelling in worse
conditions than livestock. What about the fact that you have said
yourself that livestock get treated better than people? It is essential
that we get a grip on crowding. That is why we are undertaking the
biggest programme of rare capacity expansion since the Victorian era.
But when you consider that a sheep or a cow or a goat gets treated
better on a train than a person...? You are pushing at an open door. I
understand the problems. The government is determined to do
something. People pay a lot of money to travel on these trains.
There is a commitment that those train fares will increase for the
next few years. The fares are a vitally important way to fund our
railways and fund improvements that are needed. It seems that no one is
happy with the current state of affairs, so what can train
passengers do to make sure these promises are delivered? Rail
passengers have to get themselves organised. They have to form
commuter groups, complain and badger their MP. Badger Ministers.
Then something might get done. It is a matter of putting pressure run.
There is a lot to talk about after watching that. How much of a
squeeze was it? The it depends on the amount of pigs. They get a
fairer deal than we do. I had to stand from Horsforth to Leeds.
There were no seats. We were packed into the corners of the train, but
it was not as uncomfortable as other people's experiences. I was
not gasping for air. But I had no seat. Richard Gregory, one of the
passengers, has a bad day regularly, because he cannot get onto the
train because of overcrowding, which affects his life because of
childcare issues. What in Northern trains say about that? As you say,
Richard has a genuine complaint. Northern rail said, we have worked
hard with industry partners to provide more trains to meet rising
demand. The latest additions will be in service from December.
Additional carriages will provide more seats in the Leeds area. So
hopefully hundreds of parents will get their kids on time. What about
Cassie, who had a complaint about the Welsh train company? She did
not complain directly to them. She complained after a pressure group
online, petitioning. So they told her and asked that "we don't accept
complaints from third parties". She should contact them directly.
do they say are on the general point about passengers fainting?
They say regarding fainting allegations that there is no direct
link between feinting and train overcrowding. Passengers should
seek trained staff help. We heard from the minister Theresa Villiers
as well. The government are feeling the heat about this, and George
Osborne has capped the train price increase at 6.2%. But that is still
above inflation and people are still making complaints. It was
meant to be inflation plus 3%, and now it is inflation plus 1%, which
is good news for passengers. But in the context of overcrowding, they
are very high prices anyway. And people are enduring pay freezes or
pay cuts, so it is still tough. What do operating companies make of
it? They said the average rise in regulated fares, including season
tickets, is set by the Government and nothing to do with them. The
money raised through fares helps pay for more carriages to deal with
the overcrowding. But those carriages will not be here tomorrow.
2019. Rolling stock is the big deal. It is just not simple. But there is
a glimmer of hope for people in London. There will be 48 more
carriages in and out of London in time for the Olympics. If you are
not a happy camper today, what is the best way to complain? They all
respond in such different ways. People should definitely club
together. If there are enough unhappy people, pressure does win
out. But if you want your complaint answered by the train company, you
must contact them directly, otherwise you will have what
happened here. What are you doing next week? Hospital parking charges,
APPLAUSE That's Britain has been trying to
bring back people who were once the cornerstones of communities. Last
week a massive 81% of viewers voted said they would pay back higher bus
fares to bring back the conductor. Can Stephen K Amos persuade you
that we should pay more for our cow juice to bring the milkman book to
our doorsteps? Breakfast, the most important meal
of the day. Got my croissants, coffee, cereal. Oh, no! I have run
out of milk! Where am I going to get milk at this time of the
morning? The local supermarket? The petrol station?
Oh, hang on, I think I know just the man.
Before the supermarket shop there was the milkman. By the 1960s he
had swapped his horse and cart for the electric float. In the 1970s
nine out of ten of us had milk delivered. By 2000 that had dropped
to one in four. In the last ten years almost two out of three milk
rounds have trickled away. These days we are always carping on about
convenience. But what can be more convenient than having a pint of
milk brought to you first thing in the morning, delivered by a
friendly face, the pillar of the local community and not just the
Butt of horrible cheap jokes. Milkman are not the punchline to
the question who is your real dad? It's 5.00am, I have to go and join
Graham. He has been working for three hours already. I am a bit
slack. Come on. Graham is one of Britain's 4,000
remaining milkmen and he has been getting up early for 24 years. So,
who who pwrb pwrb better to help me in my mission to motivate Britain
and persuade them he is a tradition worth keeping. This is number one.
There we go. So, that's my first delivery. How
hard can it be?! Did you remember the empties, Stephen?
It's not all about the milk these days. Graham's diversified. Next
one is cat food. Cat food? I remember a milkman just delivered
milk. Cat food! A long time ago. And it's about going the extra mile
for your customers, whatever the weather. There's other deliveries
can't get here, but Graham always does. The milk is is there in the
morning. You can't always get out and do the shopping and that, and
he fills that gap. So, clearly Graham's customers are willing and
able to pay for his services, but what about the neighbours who
aren't on a milk round? How do they feel about getting a pint delivered
daily. I am going to find out even if it curdles me.
Good morning! We stopped the delivery because when I was working
full-time the milk used to stand on the doorstep all day. Would you
reconsider being a new customer? would possibly consider it, yes.
That's only a maybe. Having your milk delivered with cost anything
between 30p extra per pint. Is it the money? Is it a cost element for
you? I guess, obviously you do pay extra. I just don't think about it
because when I do my shopping it's so easy to pop and get it. I would
like to ask more people, but where is everyone? Maybe there's a clue
here. The milk didn't get delivered until after we had gone to work.
see. Then it would sit on the doorstep all day. Will anyone join
me?! Never see them any more, do you? Graham should knock on my door
and I will definitely sign him up as my milkman. Finally, I found
one! It's been a long day. There's still a lot of love out there for
the idea of a milkman. I just wish more of us realised he's got the
white stuff. Graham, baby, how fast does this thing go! They call him
Stephen, Stevie, he drove the fastest milk cart in the west!
APPLAUSE. And straight from his round Stephen
is here. Now, somebody told me you got up at 3.00am to do that. Yes, a
standup comic, I never ever got up in the morning. You are normally
coming in. After a show, yeah. But Graham, he was such a jolly milkman.
A quarter of a century he's been getting up early. How early does he
get up? 1.00am. To do his round. years. Did you enjoy the process?
No! My eyes were red. I was like I can't see! I have respect for
milkmen, postmen, those guys that get up early to deliver a service.
Isn't the point that we have outgrown the milkman, we don't need
them any more? I think we do. Think back to school and we got that
bottle of milk, that set you up for the day. You see the friendly
milkman driving past. My mum used to love leaving him notes, I love
you! Or something. They are just pillars of the community. We have
24-hour shops now, you pick up milk on the way home at the garage.
There's other ways to get milk. Because we have moved on, I mean
look how many of our high streets look the same. All these big
supermarkets they've lost - they've taken over. The independent grocers,
the milk, butchers, Bakers, the candle-stick makers, they're all
going out of business. You are grasping at straw. Supermarkets
deliver now. All these supermarkets, they don't get that personal touch.
How often have you ordered from the supermarket and they get it wrong?
You can guarantee the milkman is not going to go, I haven't the milk
but here is a pork pie. That's not going to happen. Here is the key
question, is it better for the milkman - better for the dairy
producers if you use a milkman? People don't realise is that the
dairy producers, the farmers, they don't sell direct to the
supermarkets. There's a middleman. Therefore, the supermarket which
buys in bulk control the pricing. If we really want to help our local
communities and the local producers and pay extra then who knows, maybe
our high streets can go back to the way they were. I have to say, you
presented a very good argument given you don't ever want to do
that that kind of job again. Let's see what the public think. Stephen
K Amos, thank you very much. APPLAUSE.
There you go. So, Stephen says bringing back the milkmen would get
back a sense of community and it's better for the environment and
farmers. Tonight we are asking you this: Would you pay an extra 25p pb
a -- on a pint of milk to have it Lines will be closed at about
For full terms and conditions you can go to our website.
We will bring you the result later on. Will the milkman come back?
Time for the section of the show about stories from around the
country that might make you growl. This is the bit we call Don't Get
Me Started. Lots of you mentioned wind turbines earlier. Those who
aren't fans of windmills decorating parts of Britain will enjoy this. A
report revealed that wind farms are being switched off, or turned down
because they're too noisy for local residents. It sounds reasonable,
except when you realise that the turbines are usually only that
noisy when it's very windy. It seems that there were lots of noise
complaints made about wind farms in the last few years. One farm in
Yorkshire was served with a noise abatement order. If you are
thinking of getting your own private wind farm in your backward
remember, switch it off when it gets windy. LAUGHTER. The next
story that might get you started was this, Derbyshire County Council
are having problems with their electronic bus stop signs T seems
they ordered 43 of the signs to tell passiers how long they'll wait
for the next bus would be. they're looking to use them to find
out, they may have to wait a while because none of them work. Not one.
The council did put up eight of them and they're still in place,
but they still don't work. And how much did this set Derbyshire
council taxpayers back? The cost was a grand total of �340,000 of
which �65,000 came from Derby County Council. A spokesman for the
council told us we made a mistake. We shouldn't have spent the money
on these signs. Lots of things went wrong when we bought this equipment
in 2006, including technical problems and the fact that the bus
operators were unwilling to use the system. They say they will learn
from this. Next a story that got Michael Car from Lanarkshire
started along with many in his areas. He contacted us to say I was
greatly amused by your piece on public money and I gave you neon
waves, I don't know one person who says they like or agree with it. It
may sound nice, the waves are 76 sheets of metal lining the side of
the A8011. But they're not just sheets of metal. Oh, no! They light
up at night. The council describe this as a flowing wave-like effect
to passing traffic. It makes sense when you realise that it means the
meeting of the waters. They do like nicer at night, but it hasn't
impressed Michael and some of his fellow residents. How much do you
think a flowing wave-like effect goes for these days? I put it to
our lovely... Did they get it free from metal thieves? �15.99. They
cost �320,000. The council confirmed that the wave feature
cost around �320,000 as part of a wider rode scheme to improve
approaches to the town. A public consultation was undertaken before
the work and there was general approval. Finally, Warwickshire
County Council have been complaining to us and we think
they've a point. Last week we said they spent �100,000 of council
taxpayers' money on art for the park. They pointed out the money
came from a central Government fund, to be spent on public art. They
just choose the winning design. Apologies and happy to clear that
up. If there cess ago got -- there's something that has got you
started, let us know and tell us. Let's see how you have changed the
wall so far. There it is. Let's take a look.
Petrol prices in the middle. Turbines we already mentioned. What
else have people been telling us? Speed bumps. Politicians. There you
go. Isn't that funny, mentioned it at the beginning and strikes bang
in the middle. We still have energy prices and petrol prices. Horse poo
has made an appearance on the wall. Bankers have turned up. There you
go. Somewhere in there human rights. That's strange. What e-mails?
Petrol prices are making life impossible for people in rural
areas, that's where you are really stuck where there aren't
necessarily buses available. Another says about wind turbines,
there is not an alternative energy. Horse theft is a massive problem,
horses are stolen and little help from the police. It's heartbreaking.
We might look into that. Still to come tonight: The bin cops oren dog
poo parol. We fine out where in Britain has the worst roadworks.
meet the hidden hero whose biggest enemy is the traffic jam.
Ade Edmondson has amazing behind the scenes access to the whole
country and he has been observing how the systems we take for granted
actually work. I can't help but notice that you
are brandishing a new weapon there. I have a new akoutment. How did
that come into being? A tragic DIY accident. Not tragic because you
are still here. I was trying to remove a shelf from the wall and
didn't have the right tools and decided I would jump up and down on
it. It is a very effective method, but worked quicker than I imagined.
Do you do a lot of DIY? Not now. You didn't have this last week.
I didn't. I was stupidly bravely carrying on with it last week and
it's been the wrong thing. Apparently, I should take seven
days off. We can't afford that! Where have you been this week?
like a cup of tea, don't you. a cup of tea. Have you ever
wondered when you switch the kettle on where the electricity comes
from? They go into the kettle, whizz around, stop me if I am being
too technical. I have been to find out how electricity is made and how
it gets to your kettle. Fascinating. You can't see it, you can't smell
it, and if you touch it it really, really hurts. But it's essential to
everyday life. I am going to follow electricity's incredible journey
from power station to plug. Hopefully, there won't be too many
shocks along the way. 74% of our electricity comes from power
stations burning gas and coal. And that's why I have come here, Didcot
power station is one of 108 power stations feeding to the National
Grid and I am going to find out exactly how it works.
Look, I have stumbled upon a set of a James Bond film! They're probably
about to send rockets to Moscow and London and Paris and New York any
minute now. I better check it out. This is the plant's control room
and it's no wonder it looks like the lair of a bond baddy. Some of
this kit has been here since the From here, they monitor the power
station around the clock. How many cups of tea would you say this
generator is capable of making? Over the last five years, we have
produced enough cups of tea for about a trillion people. Any chance
of a cuppa now? Yes. To make that many cups of tea, they need a lot
of coal. This is what 1 million and a half tons of coal looks like.
Didcot power station gets through this amount every 50 days. The
Colley's brought to the top of this building and drops down the shoots
into these blunders and ground into a fine dust and fired into a
furnace. Then it burns quickly. N that VAT, you have the boilers. And
there - my they are providing steam which powers the turbines, which
power the magnets inside the generator and electricity goes that
way. That is one theory. The other theory is that it is magic. But
electricity has a floor, because once it has been created, you can't
storage. It has to be used instantly. This means that someone
has to make sure exactly the right amount of power is in the system at
any time to satisfy demand. The man tasked with this job is Simon, a
national balancing engineer here at the National Grid Control Centre.
Simon watches his screen like a hawk. He can see every major power
connection across the National Grid mapped out in front of him. I have
arrived at the most critical point in his week, when huge surges in
demand can cause mass blackouts. EastEnders is about to end, and
there is going to be a big spike. They could get into trouble. As
soon as the end credits roll on EastEnders, up to 1.5 million
kettles are switched on, causing a massive surge in demand. It is what
is known as a TV pick-up, something unique to our tea-drinking nation.
Simon has to keep the indicator at 50 herds. If levels drop
dangerously, he can switch on Hydro-Electric power stations
hundreds of miles away to deliver a burst of energy in 17 seconds. But
Corrie starts on the other side. So will they bother to get up and have
a cuppa tea? They might order too much electricity. I would not like
to be in your shoes. Panic over. Simon has ordered enough
electricity. We are free to enjoy a post soap Cupper, this time. It is
a vitally important, high pressure job that only the brainiest can do.
Why are they letting me have a go? All right, it is only a simulator,
but it is exciting. This is a simulation of the day of the royal
wedding. Where are we now in terms of the timescale? 12:15pm. Everyone
is on their way back from Westminster Abbey to the palace.
suppose the kiss on the balcony was when everyone was watching. You had
to judge when the snogging was over? Predicting when people will
get bored of watching Royal's wedding on a balcony is harder than
you think, as I soon discover. Why has that redline change? I have not
got a quick enough finger to do this. Armageddon is coming. High
cost alert! The worst thing that can happen at is that everyone's
telly goes off. Oh, dear. I have tried my hand at balancing
electricity, and now for distributing electricity. To do
this, they feed electricity into the national grid. It might look
like a collection of cables, at the National Grid is one of them moder
-- wonders of the modern world. It is held up by thousands of pylons
that carry the high-voltage current thousands of miles across the UK.
Some think they are ugly. And I think they are right. After
travelling hundreds of miles from where it was created, electricity
reaches your local sub-station and is lowered to 220 volts and wired
directly into your home, be it a big city, a small town for a rural
location. So next time you switch on your cattle, you will know the
amazing journey the electricity has taken to make your lovely cup of
tea. And now it is time to pull the plug on this film. Lovely. That was
genuinely enlighten him. So when there is a search, they switch on
other power stations. We were amazed that they could not store
electricity. They literally have to make it according to the present
demand. So everyone puts on the telly, and they have to produce it.
They have to spot any trends that might be coming up. And that is
governed very much by television. When I did that simulation with the
royal wedding, the reason they used that is because there is an unusual
spike in it. When do you think it was? When people lost interest?
the kiss, obviously. It was during the hymns! What a godless nation.
So there is the EastEnders moment. Apparently, we are the only country
in the world that has these surges. In Italy, if they finish watching a
programme, they have some tiramisu or something. Even in summer, when
they are watching the football, they open the fridge to get beer
out and that caused us a power surge as well. I did all right. No,
it went badly wrong. Most of the country right now are complaining
about energy prices. He met one man who is not complaining? I met a man
who has his own Hydro-Electric scheme in his garden in Devon. I do
not know how many kilowatts it makes. He earns about 20 grand a
year feeding electricity back into the grid. He has a special NATO
that goes backwards. -- a spectrometer. He has taken the
stream of a river. Have you not got a river, Julia? Not yet. So you get
reduce and make your own money. Where will you be next week? Next
week, Chris -- Christmas is coming, so I will follow a letter from a
post box in Redhill in Surrey all the way to an obscure Scottish
island. How hard can it be? If only we could post you and see if you
got there. Are you being cruel? Our insider, Ade Edmondson,
everybody. If a complete stranger stopped you
in the street and asked for your help, would you oblige? No. They
might be trying to rob you. Stanley Johnson thinks we are that kind of
nation, and he has been testing the public to prove it. He took his
hidden cameras to Stockport to find out how far we would go to help a
stranger. Today I want to see how many
shoppers in the supermarket will stop and help our actress Jackie
with her long shopping list of things she can't quite reach on the
top shelf. Will people help her load up her basket? Will she get
assistance and the till? Will she get help packing her bags, or will
they just think she is a basket- case? We have cameras hidden all
over the supermarket, letting us see every angle of Jackie's
shopping trip. Let's see how she gets on. Excuse me, could you give
us a hand getting these down? has found somebody. Cornflakes,
could you get us a couple of packets? Thank you. Thanks very
much. Good news, Jackie has another catch. This lady is only a couple
of inches taller. I am of a small size myself! And another. Could you
get us that bottle at the back? I will take two of them. Could you
get the other one? I should have got a trolley. Just how far down
that long shopping list will they go? Excuse me, could you give us we
hand? I am in a bit of a rush. I might have to commandeer your
trolley for two minutes. There are no trollies. Could you get me a
couple of packets of them? Can I stuff it in your trolley? Trolley
sharing, that his novel. I have a couple of heavy items. A couple of
these would be brilliant. If you can manage two, that would be fab.
That is right at the back. Jackie take it a stage further now?
Can she get anyone to actually help her Paco shopping? It will just be
two seconds. I have not done my own yet. Close, but no cigar. Have we
reached the limits of people's generosity? Could you give us a
hand? Did you get us a couple of packets of tissue? That would be
brilliant. And another couple of packets up here. Smashing. Is that
it? No, that is not it. It is on to the drinks now. Get us two. He is
practically Jackie's personal shopper! Right at the back. No, not
that one. What is the difference? want the one with sugar in it.
will he go all the way through to the till? I am really racing
against time. Kerching! And he was not the only person to help Jackie
through checkout. But for one final averages request, I want to see if
Jackie can get any of these already generous people to help her carry
her shopping laden bags to the car. Would you mind giving us a hand out
to the car? Amazingly, three people agree, including this lovely chap,
who must be twice Jackie's age. What a trouper! Nast to see public-
spirited people. We have had a wonderful time in Stockport. Next
week, we are in Leeds, and we will have a moving experience. Meanwhile,
I am off home with my dinner for one. Thank you. Have a nice evening.
Stanley, Stanley. Let me clear something up before we talk about
people's generosity. You have never shopped in a supermarket before?
That is extremely unfair. A couple of years ago, I went shopping.
There was a domestic crisis. Truth to tell, my life has not been full
of shopping. I went to school, went to university, got married and
remarried. Shopping has not been a major feature. You just missed the
supermarket thing out? At yes. And yet in Manchester, it was a
terrific experience. So overall, you must have been happy with
people's kindness levels? I was amazed. They really went out of
their way to help. They were enjoying it. The chaps were reach
up to the top shelf as though they did it all the time. Four people
not only helped with the shopping, but they went outside to the car
and carried everything. They went beyond the call of duty. I
congratulate them. In these days of economic boom, they really shone a
bright light. Where would you be next week, somewhere else you have
never been before? We will be in Leeds at the University. I am told
you have to be careful where you walk in that area. Watch out for
the pavements. Stanley Johnson, thank you.
Another of the things you have told us that gets on your nerves are
roadworks, but where are the worst ones in Britain? We asked you for
your nominations, and here are some Grim scenes. This is the worst
roadworks in Britain Trophy. It had to be a traffic cone. But which of
the road works will walk away with the title? Magnificent trophy. Here
are the three finalists, in reverse order. The A6 in Salford, in third
place. They say it has been making the journey into Manchester
unbearable and has been there since July. Salford City Council said the
works have been there since March, not July! They have been part of
the regeneration of the area, but they are nearly finished. But the
only thing moving is a bicycle, so please make it quick. In second
place, there is the Kirkstall Road works in Leeds, put forward by a
viewer who says the scheme is to create a new bus lane and it has
been going on for two and a half years and caused major congestion.
Leeds City Council say the work started in 2010 and is taking so
long because they only work on it outside peak hours to avoid causing
disruption on a congested traffic route. But the council say when it
is finished, there will be new bus lanes. If you travel on the bus in
Leeds next year, be happy. But we have decided between us that the
winner this week is Pointon in Cheshire. Nominated by Matt
Williams. It looks like an absolute stinker. It takes up half the road.
It has been going on since last year and some of you have taken
hundreds of photos of it as a souvenir. The council told us the
recent discovery of crushed Underground trains, due to previous
gas maintenance works, has delayed progress, with the completion date
slipping from December 2011 until Next week we are handing out the
award for most confusing road signs in Britain. Do you get bamboozled
about what is a cycle path and what isn't? Send us your pictures.
let us know where to send our cameras and we will have the best
on next week's show. Earlier Stephen K Amos tried to persuade to
you brining back the milk -- bring back the milkman. We asked whether
you would be willing to pay extra for the return of the milk float.
Now the vote is now closed. Please don't vote any more as you will be
charged but your vote won't count. Full terms and conditions can be
found on our website. When we went to the wall last week one complaint
outranked more others, dog poo. Never fear there is a dedicated
group of people who have been taking action on your behalf. It
might be the dirtiest of jobs, but they're out there doing it. If you
are having your dinner, stop. This sports ground in Herefordshire
is a battlefield and the battle is being fought over this. There's
fouling everywhere, it's disgraceful. The football and rugby
pitches are used by hundreds of adults and children every weekend.
They've had enough of having to tackle dog poo as well as each
other. It's as if they don't care, they leave it lying around. Before
training I have to clear up sometimes four or five six bags.
There are times I dived in and it was disgusting. There should be a
law against it. In fact, since 1996 there has been a law against it. In
Herefordshire it carries an �80 fine and now a crack team from the
council's community protection unit has been called in to enforce it.
Who is going to be the first it get a ticket? To catch someone Jo and
Matt, the poo police as they're known have to see the owner walk
away. The poo police are experts when it comes to the hard, or
rather soft evidence. You can certainly tell by the type of dog
fouling that it is how big the faeces are as probably the size of
dog it came from. You just get an idea for that. This morning the
suspects include a poodle, a Jack Russell cross, a rather overweight
golden retriever. Here we go. Is that somebody now? Once that dog
gets out of the vehicle he will want to... When one of the suspects
fouls in the middle of the pitch Jo and Matt leap into action. But the
owner cleans up. And as the morning wears on more and more suspects are
eliminated from the inquiry. Blasted! Oh, well, it could be
raining, Jo. The Heavens open, but the poo
police aren't giving up that easily. It's the end of a frustrating day.
Jo and Matt find more evidence of the crime, but no culprit, it's
just rubbing their noses in it. Look. That's the type of people we
are after, Jo. Yeah, they let them out, they come running over here.
This is exactly what needs to be stopped. It's a few days later and
the poo police are back on patrol, solving this canine crime is
proving a difficult and costly operation. Team leader Craig is
under pressure to deliver and is taking personal command. We decided
this morning that we are not going to wear our high-vis jackets, we
are still in uniform and identify ourselves to to people when we
approach them. As they were arriving they could see us, so we
are parking here today and we will walk across and surprise them.
Craig's fixed penalty. Craig resorts to fraternising with the
enemy. But when a dog does pop one out under Craig's nose he
completely misses it. There we are. Look how fresh that is. I can't
leave you for five minutes. Team leader, what does he do! I love it!
I was watching one. I haven't got double vision. I can have a day's
leave next week then? You can have whatever you want, if you keep that
quiet! It's a painful dent to Craig's reputation. He likes to be
there first. I have got to get someone, Matt. This is doing my
head in. Patience, boy. As the morning wears on it looks like it's
going to be another failed operation, but suddenly it all
kicks off. While Matt is on the scent of a Westy, Craig has a work
shire terrier firmly tkrbg tkrbg Yorkshire terrier firmly in his
sights. Excuse me, Madame. I am one of the
dog wardens... The westy has fouled in the area of one of the junior
football pitches. I always pick up, always, always. The owner is upset
because she says she she always picks up her dog's mess. Rough
justice or not, Matt issues the �80 fine. On the rugby pitches Craig's
also had a result with the Yorky. gentleman turned up in a vehicle
here with a Yorkshire terrier and he's gone over there with total
disregard, he allowed his dog to poo on the rugby field and it's not
on. We were able to catch him and a fixed penalty for his trouble.
successful operation, but has team leader Craig redeemed himself?
forgive him now. He's got one. I don't think I would have done if he
hadn't caught that Yorkshire terrier. We will go and have a cup
of tea. APPLAUSE.
You see, last week you weren't so keen on Craig's tactics. You
thought he was heavy-handed with the fines. Although I was spent the
week picking up cigarette butts. What kind of - allows a dog to do
that on the sports field. It's the number one complaint to environment
enforcement officers. I am not at all surprised. Some of you may
think our bin cops are strict when they're nothing compared to the
mayor of the Italian island of Capris. It's been reported he
announced plans to put every dog on the island on an DNA database so
when poo is found the owner can be traced in a CSI-style. Craig would
absolutely love that. Now it's time for That's Britain news with Nick
Knowles. Good evening. The headlines: A
Leicestershireman was arrested and handcuffed in a fishmongers after
he was reported to police for telling people he was planning to
commit a murder, it was at this point the police discovered the man
concerned had been referring to murdering lobsters he planned to
cook for dinner that night with his wife. The police released him, but
then re-arrested him hours later after they read on Twitter he pwalt
-- battered some scampi. Finally, because we are that quick now, a
man who was sick and tired of cars and lorries speeding through a
sleepy village has taken action to stop them. He got so fed up with
the noise that he put his own speed limit sign up and he made sure that
nobody could say they hadn't seen it. Taking up the entire side of
his house the multicultural stands 15 -- mural took five hours to
complete. He plans to take it down at the end of the month by which
time it will probably have been shortlisted for the Turner Prize.
Now it's time to meet another of our hidden heroes. These are the
people who keep the cogs of the country turning. This man it's the
time who stops traffic jams. Steve is in charge of 800 phaoeults of --
miles of motorway in and around Birmingham. These are some of the
busiest thoroughfares in Europe. you do a job and do it well there
is that sense of satisfaction and pride that you have done the west
that you can do. Steve has a bird's eye view on his computer screens at
the West Midlands regional control centre. It's daunting at times,
exciting certainly. Different. It can be all of those things in the
space of one shift. Today only 30 minutes into his shift Steve faces
a crisis on a hectic M42 carriageway. A set of builder's
ladders have flown across three lanes of traffic. Potentially it's
a very dangerous situation. If you come across a set of ladders in the
carriageway at 70mph your reaction is to swerve and avoid. Steve puts
in place a rolling road block so a member of his team can get the
ladders off the road. An incident that took seven minutes to clear
has resulted in possibly five, six, seven kilometres of on jestian.
congestion. Steve's living nightmare would be
gridlock now. To keep the traffic flowing has to resolve any incident
within minutes and open up extra lanes. A good rush hour is where
people have got home in time for tea, put the children to bed. It's
satisfying to know they've got home safe and well and they can do what
they plan to do this evening. Keeping the heart of Britain moving
makes Steve a true hidden hero. APPLAUSE.
Earlier we asked whether or not you would be willing to pay an extra
25p for a pint of milk if it brought the milkman back to the
street. The votes are in. Let's find out.
Close. It's a yes! 59% yes. Come on! It's official, the majority of
you who voted do want to bring milkmen. Did you expect that and
well done? I am astounded. Thank you very much for supporting this.
I didn't expect it, I thought it would be 50-50. But come on!
Fantastic, thank you to everyone who voted and thanks so much to
Stephen K Amos. Next week you can vote on whether you want to bring
back the petrol pump attendant. I used to be an attendant once. I
thoroughly enjoyed it, chatting to customers and things. Let's look at
tonight's final word wall. We asked you to talk o our wall and get off
your chest the things that have been bothering you the most. This
is how it looked earlier. Strikes were a big thing in the middle of
the show. So, throughout the show... You have been telling us what's
getting your goat. The final update, let's look and see what's annoying
you now. Petrol prices, strikes still amongst it and wind turbines
which we talked about. Horse poo is looming larger there. That's true.
What else? Fog lights and cyclists, hopefully not together. Christmas
has turned up on there, we can't actually do anything about
Christmas. Although we have a Christmas-related film we are
making later on nearer the time. That's Britain has also appeared on
the wall. That was predictable. Probably complaints. E-mails?
calling on home numbers is a nightmare. How do they get your
income? -- your your number. Ashley is annoyed by people on trains who
seem to think they need a seat for kwreur bags. Gail says when driving
at night I get annoyed by cyclists with no lights or. Thank you for
getting in touch and for your stories. Remember keep e-mailing us
with the most confusing road signs in Britain. We will reveal what's
bothering you next week. Remember to put the word you want on the
That's Britain is a warm-hearted studio show about the things in modern life that drive us round the bend - from from the cost of heating your home, to the number of roads continually dug up to lay pipes, to littering. Presented by Nick Knowles and Julia Bradbury, the show reveals how Britain works and attempts to make life a little better for everyone in the UK - or at least have fun trying.
In this episode, Ade Edmondson unplugs the National Grid, Grainne Seoige takes on overcrowded trains, Stanley Johnson finds more good Samaritans amongst the British public and Stephen K Amos tries to bring back milkmen. There is also a search for the worst roadworks in Britain and the hidden heroes who make sure there is always cash in the cash point when you need it are celebrated.