The best Christmas Specials to look out for on TV this year

From the swansong of the Bake Off to Ireland's Fittest Families, here's what shows are pulling out the festive stops over Christmas

The best Christmas Specials to look out for on TV this year


Christmas Eve, Saturday, December 24th

  • Birds of a Feather, UTV Ireland at 8pm

Sharon, Tracey, and Dorien reunite for a special winter sun adventure that sees them heading off to Morocco.

  • Michael McIntyre’s Big Christmas Show, BBC One at 7.25pm

The British funnyman’s variety show returns for a festive special, featuring guest stars Katherine Tate, Harry Enfield, and Aled Jones.

  • Bridget & Eamon Christmas Special, RTÉ2 at 10.05pm

The 1980s-set Irish sitcom sees off Christmas by having the spatting married couple attempt to hide the body of Eamon’s mother, who Bridget electrocuted during dinner.

  • Blankety Blank with David Walliams, TV3 at 9pm

The classic game show returns for a one-off Christmas special of double ententres in what is the first full episode of the quiz on British TV since 2002.

  • Peter Kay’s Christmas Comedy Shuffle, BBC One at 10.05pm

A series of the best festive moments of the beloved British comedian’s two decades at the forefront of comedy.

  • Top of the Pops: Christmas Hits, BBC Four at 9pm

The much-missed chart show is back for a Christmas special that takes a look at some of the greatest Christmas Number Ones from years gone by.

Christmas Day, Sunday, December 25th

  • Mrs Brown’s Boys Christmas Special, RTÉ One at 10.25pm

Agnes has decided she’s had enough of decorating at Christmas and rules out getting a Christmas tree, while Grandad’s failing health weighs on the family in the Dublin-based sitcom.

  • The Great Christmas Bake Off, BBC One at 4.45pm

The first of three episodes that brings the beloved baking show’s time on the BBC to an end. Bringing back bakers from previous seasons, this will be our last GBBO slice till 2018.

  • Doctor Who Christmas Special, BBC One at 5.45pm

Another annual tradition, this year’s special sees Peter Capaldi’s Doctor in Manhattan, backed up by Matt Lucas as Nardole, in the sci-fi hit.

  • Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special, BBC One at 6.45pm

Six former celebrities who danced their way into the nation’s hearts return for the Christmas special of the ballroom dancing extravaganza.

  • Call the Midwife Christmas Special, BBC One at 8pm

Enjoying some well earned time off on Christmas Day, an SOS call reaches the midwives that takes them all the way to South Africa.

St Stephen’s Day, Monday, December 26th

  • Know the Score Christmas Special, RTÉ One at 6.20pm

Jacqui Hurley and captains Shane Byrne and Ruby Walsh look back at a bumper year of sport in the popular quiz show.

  • Pat Shortt’s Entertainment from D’Telly, RTÉ One at 7.20pm

A look back at some of the funniest Christmas moments from the Irish airwaves, presented by the comedian and comic actor Pat Shortt.

  • Outnumbered Christmas Special, BBC One at 10pm

Despite the kids having grown up somewhat, the BBC’s family sitcom has lost none of its warmth and punch as the Brockman’s are back for a festive episode.

Tuesday, December 27th

  • Inside No 9 Christmas Special, BBC Twi at 10pm

The barmy dark comedy from half of The League of Gentlemen team returns for a Christmas special, set in Austria during the 1970s.

  • Posh Pawn at Christmas, Channel 4 at 7pm

James takes his team for an ice-breaking Christmas excursion with jewellery expert Ian.

  • Amazing Spaces Snow Special, Channel 4 at 8pm

Presenters George Clarke and Will Hardie take their show on the road, looking for some of the most amazing and bespoke spaces across Canada’s western mountain ranges.

  • Walliams and Friend Christmas Special, BBC One at 10pm

David Walliams brings his signature sketch show back for a festive special, joined by Downton Abbey-star Hugh Bonneville as the ‘friend’.

Wednesday, December 28th

  • Celebrity Home of the Year, RTÉ One at 6.30pm

The interior design show is back for a special poke through the homes of some well-known Irish faces, including Darren Kennedy, Norah Casey, Terry Prone, Helen Cody, and Brent Pope.

  • Ireland’s Fittest Families: Mud, Sweat and Tears, RTÉ One at 7.30pm

Some of the 48 clans that have gone through the gruelling RTÉ show, as well as celebrity coaches past and present, return to look back on their experiences.

  • Robot Wars: Battle of the Stars, BBC Two at 8pm

Irish presenters Dara Ó Bríain and Angela Scanlon front a celebrity special of the robotic rumble, with guests including Scott Mills and Robbie Savage taking control the fighting robots.

  • The Nathan Carter Show Christmas Special, RTÉ One at 9.30pm

The Wagon Wheel singer sees off Christmas with a bumper special of his show, with Dublin’s Mansion House playing host to guests like Billy Ocean, KT Tunstall, Paddy Maloney, Eleanor Shanley, and Al Porter.

  • Live at the Apollo Christmas Special, BBC Two at 10pm

Romesh Ranganathan introduces some festive comedy from Seann Walsh, Kerry Godlimann, and Spencer Jones.

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