Programmes

Here is a sample of Nick Ross’s wide-ranging contribution to British broadcasting over more than three decades.

The Truth About Crime with Nick Ross
A BBC One peak-time series across one month supported by year-long multimedia applications in 2009-10: tracking reported and unreported crime in a typical British city, exploding myths about crime statistics, showing how antisocial behaviour can cause more grief than so-called “serious” offending, how the justice system struggles to respond and how there are many ways to put things right. “Outstanding… insightful… compelling…” (The Times, 29 July 2009).

Crime Hotspots
Tory and Labour claim online crime maps are their idea and all police forces will be required to publish them. Nick Ross questions the cosy consensus and points out how and why the maps are often misleading.
Crimewatch
Crimewatch was the UK’s foremost crime appeal show and a consistent peak-time ratings hit from the moment Nick Ross launched it in 1984 to the moment he left the programme in 2007. During the time when he played a significant role in Crimewatch’s editorial direction it was nominated for national awards as best factual programme in 2002, 2003, 2004 and 2005.
Nick Ross – Secrets of the Crime Museum
The first time cameras have been allowed inside the so-called Black Museum at London’s New Scotland Yard, an unrivalled collection of artefacts from notorious crimes since the mid-nineteenth century.
The Grierson Awards
The Grierson Awards for Documentary, including Best Historical Documentary and Best Drama Documentary; named after John Grierson who was responsible for Drifters and Night Mail.
The Commission
A think-tank of the air (1997-2005): a commission of inquiry exploring iconoclastic solutions for major political and social problems.”Where important things are discussed by people with important things to say”
The Times”Please welcome back the man in his crinkly-browed serious mode as arbiter of The Commission. Ross invigilates as experts consider the pros and cons. At the end, an eminently sensible decision is reached. Ross, once again, is vindicated as a public service broadcaster of impeccable taste and breeding.”
Chris Campling, The Times

“There are at least two sound reasons why we should welcome the return of this weekly series. The first one – so obvious it scarcely needs mentioning – is that Nick Ross is in charge of the proceedings, and in my book he’s a broadcaster on radio and television who cannot put a foot wrong. The second reason is that the problems to which the analytic “commissioners” offer solutions demonstrate how sensitively they put their fingers on the public pulse.”
Peter Davelle, The Times

“The return of another old favourite: Nick Ross is back.”
Robert Hanks, The Independent

“Thought-provoking stuff. And not only because.. the man in charge is Nick Ross, a man I always feel could have called the Tower of Babel to order”
Elizabeth Cowley, The Times

“Nick Ross, impressive as ever, presents. Why can’t we have him back on Radio 4 more often?”
Gillian Reynolds, Daily Telegraph

“The way Nick Ross runs this lively discussion programme is proof that he is one of the best referees outside boxing.”
Peter Brookes, The Times

“This weekly debate series has provided a welcome return to Radio 4 for the calm, courteous Nick Ross. It has also raised difficult issues in a fair-minded manner.”
Paul Donovan, The Sunday Times

The Archive Hour
An audio portrait of an event from the past, using radio and other sources of the time.”Radio 4 is going from strength to strength; Archive Hour on Saturday nights is always rewarding, for example. Last night, in Children Talking, Nick Ross paid tribute to Harold Williamson, an early mentor in his own career. Ross played a great clip at once touching and hilarious.in which Williamson asked a boy: “Where did you come from when your mum got you?” “From a shop,” came the reply. He asked: “And how much did she pay for you?”. “One shilling,” he was told. Without any irony, he commented: “You were a bargain, weren’t you?”. “Yeh!” said the child happily. He asked another infant: “Do you know where babies come from?” It did: “Chester.””
David Sexton, Sunday Telegraph
Nick Ross
An eponymous experimental series on BBC2 which proved that even the most esoteric subjects (abstract art, scientific methodology) could win healthy daytime audiences.
Call Nick Ross
Call Nick Ross (1986-1997) reinvented the phone-in as serious and influential dialogue, and became a prime 9-10am feature on Radio 4.

Features:

Cracking Crime Day
‘Don’t have nightmares’ as BBC One devoted a whole day and evening of its schedules to exploding the myths and exploring the realities of crime, September 2002.Nick Ross with Fiona Bruce and Peter Snow exploded myths and tested the nation’s attitudes to sentencing with the largest judging panel ever created to shadow real events. Viewers decided what punishment fits the crime (and surprisingly concurred with the judges). Nick Ross interviewed the Home Secretary with a courtroom audience.
Good Driver
So You Think You Know How to Drive… BBC One, Tuesdays 8pm, 1999-2002.
Road safety made dramatic and entertaining.”An audaciously rich blend of proven contemporary formats, unashamedly didactic and morally improving – an ambition largely abandoned by programmes that go out in the middle of the evening”
Giles Smith, The Sunday Telegraph
Crimewatch File and Crimewatch Solved
Nick Ross and Sue Cook (later Fiona Bruce) presented dramatic reconstructions of Crimewatch successes. Every August, BBC One, 1986-2005.
Trail of Guilt
BBC One, forensic science, peak time, 1999.
Crime Limited
Crime prevention advice, peak-time series, BBC One, 1992.
Out of Court
BBC Two, current affairs series on the law 1975-1982.

Consumer & General Factual:

British Bravery Awards
BBC One, 2000-2002.
Destination Nightmare!
BBC One, 2000.
The Search
BBC One, 1999-2000.
Storm Alert
BBC One, 1999.
Watchdog
Nick Ross was the launch presenter of BBC One’s flagship consumer series from 1985, with, “good, hard-hitting investigative journalism delivered in a highly entertaining style”.

He has appeared as an occasional presenter on many programmes both for the BBC and ITV including Drugwatch, The Family Show, By-Line, Death on the Rock – The Inquiry, Any Questions, Newsnight, Heart of the Matter and On The Record.

Documentaries:

We Shall Overcome
Nick Ross’s autobiographical and controversial TV history of the start of the Northern Ireland troubles. Transmitted BBC One Northern Ireland October 1998, UK BBC Two 7.30pm Saturday 27 March 1999, and PBS in the US. We Shall Overcome took the Best Documentary award at the Celtic Film Festival in March 1999. See articles.”The true story was told for the first time on television in We Shall Overcome, presented by Nick Ross, the well-informed English journalist (nearly an oxymoron when it comes to writing about Ireland).”
Eoghan Harris, Sunday Times.”He demolishes many myths and gives us the kind of fact-based plain speaking that is all too often lacking on this subject.”
Critics’ TV Choice, Daily Mail

“An accessible, opinionated and vivid account of what went wrong.”
The Guardian

In the 1980s and 90s Nick Ross produced, directed, reported or narrated many films including The Fix and The Cure (on drug addiction) for BBC-2, The Biggest Epidemic of Our Times (on road accidents, BBC-1 and 2, variously repeated and updated) and biographies of Robert Mugabe and Enoch Powell.

News & Current Affairs:

Newsnight and Heart of the Matter
Guest presenter (various dates).
Drug Alert
BBC Radio 4, 1986 (Sony Radio Awards Best Current Affairs Programme)
Breakfast Time & Sixty Minutes
Morning and evening news magazines, BBC One 1983-5.
Man Alive
BBC Two 1976-83.
World at One
BBC Radio 4, 1972-5.
Newsdesk
BBC Radio 4, 1972-4.
Northern Ireland’s Main News
BBC Northern Ireland 1971-2
The World Tonight
BBC Radio 4 1972-4.

Politics:

Election Campaign
BBC Two, 1997
Party Conferences
Live coverage – BBC Two, 1997.
Westminster with Nick Ross
Westminster with Nick Ross (1994-1997) which combined political debate with live coverage of parliament.
A Week in Politics
Studio debates
BSkyB, ITV

Chat:

Star Memories
BBC One, 1985

Quizzes:

The Syndicate
A BBC One peak-time battle of wits, Mondays at 7pm July-September 2000.”Super-smooth Nick Ross hosts the general knowledge show which is a fiendish combination of Trivial Pursuit and the Krypton Factor.”
Garry Johnson, The Sun