What to watch tonight

PUBLISHED: 00:01 08 November 2017

Programme Name: Big Life Fix - Children in Need Special 2017 - TX: 08/11/2017 - Episode: n/a (No. n/a) - Picture Shows:  Haiyan Zhang, Ross Atkin, Ruby Steel, Yusuf Muhammad, Jude Pullen, Akram, Ryan White, Zoe Laughlin - (C) Studio Lambert - Photographer: Studio Lambert

Programme Name: Big Life Fix - Children in Need Special 2017 - TX: 08/11/2017 - Episode: n/a (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: Haiyan Zhang, Ross Atkin, Ruby Steel, Yusuf Muhammad, Jude Pullen, Akram, Ryan White, Zoe Laughlin - (C) Studio Lambert - Photographer: Studio Lambert

WARNING: Use of this copyright image is subject to the terms of use of BBC Pictures' Digital Picture Service (BBC Pictures) as set out at In particular, this image may only be published by a registered User of BBC Pictures for editorial use for the purpose of publicising the relevant BBC programme, personnel or activity during the Publicity Period which ends three review weeks following the date of transmission and provided the BBC and the copyright holder in the caption are credited. For any other purpose whatsoever, including advertising and commercial, prior written approval from the copyright holder will be required.

Wednesday’s best TV: Big Life Fix, The Truth About Slim People, Doc Martin

Big Life Fix: Children in Need Special, BBC2, 9pm

He’s presented programmes on Russia, Greece, Turkey and Ireland, not to mention the Caribbean and the Tea and Coffee Trails, but Simon Reeve can occasionally be found on home turf.

Last year he hosted a show called The Big Life Fix, which featured people who were struggling with what many of us would consider to be simple tasks and challenged some of Britain’s best designers to find solutions. Think of it as a bit like the more emotional episodes of DIY SOS but with more gadgets.

Now Reeve and his team are back for a one-off special that features three children with disabilities and the experts who are hoping to help them. The youngsters include eight-year-old Josh from London, who has a rare condition which means he was born blind - in many ways, that hasn’t stopped him for leading a normal childhood but he can’t currently join his friends in the playground as he can’t see the physical boundaries of the space or what his mates are doing.

Design strategist Ruby Steel and engineer Jude Pullen come up with ideas to help Josh stay safe in the playground, ranging from GPS satellite navigation to musical tiles. The programme also meets Ayala and her twin Caira, who were born prematurely at 25 weeks with severe bleeds on the brain and holes in their hearts. Now aged eight, Caira is able-bodied but Ayala suffers from cerebral palsy and her movement is severely restricted - she relies on her mum and sister to help her get dressed, eat and play. Luckily, designer and engineer Ross Atkin has an idea that could let them play together on an equal footing.

Finally, we’re introduced to 10-year-old Aman, whose family were involved in a serious road accident during a holiday in India three years ago. While the rest of the family recovered from their injuries, Aman was left with serious brain damage which has affected her memory - she forgets important aspects of her childhood and struggles to recall instructions from the teachers at the school. Designer and technologist Haiyan Zhang hopes to develop memory recall tools that will leave Anan less dependent on a classroom assistant - and also help her to remember some of her precious, childhood experiences.

The Truth About Slim People, Channel 4, 9pm: Do they have hollow legs? Have they made a pact with Satan? Do they have a portrait in the attic gaining weight on their behalf? We all know the people who never have to worry about their weight yet seem to eat whatever they like. And most of us hate these people, secretly. Not really (well, just a bit). This programme follows Yemi and Anne Marie to find out what their secret is and whether there actually is a magic wand which can make the rest of us thin. I bet if there is, it’s made of damn carrot.

Doc Martin, ITV, 9pm: It’s already the end of another series – where is the time going? Sigourney Weaver stars in this last episode as she hunts a parasitic alien which has decided to make Doc its host. Oh, hang on, that’s the script I’m working on. Martin prepares for his hearing but despite having closed the practice, his patients are still trying to make appointments. And then an American tourist returns to the town, hoping to research her family tree. Believe it or not, her surname isn’t Ripley. Did you see what I did there?

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