Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 28 December 2014

Devey to front welfare state show

Hilary Devey will run her own dole office in the Channel 4 show
Hilary Devey will run her own dole office in the Channel 4 show

Benefit claimants will experience the welfare state in its "tough original form" in a TV show fronted by Hilary Devey.

The Dragons' Den star will run her own 1949-style dole office in the new, Channel 4 three-part series.

Claimants "will live by the system's initial strict rules" and viewers will see whether the experience changes their attitudes to work, unemployment and living off the state.

Julia Harrington, Channel 4's commissioning editor for history, said that the show would ask the question "Was the past better or worse today?".

She said: "In this experiment we'll be applying that question to a subject of real contemporary heat and importance: have we lost our way with the welfare state?"

Meredith Chambers, creative director of Twenty Twenty, which is making the show, said: "We're so excited that Hilary passionately wants to get to grips with one of the biggest thorns in the side of public life, in a way that brings scale and attitude."

Other new Channel 4 programmes include a Saturday-night panel show, Comedy World Cup, hosted by David Tennant and featuring teams of comics.

The broadcaster will also be showing two new dramas, Southcliffe, which tells the story of a fictional English market town devastated by a spate of shootings, and Youngers, on E4, which will be set in the UK urban music scene.

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Your heart and head are working in perfect harmony. This is a good time to make plans for the future. Pursuing a childhood dream is strongly advised. You're a highly practical person who doesn't like building castles in the air. Stop disparaging fantasies. They can take you to incredible heights. The prospect of fulfilling your potential should appeal to an ambitious person like you. Fortunately, friends will be very supportive. Ask for help whenever you get stuck in a tight corner.More