Twas The Night Before Christmas

We are all familiar with the opening line of the much-loved traditional Christmas poem 'Twas the Night Before Christmas, but in the hands of five inventive and imaginative writers the traditional gets a contemporary and unexpected twist in this week of new stories for BBC7.

Book-ending their stories with the opening and closing lines of the poem, writers Philip Ardagh, Carlo Gebler, Garry Kilworth, Dominic Holland and Arthur Mathews bring us five unique interpretations of what might happen on the night before Christmas.

From a Celtic spin on an ancient folk tale to some unexpected encounters with some favourite Christmas characters, the stories provide an entertaining collection to usher in the festive season.

Episodes

EpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
RepeatedComments
20111217 (BBC7)Poet Ian McMillan travels to New York in search of information about this most famous and seasonal poem.

Poet Ian McMillan travels to New York to research this most famous and seasonal poem.

Comedy. It Never Happened20061219 BT=0015 (BBC7)Working on Christmas Eve is no fun, especially when your eccentric boss is acting even more oddly than usual. Episode 1 of 5.
Silver Hoof, The Goat20061220 BT=1145 (BBC7)
20061221 BT=0015 (BBC7)
Old Gregory adopts ophan Maggie and her cat Edmund, as he needs the company. Episode 3 of 5.

Old Gregory adopts ophan Maggie and her cat Edmund, as he needs the company. Episode 3 of 5.

01It Never Happened2005121920051220
20081222 BT=1300 (BBC7)
20091222 BT=0430 (BBC7)
20061218 (BBC7)
20061219 (BBC7)
20071224 (BBC7)
20081222 (BBC7)
20091221 (BBC7)
20091222 (BBC7)
. Working on Christmas Eve is no fun if your eccentric boss acts even more oddly than usual.

. Working on Christmas Eve with your boss acting even more oddly than usual in no fun!

Robert Webb reads Arthur Mathews' tale.

Working on Christmas Eve is no fun, especially when your eccentric boss is acting even more oddly than usual.

by Arthur Mathews

Read by Robert Webb

Produced by Heather Larmour

Understaffed, underpaid, the busiest time of the year with urgent deadlines to meet: Christmas Eve in the office is no picnic and certainly no time for your eccentric boss to behave even more strangely than usual!

"Working on Christmas Eve is no fun if your eccentric boss acts even more oddly than usual.

Understaffed, underpaid, the busiest time of the year with urgent deadlines to meet: Christmas Eve in the office is no picnic and certainly no time for your eccentric boss to behave even more strangely than usual!"

02Gifts2005122020051221
20061219 (BBC7)
20061220 (BBC7)
20071225 (BBC7)
20081223 BT=1300 (BBC7)
20081223 (BBC7)
20091222 (BBC7)
20091223 BT=0430 (BBC7)
20091223 (BBC7)
20061219 BT=1145 (BBC7)
20061220 BT=0015 (BBC7)
. A student gets more than a lift from some unusual travellers on Christmas Eve.

. Cold, wet and hitching a lift on Christmas Eve, a student gets both a lift and a rare gift

Joe Armstrong reads Garry Kilworth's tale.

Cold, wet and hitching a lift on Christmas Eve, a student gets both a lift and a rare gift from some unusual travellers.

by Garry Kilworth

Read by Joe Armstrong

Produced by Heather Brennon

Cold, wet and far from home on Christmas Eve, a young hitchhiker on his way to his friend's house gets not just a lift from some unusual travellers but a gift that will have a profound effect on the rest of his life.

"A student gets more than a lift from some unusual travellers on Christmas Eve.

Cold, wet and far from home on Christmas Eve, a young hitchhiker on his way to his friend's house gets not just a lift from some unusual travellers but a gift that will have a profound effect on the rest of his life."

Christmas is a magical time for Philip, and one Christmas Eve he has a miraculous encounter. Episode 5 of 5.

Christmas is a magical time for Philip, and one Christmas Eve he has a miraculous encounter. Episode 5 of 5.

03Silver Hoof The Goat2005122120051222
20061220 (BBC7)
20061221 (BBC7)
20071226 (BBC7)
20081224 BT=1300 (BBC7)
20081224 (BBC7)
20091223 (BBC7)
20091224 BT=0430 (BBC7)
20091224 (BBC7)
. Old Gregory adopts orphan Maggie and her cat Edmund for company.

. Old Gregory adopts young orphan Maggie and her cat Edmund for company. By Carlo Gebler.

By Carlo Gebler.

Read by David Kelly & Hannah R Gordon

Produced by Heather Brennon

When old Gregory adopts young orphan, Maggie, she insists her cat Edmund comes too.

The following Christmas they receive a wonderful gift but sadly for Maggie it doesn't come without making a sacrifice.

David Kelly and Hannah R Gordon read Carlo Gebler's tale.

"Old Gregory adopts young orphan Maggie and her cat Edmund for company.

David Kelly and Hannah R Gordon read Carlo Gebler's tale."

04The Emergency Visit2005122220051223
20061221 (BBC7)
20061222 (BBC7)
20071227 (BBC7)
20081225 BT=1300 (BBC7)
20081225 (BBC7)
20091224 (BBC7)
20091225 BT=0430 (BBC7)
20091225 (BBC7)
20061221 BT=1145 (BBC7)
20061222 BT=0015 (BBC7)
. As A&E Doctor Robert Johnson starts his shift, an unforgettable patient arrives.

. As Dr Robert Johnson begins his busy shift, he encounters an unforgettable patient.

As A&E Doctor Robert Johnson starts his shift, an unforgettable patient arrives.

Philip Jackson reads Dominic Holland's tale.

As Dr Robert Johnson begins his busy shift, he encounters an unforgettable patient.

As Dr Robert Johnson begins his busy shift in A&E, he is about to encounter a patient he'll never forget.

by Dominic Holland

Read by Philip Jackson

Produced by Heather Larmour

Shootings, stabbings, beatings, hit and runs, muggings - just an average Christmas Eve shift in a busy Accident and Emergency department for Dr Robert Johnston.

That and the odd drunk and disorderly in Father Christmas outfit! Robert has seen it all before and is disillusioned with Christmas and with human nature, but this is one shift he won't forget in a hurry!

Shootings, stabbings, beatings, hit and runs, muggings - just an average Christmas Eve shift in a busy Accident & Emergency department for Dr Robert Johnston.

"As A&E Doctor Robert Johnson starts his shift, an unforgettable patient arrives.

That and the odd drunk and disorderly in Father Christmas outfit! Robert has seen it all before and is disillusioned with Christmas and with human nature, but this is one shift he won't forget in a hurry!"

As Dr Robert Johnson begins his busy shift in A and E, he is about to encounter a patient he'll never forget. Episode 4 of 5.

As Dr Robert Johnson begins his busy shift in A and E, he is about to encounter a patient he'll never forget. Episode 4 of 5.

05 LASTNot A Word Of A Lie2005122320051224
20081226 BT=1300 (BBC7)
20091226 BT=0430 (BBC7)
20061222 (BBC7)
20061223 (BBC7)
20071228 (BBC7)
20081226 (BBC7)
20091225 (BBC7)
20091226 (BBC7)
20061222 BT=1145 (BBC7)
20061223 BT=0015 (BBC7)
. Young Philip's Christmas Eve encounter proves that the season is truly miraculous.

. Christmas is magical to Philip. On Christmas Eve he has a miraculous encounter.

James Fleet reads Philip Ardagh's tale.

On Christmas Eve he has an encounter which confirms that it is a truly miraculous time.

by Philip Ardagh

Read by James Fleet

Produced by Heather Brennon

Despite his older brother's best efforts to spoil things for him Christmas is still a special and magical event for young Philip; and on Christmas Eve he has an encounter which confirms that it is indeed an enchanting and miraculous time.

Christmas is magical to Philip. On Christmas Eve he has an encounter which confirms that it is a truly miraculous time. Episode 5 of 5.

Christmas is magical to Philip. On Christmas Eve he has an encounter which confirms that it is a truly miraculous time. Episode 5 of 5.