Janice Hadlow – After working for the BBC for the best part of 30 years, Janice in January 2016 stepped down as Controller, Special Projects and Seasons at BBC Television, a role that was created specifically for her and has been abolished since her departure.
She was previously Controller of BBC Two (2008-2014) and BBC Four (2004-2008). Whilst running those channels, she was responsible for a variety of factual programmes including Stargazing, Great British Bake Off, Pompeii, The Story of the Jews, Military Wives and Lambing Live.
She was also especially keen to nurture drama; successful projects on BBC Two included The Fall, Line of Duty, The Hollow Crown, Peaky Blinders, Wipers Times and The Honourable Woman. On Four, she oversaw a series of single dramas such as Fantabulosa, Quatermass Live and The Long Road to Finchley.
History has always been a strong interest for her, and she has commissioned series from a number of prominent historians, including Mary Beard, Amanda Vickery, Ben Macintyre, Dominic Sandbrook, Amanda Foreman and Lucy Worseley. In an earlier role as joint head of history at the BBC, she made Simon Schama’s History of Britain. As history commissioner at Channel Four, she commissioned series from David Starkey and Niall Fergusson, as well as The 1940s House and Edwardian Country House.
She is a Fellow of the Royal Television Society and the winner of their Judges Award for Achievement, 2013. She is also an Honorary Fellow at Royal Holloway College, University of London.
She is a graduate of King’s College, University of London where she received a first class degree in history.
She is married with two sons.
THE STRANGEST FAMILY
George III came to the throne in 1760 as a man with a mission. He wanted to be a new kind of king, one whose power was rooted in the affection and approval of his people. And he was determined to revolutionise his private life too – to show that a better man would, inevitably, make a better ruler. Above all he was determined to break with the extraordinarily dysfunctional home lives of his Hanoverian forbears. For his family, things would be different.
And for a long time it seemed as if, against all the odds, his great family experiment was succeeding. His wife, Queen Charlotte, shared his sense of moral purpose, and together they did everything they could to raise their tribe of 13 young sons and daughters in a climate of loving attention. But as the children grew older, and their wishes and desires developed away from those of their father, it became harder to maintain the illusion of domestic harmony. The king’s episodes of madness, in which he frequently expressed his repulsion for the queen, undermined the bedrock of their marriage; his disapproving distance from the bored and purposeless princes alienated them; and his determination to keep the princesses at home, protected from the potential horrors of the continental marriage market, left them lonely, bitter and resentful at their loveless, single state.
At one level, ‘The Strangest Family’ is the story of how the best intentions can produce unhappy consequences. But the lives of the women in George’s life – and of the princesses in particular – were shaped by a kind of undaunted emotional resilience that most modern women will recognise. However flawed George’s great family experiment may have been, in the value the princesses placed on the ideals of domestic happiness, they were truly their father’s daughters.
PUBLICATION DATE: 28th August 2014