Review: Kathy Burke's exploration of wealth was a bit like getting money for old rope

It’s always been a taboo subject, money. My parents always told me that it was a thing you never talked about. Apparently, no one told Kathy Burke, who spent her new documentary Money Talks (Channel 4, Mon, 10pm) inveigling people into telling her how much they were worth, as she examines the British public’s rather troubled relationship with bread, dough or, as Burke puts it, “shekel”.

Friday, 9th July 2021, 5:00 pm

She’s a very nosy presence, bustling into homes and lives, effing and jeffing, and not afraid of asking hard questions, but she’s also self-deprecating and open about her own situation, so she never seems rude.

However, what she finds out is not ground-breaking. A multi-millionaire caravan park owner – I know, who knew caravans could be so lucrative? – was driven by his fear of going bust.

Having grown up in a penniless travelling family, Alfie Best told Burke: “I’m terrified of going bankrupt, because let me tell you, it can happen to anybody.”

Kathy Burke: Money Talks on Channel 4 missed some big questions

Now he lives in a Surrey mansion, he’s a bit more cagey about how his children view cash. It would have been interesting to have had their views on money, having grown up with it all around them, but they were nowhere to be seen.

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In the end, despite a lovely chat with Wigan midwife Ruth, who win a million on the lottery and went back to work, Burke shed little light on how we view money, and what she did come up with wasn’t new. Money for old rope, really.

Gold Rush: Our Race to Olympic Glory (BBC1, Mon, 9pm) was more of a clip show than an in-depth look at how British sport went from laughing stock to powerhouse – but what a clip show. Some fantastic footage of some of the greatest British Olympic moments, from Sir Chris Hoy to Jonathan Edwards. Terrific.

The Euro 2020 semi-final (ITV, Weds, 7pm) between England and Denmark was memorable for many great reasons, and one bad – Sam Matterface’s commentary veered from banal to Partridge and straight on to nonsense in less time it took for Harry Kane to put home the rebound.

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