Ross Kemp's Britain


Series 1 - Episode 3 Alcohol



“Ross Kemp! Where’s ’e come from?” says a delighted drunk in a Sunderland hospital bed, as the presenter approaches. His face is awash with blood (the drunk’s, not Kemp’s) but when asked if he’s been fighting, he’s indignant: “It weren’t a fight – ’e clouted us with a hammer!”

It’s a moment of comparative relief in another dispiriting dispatch. Every hour, Kemp tells us, somebody dies from alcohol abuse in Britain, and it’s when you see the state of an A&E unit on a Saturday night – swearing, belligerent people rolling in, and the staff needed to deal with each one – that the cost to the NHS comes home to you. It’s a tough watch but try not to self-medicate.


The actor explores the nation's drinking habits, looking at the impact of alcohol on the individual as well as society as a whole. Ross's investigation starts on call with a paramedic in Sunderland as he examines what the UK's drink-obsessed culture is costing the ambulance services, hospitals and the police, and also learns the price of social drinking when he meets those whose habits have cost them their friends, family and almost their live.