Just when I thought I had recovered from the excitement of the Radio Festival,
I noticed that the BBC this morning have unveiled an online archive
of television and radio listings as printed in the Radio Times from the magazine’s
first 8 and a bit decades.
Genome, plays a part in not only finding listings from specific dates, but as a radio lover, I found it fascinating to look back at a time when all the producers of all radio shows
got mentioned when their programme was listed and it’s rather scary to find the names of people I have either met at Radio Academy events, or in some cases
even worked with!
As the archive is made up of listings as written in the Radio Times it is by no means an accurate database of what actually aired on television and radio over the last
80 plus years, due to either breaking news stories or in some cases industrial action.
One date in particular being the 12th of November 1978, where Radio 1 on the verge of switching to two new frequencies was unable to broadcast for the rest of Sunday night
after the first Top 40, with presenter Simon Bates who in this clip can be heard apologising to listeners regarding the last minute schedule changes
not mentioned in the Radio Times.
Another infamous setback of this, meant that newcomer Mike Read was unable to start on the station on his planned transmission date despite presenting Top Of The Pops
just days before, meaning that it wasn’t until January 1979 that the unions had settled down over the extended broadcasting hours for Radios 1 and 2.
Overall this site will become quite a valuable research resource and I’m quite honestly a little worried that my ability to remember transmission dates will now be a strength of everyone else!
Seriously, it’s an amazing archive.