Start the day the Granada way 

11 January 2001

As the 1960s went on companies became more imaginative with the way they started up, moving on from simple use of moving from the Picasso tuning signal and company symbol (how ever well matched to the tune). These didn’t necessary last very long before a different idea surfaced. Here we look at the differing way Granada started up in 1967, 1968, and 1969.


The North region (Winter Hill, Emley Moor and Scarborough transmitters) allow you to make final adjustments at home just to make sure your television is at optimum tuning.

Winter 1967 and everyone is waking up at Granada to the strains of The Granada March and slowly turning on the lights.

And Brian Trueman or Jan Leeming can explain the rest of the day

Listen to audio clip of Brian Trueman


29 July 1968, and Granada begins its 7-days-a-week north west operation. Time for a change – out go the dipoles and a new starting sequence comes in.

Another chance to fine tune your TV, this time courtesy of Granada Television rather than North region.

The thrill of a countdown. Starts after 2 minutes of Picasso at the beginning of the slow verse of the New March for Granada by Sir William Walton.

Note the white dot in the black circle – this isn’t a spot on the photograph but denotes the seconds.

Nearly there…

And up forms the new symbol for the last verse of the music, complete with salutation.

And this is the symbol for the rest of the evening. Not an arrow in sight.

1969 and colour

It’s time to fine tune that new colour set of yours with this new colour tuning signal from the ITA. Suddenly the ITA symbol is massive compared to the company name. It’s not much use for fine tuning, though. Or for getting the colour balance right since it is mostly black and white.

OK, these are rather indistinct B&W pictures, but are clear enough to show that the colour start-up sequence started in the same fashion as the previous one. Note though that the word “Granada” is no longer underlined.

But at the start of the last verse the word Granada disappears off the screen and a dot forms at the centre.

And a familiar symbol starts to form.

But carries in growing…

And eventually fills up the screen…

And as in the last sequence, it ends with the standard symbol.

You Say

4 responses to this article

Joseph Holloway 8 September 2015 at 6:26 am

Well as for the Granada startups when the William Walton piece stopped being transmitted in September 1973 they would’ve used different themes at startup and closedowns Music changed daily and it were for examples (as this could be complicated)
Bonzo (Out to Lunch)
Country (Derek Hilton)
Ecolog (Richard Harvey)
Hello Big Wide World (John Kent) (opening)
Goodbye Big Wide World (John Kent) (closing)
Sunday, Monday (Derek Hilton)
Strata Cruiser (Peter Tattersall/Cliff Webb)
Trampoline (John Kongos)
one of them would be instrumental and one of them would be vocal. (though it wouldn’t follow the IBA’s guidelines of having startup themes being instrumentals though ATV would’ve breached the rule in the early 1970s) Though to avoid confusions 2 years later, Granada commissioned Keith Mansfield (composer of Grandstand and other themes) to do their new signature tune (New Granada theme) that would become the themes used at both startups (bright version) and closedowns (relaxed version). though when TV-am came in 1983 it would give traditional startups the kiss of death.

Joseph Holloway 8 September 2015 at 6:35 am

When Granada stopped transmitting the William Walton piece in September 1973 they would use different pieces at both startup and closedowns but then to avoid confusions 2 years later the station commissioned Keith Mansfield (composer of Grandstand and other themes) to composed their new signature theme for both startups (bright version) and closedowns (relaxed version). though when TV-am began it gave the traditional startups the kiss of death.

Joanne Gray 10 October 2015 at 8:21 pm

Great to hear the dulcet tones of Brian Trueman. As a 70s born child, he was more well known to me through his voice work on Cosgrove-Hall animations and as host of BBC’s Screen Test, post Michael Rodd.

A few years ago, through listening to BBC7 (or 4Extra as it is now called) I became interested in radio comedy fromradio’s earliest days to more contemporary times and was rather interested when Mr Trueman’s name kept cropping up on the dramatis personae of the Clitheroe Kid, which must have been performed and recorded at the same time that he worked for Granada. Would his contract for Granada have permitted him to perform for the BBC, given the traditional battle lines between the Corporation and the commercial establishments back then? I’d be interested in knowing more about this if anyone knows, please?

Kif Bowden-Smith 12 October 2015 at 8:32 pm

Depends how badly the first employer wanted to hang on to them. Exclusivity cost more and stations on a budget would choose to pay less and give more freedom. Many middle ranking artists appeared on both channels. Nearly all the Light Programme personalities also had shows on Radio Luxembourg for instance and the BBC never stopped them. David Jacobs, Pete Murray, Jack Jackson, Alan Freeman, Bill Crozier, Muriel Young, Jimmy Young, Keith Fordyce, Don Moss… The list is endless. Exactly the same with ITV & BBC. Exclusivity cost the first payer a lot more. First rank stars were more prone to exclusive contracts….

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