On Screen Clocks 

2 February 2004 tbs.pm/3423

Until 1996, Tyne Tees, like most TV stations, had an on screen clock. On this page, we see a few, as well as the ones you weren’t supposed to see – the VT clocks.


Clock from 1959

Probably the first station clock, this was, like most on screen clocks on Tyne Tees, a mechanical clock, sat in front of a camera. Note the Tyne Tees logo in place of the 12, which gets nicely hidden by the minute hand.


With the advent of colour, Tyne tees introduced a new clock. In two colours… Obviously designed to look good on black and white televisions too, this clock always seemed to look more like an oval than a circle…

As well viewing the Flash recreation, you can download a screensaver version of the clock on our Flash Files page.


Tyne Tees Clock from 1982

Introduced in 1982, despite looking like it is computerised, it’s not. It’s juddery second hand gave it away as being mechanical

With the flowing rivers ident, the clock got a new backdrop in 1988, changing to a wonderful combination of beige with cyan lettering. Lovely.

Perhaps someone realised what an awful combination it was, as the clock was rarely used until the colour scheme was replaced by cyan on blue in 1989.

With the ITV generic ident, the clock got consigned to history. Tyne Tees did have the technology in place so that they could superimpose the clock onto a blank ITV slide, but the unreliableness of the technology at that time meant it was never used.


<Clock from 1993.

The new look logo of 1992 saw a new clock appear on screens. Rather minimalist with horizontal lines in the background, we believe it was computer generated.


Recreated clock from 1996]Yorkshire TV clock from 1996

There were to be no more clocks, except for a brief reprise in 1996. In-between the end of invision announcements and the introduction of the Channel 3 North East brand, Tyne Tees was given a version of the Yorkshire clock, recreated here by Jason James. The original Yorkshire version shown above left.

There was to be no clock to go with the C3NE ident, and indeed there have been no station clocks since. It actually took Yorkshire another three years to stop using theirs, with it being one of very few clocks on ITV.

VT Clocks

Rarely seen on screen, here are a few of the ‘hidden’ clocks that you were never meant to see!

VT Clock from 1973VT Clock from 1999

Twenty six years apart – a VT clock from 1973 on the left, and a very generic looking computerised version from 1999 Incidently, besides being a chalk-board VT clock that should have been thrown out many years ago, apparently the sports department still use the 1973 VT clocks!

News VT Clock from 1996News VT Clock from 1999

The news departments VT clocks are different. The one on the left is from 1996 while on the right, Christmas 1999. Note the suitably seasonal touch!

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1 response to this article

Graham Pearson 21 January 2017 at 10:17 pm

I believe no in vision continuity meant Yorkshire Television used clocks for more than just links into ITV News and at closedown.

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