Tonight’s ABC Midlands… in 1965 

23 October 2014

From TVWorld magazine for Saturday 23 October 1965 comes this run down of what you could be watching on ABC Midlands. Things worth noting:

  • The Rediffusion-owned TVTimes had provided the listing magazine for the midlands from 1956 until 1964. In 1964, ABC and ATV took away the TVTimes contracts, formed a joint company – Aston Publications Limited – and started TVWorld instead
  • The magazine, like Aston Publications, is exactly 50-50 ABC and ATV – with a second cover in the middle, allowing you to fold the magazine over to create an ATV-only edition on Monday
  • ABC comes on air with adult education at 12.25pm – educational programmes not counting towards the total allowed broadcasting hours but allowing the unused minutes of advertising time to be shifted to peaktime
  • Tyne Tees’s Say it in Russian is clearly adult education. Southern’s The Full Man, however? A bit of a stretch
  • Wrestling is included within World of Sport. It sometimes was and sometimes ran later in the evening as a separate programme
  • Up against Doctor Who over on BBC-1 is the awful US import Lost in Space. Vast numbers of young people remember the second half of Lost in Space very well, having turned over after Doctor Who ready for Thank Your Lucky Stars
  • Speaking of which, Jim Dale – the Jim Dale – presents Thank Your Lucky Stars from the Alpha Studios in Aston, Birmingham at 6.15pm
  • The Avengers at 8.25pm is the epoch-making episode ‘Death at Bargain Prices’. Possibly the definitive Avengers episode, it is stylish, fast moving and scary and has just the right amount of total surreality. Even the Americans think so
  • The big movie at 9.35pm is RKO’s King Kong from 1933. It truly is a spectacular film, but at 32 years old it was ancient even by the then-standard long lead times until television rights were sold
  • The Epilogue ran 7 days a week between ABC and ATV (it was credited as an Alpha Television production) in the midlands. In the north, it only ran on ABC, Granada not being one for religious programming. This meant viewers in the north not unfrequently heard the presenter saying such weird things on Saturday as “as I was saying yesterday” or on Sunday “tomorrow, I’ll look at…” despite the programme being, for them, a weekends-only thing. Nobody seemed to mind

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4 responses to this article

Alan Keeling 18 January 2015 at 8:35 pm

Thank Your Lucky Stars came from the Alpha Television studios at Aston, near Birmingham City centre. I think the shows were recorded on a Sunday, prior to transmission on the following Saturday evening.

Joseph Gallant 21 January 2016 at 1:18 am

The episode of “Lost In Space” transmitted by ABC Weekend that evening aired just seventeen days after it was first transmitted by CBS in the United States.

Steve Scales 23 August 2017 at 8:31 pm

Although Death at Bargain Prices is a beautifully photographed episode with a clever plot; the episode is hardly epoch-making. Potential candidates for that title would be The Cybernauts, A Surfeit of H2O, Man-Eater of Surrey Green or The Hour that Never Was. Of course the Epoch-Magnificent episode is The House that Jack Built … but that was almost at the end of the Emma Peel black and white series, so the Epoch was up and running by then.

Sally Wilton 27 June 2021 at 12:45 pm

Thanks for the article and the comment from Alan Keeling about the recording of Thank Your Lucky Stars. Do you know who was featured on page 3 of this magazine, as referenced under the listing, please?

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