Tonight’s BBCtv… in 1969 

4 April 2018

It’s Good Friday, 4 April 1969 and BBC-1 North starts at 10.30am with a mass from Worcester. The United Service ends at 11.15am and we return to a trade test transmission and probably music from the church organ.

Over on BBC-2, the doors of the Play School are opened at 11am by Julie Stevens and Sir Brian Cant.

BBC-1 opens-up a handful of its transmitters at 12.20pm, for an offering from BBC Wales, Lloffa, before the rest of the network grinds back into life at 12.35pm for a Laurel & Hardy film, Way Out West. Andy Pandy comes out to play 1.35pm in the Watch with Mother slot. BBC Wales opts out with a Welsh children’s offering. After the news and weather, at 1.50pm, we’re back with a more solemn service for Easter, this time from Edinburgh.

All out sports action with a Good Friday edition of Grandstand with Frank Bough, featuring motor racing and rugby league. A random edition Jackanory is pushed to the later slot of 5.05pm, which is swiftly followed by the charming Basil Brush at 5.20pm. After the mews and weather at 5.50pm, it’s time for the regional news up your end. It’s Look North with Stuart Hall broadcasting to the North West and Mike Neville to the North East.

More filling at 6.20pm with Charlie Chaplin, whilst BBC Wales airs a generational quiz called Ten… Twenty… Thirty.

Cowboy drama at 6.45pm with The Virginian, is followed by kinky fun at 8pm, where the George Michell Singers pop on masks and offer us a Masquerade. The show is hosted by Leslie Crowther.

BBC-2 wakes up again at 7.30pm for Newsroom with John Timpson and Peter ‘Hic’ Wood. Then we’re straight into the first part of a three-part Detective series called The Expert. In a packed schedule this evening, all in glorious colour, BBC-2 even fits in a bit of Fanny Cradock at 8.50pm.

John Edmunds is on news duties at 8.50pm on BBC-1. At 9.05pm Run For Your Life follows Paul Bryan on his quest to do loads of exciting things before he dies, which sadly for him could be at any minute. Lucky, he lasted another three years. On 2, the ground-breaking Civilisation continues with Kenneth Clark, this week looking at protests and communication.

BBC-1 plumps for culture at 9.55pm and opera in the shape of The Rebel, followed at 11pm by documentary programme following the players of the Northcott Theatre in Exeter as they perform the play The Bastard King. The Late Night News & Weather from London is followed by more God stuff and then back to BBC North for the North News Headlines and one of those rather lovely regional closedowns.

BBC-2 goes all ‘ooh la la’ with its French Cinema season at 9.55pm. A late news & weather update is followed by more upmarket programming, this time Fauré Requiem.

Well, if you thought Friday was good… check out what’s on Saturday! On the cover of this week’s Radio Times is little Lulu, who will have a lot to shout, when she becomes the second UK act to win the Eurovision Song Contest, coming joint first with the Netherlands, Spain and France.

Happy Easter Eggs Everyone!

A Transdiffusion Presentation

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6 responses to this article

Paul Mason 5 April 2018 at 5:48 pm

Jason you are joking. The Laurel and Hardy film features the song “Trail of the Lonesome Pine”. BBC2 was pretty heavy going, apart from Play School! As you may know it was ’73 before we got a suitable 625 TV.
Basil Brush was on his third BBC companion after the late David Nixon and Rodney Bewes. Derek Fowlds is still with us having gone on to Yes Minister and Heartbeat. Sadly a recently deceased (in 2018) actor Rosemary Leach was on Jackanory.
Masquerade was a half hearted attempt to answer criticism of the Black and White Minstrel show to see if the songs stood out without the men having to wear black make-up.Despite this the B&WMS shamefully continued until 1978. Political correctness did not kill it off- it was retired after 20 years.
The Mason household was stuck with BBC Look North Leeds because of the 1968 transmitter changes. So we never saw the young John Humphrys on Look North Manchester. He’s still doing BBC Radio 4s Today programme at 75? Time to retire boyo? Finally Peter Woods. I used to call him ” Multi-storey eyebags”. He would have been a good companion for Henry the bloodhound in the Chunky ads.

Joanne Gray 6 April 2018 at 12:54 pm

Thanks for including the Eurovision in full. I was born in 1971, so wasn’t around for this one. Interesting to note that a few of the Intervision “Iron Curtain” countries were tuning in, as well as a few South American countries – quite a technological, as well as social, achievement for the time.

Paul Mason 6 April 2018 at 8:51 pm

Joanne you didn’t miss much! Lulu doing Boom Bang A Bang In 1975 the winner was Ding Ding A Dong by a best forgotten Dutch group called Teach In. In 1971 was the hideous Jack In The Box by Clodagh Rodgers. Then as always, the Eurovision Song Contest is the scrapyard of musical talent, with the exception of ABBA oblivion guaranteed.

Paul Mason 6 April 2018 at 9:06 pm

Joanne I forgot to add that Eurovision was really the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) which is different to the EU. Yugoslavia, Turkey and Israel were regulars in the 1970s. Of course Yugo broke up in the 1990s civil war and the former Eastern bloc countries and even Australia take part!Of course I won’t be watching!

Joanne Gray 7 April 2018 at 3:51 pm

Hi, Paul. It’s because it’s so tacky and full of newly emerged and non-European nations that I watch it. It’s so bad, but addictive – like cream cakes. And full of surprises. Don’t forget that Riverdance also came from Eurovision. Although a few years ago, the Irish clearly didn’t want to win as the Jedwards represented them two years in a row.

Arthur Nibble 8 April 2018 at 4:57 pm

“Riverdance” was the half-time Eurovision entertainment in 1994, when it’s rumoured Ireland entered a couple of oldish blokes with a song they thought stood no chance of winning, thus avoiding the need to host again the next year. As it was, their artists Paul Harrington and Charlie McGettigan were runaway winners with “Rock ‘N’ Roll Kids”.

I’d never heard of hunter’s pot, the main dish cooked by Fanny Cradock. It’s also known as perpetual stew, and the idea is that the ingredients aren’t set and the pot is never or rarely emptied all the way, with ingredients and liquid added when the stew starts getting low. In 2015, a restaurant in New York kept the same perpetual stew going for four months!

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