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bluecortina394 posts since 26 Jul 2012
Individual companies could not take a network feed of filler material from another Itv company - each one had to fill locally.

To do otherwise would run the risk of escalating the dispute at Granada to another company. This was the agreement between the ITV management and the unions at ITV at the time you refer to.


How Did Central and HTV both broadcast thats Hollywood? or was that pure chance there had the same programme?


I can't answer your question, I can only confirm each local ITV station had to fill the network gap locally.

What I find curious is why a dispute between the electricians (EEPTU) and local ITV management at Granada would take the station off the air? ACTT staff were responsible for the technical and practical aspects of getting any material on the air and they were, on the face of it, not involved in the dispute. Perhaps the electricians just simply switched the breakers off to vital equipment (although I suspect in practice it might have been a nominal agreed switching off of the breakers to avoid any actual damage to kit on re-powering). Just an idle thought, I don't know the answer.
bluecortina394 posts since 26 Jul 2012
That's fascinating.
So, I guess the reverse would also be true, if the incoming feed was lost, then presumably the outgoing would be lost as well?

In which case what would happen?

If a station couldn't air a programme to the network due to a down 'out' line, would each company have to fill locally, or would someone like Thames provide a network filler?

Or, if there was plenty of time - get that VT in a fast car to a neighbour region (Thames to Southern / Granada to Yorkshire etc) and get the programme to air that way?


In the days of analogue pal, the circuits in the ITV stations I worked at were supplied by a lead sheathed cables containing 4 'tubes' from the local BT switching point. Unlikely for all four to go down I would have thought, not impossible with a big JCB I suppose. If an ITV station was going to be off-air for any length of time I would have thought the ITA/IBA would arrange for a neighbouring contractor to be put to air as a replacement service - certainly that happened. Circuits were usually repaired very quickly by postie. I think, 'think' mind you, that the bigger Itv stations with multiple cables in and out that they may have taken different physical routing for rather obvious reasons once outside their premises.

If a gap in the network schedule was due to a technical fault (rather than a dispute) then it would have been ok for the rest of the network to fill the gap with networked material from another company. ITV was a very common sense operation (and a very complicated one).
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robertclark125853 posts since 13 Jan 2009
STV Central Reporting Scotland
I seem to recall reading somewhere, that during the IBA days, if a regional contractor sent back Black to the transmitter for 30 seconds, then the IBA, or the local transmitters, would then take over with the stand by caption, as detailed at the start of the clip.

So how would the local transmitter(s) and the IBA know when to remove the caption, and allow black before the station went back on air?
bluecortina394 posts since 26 Jul 2012
wasn't there red phone linked directly to the IBA local transmitter(s)


The red phone system only linked the transmission control areas of the ITV stations together, the link to local transmitter site was usually a conventional 4 wire from the local ITV master control room to the transmitter site.

I have a vague recollection that the red phone may have extended to the ITA/IBA central offices. The 11am red phone call was to discuss future transmission planning which the ITA/IBA would have been interested in as it was , after all, their broadcast network. But I am not 100% sure on this last point, it was a long time ago so treat with caution.
Markymark4,178 posts since 13 Dec 2004
Meridian (North) South Today
I seem to recall reading somewhere, that during the IBA days, if a regional contractor sent back Black to the transmitter for 30 seconds, then the IBA, or the local transmitters, would then take over with the stand by caption, as detailed at the start of the clip.


That probably was the case, either black, or 'nothing' (in other words no sync pulses, VBI data etc etc).

I saw the IBA Apology caption pop up a few times over the years during the IBA's tenure on Southern and TVS, usually as a result of a technical fault at Northam, or on the link to Rowridge etc
Markymark4,178 posts since 13 Dec 2004
Meridian (North) South Today
On the transdiffusion youtube channel, is a video showing what happened during a small industrial dispute at Granada in Manchester. Basically, some electricians held a meeting with regards so a foreman getting a bouns. The dispute ran from 19:00 - 21:00. During this time, the ITV network couldn't show Coronation street, or World in action.

As a result, Granada was off air for those two hours, other regions showed different programmes to fill up the two half hour slots, as Granada couldn't network the shows.

How would the other ITV regions have dealt with such a short notice disruption?


Presumably transmission of C4 was unaffected in Granada's region, other than the commercial breaks not getting filled ?
Si-Co1,474 posts since 2 Oct 2003
Tyne Tees Look North (North East)
On the transdiffusion youtube channel, is a video showing what happened during a small industrial dispute at Granada in Manchester. Basically, some electricians held a meeting with regards so a foreman getting a bouns. The dispute ran from 19:00 - 21:00. During this time, the ITV network couldn't show Coronation street, or World in action.

As a result, Granada was off air for those two hours, other regions showed different programmes to fill up the two half hour slots, as Granada couldn't network the shows.

How would the other ITV regions have dealt with such a short notice disruption?


Presumably transmission of C4 was unaffected in Granada's region, other than the commercial breaks not getting filled ?


I would assume the C4 feed would have been switched to bypass Quay Street so the only affect on viewers would be the lack of ads. Or maybe it was just left as normal with nobody at Quay Street inserting ads. Same end result either way.

By the way, there's some Channel 4 continuity and trailers about that unscheduled Corrie omnibus here, at about 03:40 - but it's worth checking out the early Brookside trail before it too!

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Inspector Sands10,285 posts since 25 Aug 2004

I would assume the C4 feed would have been switched to bypass Quay Street so the only affect on viewers would be the lack of ads. Or maybe it was just left as normal with nobody at Quay Street inserting ads. Same end result either way.

Unless what the electrians turned off had channel 4 going through it.

What would electricians do on a day to day basis at an ITV company anyway? These days it's the sort of things that's just maintenance
bluecortina394 posts since 26 Jul 2012
Weren't they usually involved in studio lighting? I remember YTV doing a Calendar with just house lights due to an electricians' strike, which was subtitled in vision (presumably for the benefit of lip readers?).


Where I worked there were two distinct electrical departments: Lighting electricians who dealt with all matters relating to lighting (with the exception of the dimmer racks as that came under electronic maintenance), and the 'Electricians' who deadly with the rest of the building's electrical infrastructure - again not including anything electronic relating to the TV kit infrastructure. The 'Electricians' worked a 24hr shift system.