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Sunday morning TV memories

Saturdays more forgotten partner in crime (June 2019)

RI
Riaz
Sundays mornings were good if you were looking for certain niche programmes although IMO ITV was marred by Morning Worship (who exactly watched this?) but kids generally got a raw deal as programmes for them were just a few islands in a sea of random and sometimes religious stuff.

Things started getting interesting in the 90s when (kids?!) satellite and cable channels started getting popular...
NL
Ne1L C Recently warned Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
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HC
Hatton Cross Central (West) Midlands Today
Religious programming on a Sunday morning, was a attention grabber to the ITC at licence renewal time. Just like 'Highway' at 6.40 was on a Sunday evening for years - although that also had the advantage of getting the smaller ITV companies to clock up the network peak hours production programming quota, so a double ticked box.
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MA
Markymark Meridian (Thames Valley) South Today
Religious programming on a Sunday morning, was a attention grabber to the ITC at licence renewal time. Just like 'Highway' at 6.40 was on a Sunday evening for years - although that also had the advantage of getting the smaller ITV companies to clock up the network peak hours production programming quota, so a double ticked box.


Yes, the so called 18:40 to 19:15 hrs 'God Slot' on BBC 1 and ITV. BBC 1 normally showed Songs of Praise.

It ensured the Money Programme on BBC 2 against them both got a high audience (for BBC 2), and
for years the 'main event' evening schedule 'kick off' time for all three channels was 19:15
RI
Riaz
Religious programming on a Sunday morning, was a attention grabber to the ITC at licence renewal time. Just like 'Highway' at 6.40 was on a Sunday evening for years - although that also had the advantage of getting the smaller ITV companies to clock up the network peak hours production programming quota, so a double ticked box.


I have wondered whether there was an assumption by the government that after the 25% from indies rule for ITV was implemented then around 90% of all religious programmes shown by ITV would be produced by indies instead of ITV companies themselves.

Religious programmes have often been amongst the least popular with the public and IMO most of those shown during the 1980s and 90s have left much to be desired.

Apart from televising major events like Easter Sunday and Remembrance Sunday services I never really understood the rationale behind Morning Worship 52 times a year.
JK
JKDerry UTV Newsline
Riaz posted:
Religious programming on a Sunday morning, was a attention grabber to the ITC at licence renewal time. Just like 'Highway' at 6.40 was on a Sunday evening for years - although that also had the advantage of getting the smaller ITV companies to clock up the network peak hours production programming quota, so a double ticked box.


I have wondered whether there was an assumption by the government that after the 25% from indies rule for ITV was implemented then around 90% of all religious programmes shown by ITV would be produced by indies instead of ITV companies themselves.

Religious programmes have often been amongst the least popular with the public and IMO most of those shown during the 1980s and 90s have left much to be desired.

Apart from televising major events like Easter Sunday and Remembrance Sunday services I never really understood the rationale behind Morning Worship 52 times a year.

For a little perspective. Religious programming was a hangover from the days before broadcasting hours limits were lifted in 1972.

Some might not know, but it was only in 1958 that both the BBC and ITV were allowed to air programming from 6.00pm-7.30pm on Sunday nights. The churches ensured the BBC and ITV didn't air any programming then on a Sunday early evening, to ensure people would go to a Sunday evening service.

In 1958 a compromise was reached, and the Postmaster General decreed that programming could air then, but it had to be religious programming, and ITV could not sell advertising during the slot, which became known as the "God Slot".

One of the good things Edward Heath's government did was in 1972 he lifted all restrictions on broadcasting hours. Once again, people seem to forget or not realise, until 1972, broadcasting hours was really limited by the government. 8 hours of normal programming per day - that 8 hours was generous, as it used to be just 5 hours a day in the early 1950s, later 7 hours a day with the launch of ITV in 1955.

Schools, adult education and of course religion were exempt from the limits, and so religion was a huge way both BBC and ITV could fill hours for "free" without intruding into their ration of normal hours each Sunday.

From 1972 onward, even though the broadcasting hours restrictions were lifted, religious programming remained a firm part, as it was one of the carrot and stick approach by the authority, have freedom of schedules, but in return provide a quota of hours per year of religious programming, which both BBC and ITV duly obliged.

1st January 1993 was really the start of the end of religious programming remits, especially for ITV under the new Broadcasting Act.
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JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
If anything, it seems suprising that ITV were broadcasting Sunday morning hymns into the mid-00s. Until they put repeats of Celebrity Wrestling in that slot instead.
NJ
Neil Jones Founding member Central (West) Midlands Today
I'm sure Harry Secombe propped up the last bastions of religious programming on ITV at least, he did Highway for best part of ten years which went out on Sunday nights and when that finished, it was replaced with (it says here) a Sunday morning programme. Apparently the dropping of Highway generated 1400 complaints.
NT
Night Thoughts London London
Here's an LWT one from 1986 - Wake Up London!, a whats-on type show with The Vicious Boys.



(And here's the last ever one from 1988, with a young Doon Mackichan and then-comedy partner Anne Rabbitt - these two completely passed me by at the time: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YIzwAvHjWkc)
Last edited by Night Thoughts on 24 June 2019 1:32am - 2 times in total
NT
Night Thoughts London London
Religious programming on a Sunday morning, was a attention grabber to the ITC at licence renewal time. Just like 'Highway' at 6.40 was on a Sunday evening for years - although that also had the advantage of getting the smaller ITV companies to clock up the network peak hours production programming quota, so a double ticked box.


Yes, the so called 18:40 to 19:15 hrs 'God Slot' on BBC 1 and ITV. BBC 1 normally showed Songs of Praise.

It ensured the Money Programme on BBC 2 against them both got a high audience (for BBC 2), and
for years the 'main event' evening schedule 'kick off' time for all three channels was 19:15


And there was me thinking my parents were interested in matters financial!

I think BBC2's subtitled News Review was also on in/around that time on a Sunday too. (The theme music has popped up again on BBC2's The TV That Made Me.)

RI
Riaz

Yes, the so called 18:40 to 19:15 hrs 'God Slot' on BBC 1 and ITV. BBC 1 normally showed Songs of Praise.

It ensured the Money Programme on BBC 2 against them both got a high audience (for BBC 2), and
for years the 'main event' evening schedule 'kick off' time for all three channels was 19:15


Cynics argue that The Money Programme was shown back to back with religious programmes on two channels because a large number of people (in Britain at least) worship money!
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RI
Riaz
For a little perspective. Religious programming was a hangover from the days before broadcasting hours limits were lifted in 1972.

Schools, adult education and of course religion were exempt from the limits, and so religion was a huge way both BBC and ITV could fill hours for "free" without intruding into their ration of normal hours each Sunday.


Interesting...

Quote:
1st January 1993 was really the start of the end of religious programming remits, especially for ITV under the new Broadcasting Act.


One would (or even should) have expected that the production of religious programming would be amongst the first to be outsourced to indies in order to improve the quality and diversity of the programmes themselves and to relieve ITV companies from the hassle of having to create such programmes themselves.

In a discussion from many years ago there was criticism levelled at the heavy bias of ITV religious programmes towards (Anglican) Christianity, and questioning whether it really was sensible for the smaller ITV companies to have the responsibility of producing a high proportion of religious programming due to the small number of people who follow non-Christian religions, along with non-Christian places of worship, in their territories, even though religious programmes were a rare opportunity for them to produce something for the network. It was then later argued that the only workable way to increase the variety of religious programmes and the diversity of religions represented would be for (the big?) ITV companies to outsource production to indies.

In hindsight, the start of the end of religious programming remits for ITV in 1993 partially diminishes the logic and rationale behind the 25% from indies rule. This is because it works best for programmes that:

ITV companies don't like to produce themselves.
ITV companies aren't very good at producing themselves.
Are low budget.
Are niche or specialist interest.
Are not very profitable for ITV companies.

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