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Channel Television during the 1979 ITV Strike

How did it continue broadcasting? (June 2019)

JK
JKDerry UTV Newsline
Do we have any archive material of the schedules from Channel Television during the strike? I have seen two schedules and that is it. They ran from 5.00pm until 11.00pm each night - quite a feat for the little channel, with no videotape machines and having to fly cases of films to the St Helier studios every week during the strike.
SC
Si-Co Tyne Tees Look North (North East)
Isn't that down to the idea of 'nominated contractor' - having one region leading the network. If the usual one was off air surely that status would just move to another? AIUI the role did move outside London every so often to give the other big regions a bit of practise doing it


Both Central and Granada were quite active in feeding the network too (CITV and Schools passing through Central five times a week usually, and the morning schedule post-1988 always going through Quay Street).

As an aside, I wonder why ATV and later Central became responsible for networking the schools broadcasts in the late 60s - I think it was the responsibility of Associated Rediffusion prior to that.

Also - and more on topic - when a programme couldn’t be transmitted due to the originating company being on strike, why did the programme have to be replaced independently by each station? When Thames were on strike, Granada couldn’t decide to network something instead. I assume Channel was excepted from this rule, taking TSW’s local replacement programming in such cases? I’m trying to remember what viewers outside London actually saw instead of the many Thames programmes that were pre-empted during the 1984 disputes. Probably American dramas/comedies or repeats of UK shows? Companies like Central, Granada and YTV would have plenty of this kind of material, but what about the smaller players? Were they allowed to buy something in from one of the “big three” to show - assuming they weren’t allowed to make a local arrangement to latch onto their broadcasts?
CEEFAX SUBTITLES BEGIN SHORTLY
BR
Brekkie Wales Wales Today
Si-Co posted:


Also - and more on topic - when a programme couldn’t be transmitted due to the originating company being on strike, why did the programme have to be replaced independently by each station? When Thames were on strike, Granada couldn’t decide to network something instead.

Presumably the union members wouldn't have been willing to effectively break the strike by networking a replacement and respecting this meant the other regions stayed on air.
Turns out nobody had 2020 vision.
SP
Steve in Pudsey Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
Isn't that down to the idea of 'nominated contractor' - having one region leading the network. If the usual one was off air surely that status would just move to another? AIUI the role did move outside London every so often to give the other big regions a bit of practise doing it

Technically it wouldn't have been a problem, I was thinking more of whether the unions would have blocked it?
Write that down in your copybook now.
MA
Markymark Meridian (Thames Valley) South Today
Isn't that down to the idea of 'nominated contractor' - having one region leading the network. If the usual one was off air surely that status would just move to another? AIUI the role did move outside London every so often to give the other big regions a bit of practise doing it

Technically it wouldn't have been a problem, I was thinking more of whether the unions would have blocked it?


I think as the GPO were the official agent for ITV routing and switching it probably wasn't an issue. If anything you might have expected the GPO to grumble about Thames and LWT doing that instead!
MA
Markymark Meridian (Thames Valley) South Today
Si-Co posted:


As an aside, I wonder why ATV and later Central became responsible for networking the schools broadcasts in the late 60s - I think it was the responsibility of Associated Rediffusion prior to that.



It might have been because ATV produced the vast bulk of schools programming from 1968?
JF
JonF Anglia (West) Look East
"I’m trying to remember what viewers outside London actually saw instead of the many Thames programmes that were pre-empted during the 1984 disputes. Probably American dramas/comedies or repeats of UK shows?"


Hello, my first post and I joined to contribute an answer. In the Anglia region on the first Thursday of the 1984 Thames dispute the whole evening from 7:30pm to 10pm was to be supplied by Thames. Anglia kept it simple and played the film, "The Man Who Would Be King". I remember they had at least one break in transmission due to a playout problem. I also never made it to the end of the film and never seen it since.
IS
Inspector Sands
Tonights Central News had a report about the 1979 ITV strike:
BR
Brekkie Wales Wales Today
Brilliant report - is it one that aired in other regions?

When would that Welcome Home to ITV promo have been made considering the strike action in progress?
Turns out nobody had 2020 vision.
NL
Ne1L C Recently warned Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
Outstanding.
SP
Steve in Pudsey Yorkshire Look North (Yorkshire)
I think it's been said that the Welcome Home promo was done by an outside company, hence why it was a still rather than an animation sequence - there was nobody at ITV to transfer it to a transmittable format.

There was some surprise expressed - quite possibly by Tony Currie - that the unions allowed that.
Write that down in your copybook now.
IS
Inspector Sands
I think it's been said that the Welcome Home promo was done by an outside company, hence why it was a still rather than an animation sequence - there was nobody at ITV to transfer it to a transmittable format.

It was shown animated, on the beginning of the menu trailer after the news

Presumably someone made that either at sometime during the strike or as soon as it was agreed when they were returning and what with

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