The Newsroom

ITN Nostalgia

ITN and ITV News Memories

IT
itsrobert Founding member Granada North West Today
When C4 News launched then did the ITV bulletins have to sacrifice space for them? I know in the 90s they shared a studio with News at Ten prior to the great news relaunches of 1999.


I'm not sure about initially, but I'm fairly sure Channel 4 News used to share a desk with News at Ten, even when they were at Wells Street. I think they used to re-dress it between bulletins.

Another anecdote concerning studios - I read somewhere that they were so short of space at Wells Street that there was nowhere to house Super Channel News when it launched in 1987. So, that used to come from a Portakabin on the roof!
MA
Markymark Meridian (Thames Valley) South Today
When C4 News launched then did the ITV bulletins have to sacrifice space for them? I know in the 90s they shared a studio with News at Ten prior to the great news relaunches of 1999.


I'm not sure about initially, but I'm fairly sure Channel 4 News used to share a desk with News at Ten, even when they were at Wells Street. I think they used to re-dress it between bulletins.



96/97ish NaT and C4 News did indeed share a studio, but the sets were separate and each side of that studio
IT
itsrobert Founding member Granada North West Today
When C4 News launched then did the ITV bulletins have to sacrifice space for them? I know in the 90s they shared a studio with News at Ten prior to the great news relaunches of 1999.


I'm not sure about initially, but I'm fairly sure Channel 4 News used to share a desk with News at Ten, even when they were at Wells Street. I think they used to re-dress it between bulletins.



96/97ish NaT and C4 News did indeed share a studio, but the sets were separate and each side of that studio


Thanks Markymark - I guess that was one of the perks of moving to Grays Inn Road - being able to build larger studios.

A bit of a potted history of studios at GIR - in the first years after they moved in at the end of 1990 there were 3 studios and 2 control rooms. Studios 1 and 2 (controlled by PCR1) were in the basement and I believe back then that the cameras had to be shuffled between the studios as required. Those studios housed programmes like the Lunchtime News, 540 News, News at Ten, C4 Daily, C4 News and, eventually things like The Time The Place. There was also Studio 3 (and PCR2) on the atrium that was used for weekend bulletins and eventually the Early Evening News and News at Ten for a while.

Then in 1995 News at Ten moved back down to the basement to share with Channel 4 News and Studio 3 was used - as can be seen in one of the videos I posted yesterday - for the daytime and weekend ITV bulletins, ITN World News and the Big Breakfast News bulletins. You can see in the video that there was a green curtain that could be pulled round in order to change the background and a gauze curtain to diffuse the newsroom background a bit.

The next change happened in 1997 when Studio 5 (and PCR5) was created for 5 News and then in 1999, Studio 6 (and PCR6) were created alongside the atrium for C4 News. They remain there until the present day. You might notice in the video above that Studio 6 was built on what was the ITN canteen!

Also in 1999, the ITV bulletins moved back down to the basement studio and Studio 3 remained in use only for the overnight summaries/Morning News. It eventually became Studio 4 in 2000 to house the ITN News Channel and a new control room was built, PCR4. PCR2 was mothballed until ITV London moved into Studio 4 in 2004. After the News Channel had moved down to the basement in 2002 and then eventually closed, PCR4 acted as the backup gallery for ITV News and eventually came back into use when 5 News returned in 2012.

Eventually, ITV London left Studio 4 and moved to share the basement with ITV News and so PCR2 was relocated to the basement to act as the backup control room. 5 News left GIR for a while and moved to the Northern & Shell building but eventually returned to GIR. It now comes from one of the basement studios (as does The Wright Stuff - the TWS set is built over the 5 News set and is struck and re-set every day). A new control room - PCR5 was built when 5 News returned again.

So that's as it stands at the moment. Two studios and three control rooms in the basement and Studio 6/PCR6 on the lower ground floor.

Hope I've got all that correct - feel free to jump in if I've missed something. Programmes, studios and control rooms at ITN have moved around so much over the years it's hard to keep track!
LV
LondonViewer London London
I’d recommend chapter 6 of this book for some ITN nostalgia. Covers the changing relationship with the ITV contractors & problems around 200 GIR move. Interesting read if you haven’t read it.

‘Independant Television in Britain: ITV & The IBA 1981-1992’

You can read most of the chapter on google books for free.
JW
JamesWorldNews Central World News
Thanks for those two video links, Rob. Fascinating overviews of all things ITN and the launch of their channel.
@JamesWorldNews | #StayHomeSaveLives
JW
JamesWorldNews Central World News
I believe this is the same studio used for News at Ten at the time? (1981)

@JamesWorldNews | #StayHomeSaveLives
JK
JKDerry Banned for 1 week UTV Newsline
I believe this is the same studio used for News at Ten at the time? (1981)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=htH4e8Bj22Y

In 1981 at Wells St there was only two studios, and most ITN News came from the larger main studio.
JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
Always found it interesting how when ITN moved from Wells Street to Gray's Inn Road they didn't refresh the sets or looks of any of the programmes, they just moved it all over lock stock and barrel and on screen, apart from the moving of the short bulletins to the newsroom (still using the same titles and music though!), it looked like nothing had changed at first.
IT
itsrobert Founding member Granada North West Today
Speaking of which, here's a 3-page article from the TV Times explaining how ITN packed up Wells Street and moved to GIR: http://starlogged.blogspot.com/2013/08/1991-itn-move-studios-from-tv-times.html
CH
chris Granada North West Today

I'm not sure about initially, but I'm fairly sure Channel 4 News used to share a desk with News at Ten, even when they were at Wells Street. I think they used to re-dress it between bulletins.



96/97ish NaT and C4 News did indeed share a studio, but the sets were separate and each side of that studio


Thanks Markymark - I guess that was one of the perks of moving to Grays Inn Road - being able to build larger studios.

A bit of a potted history of studios at GIR - in the first years after they moved in at the end of 1990 there were 3 studios and 2 control rooms. Studios 1 and 2 (controlled by PCR1) were in the basement and I believe back then that the cameras had to be shuffled between the studios as required. Those studios housed programmes like the Lunchtime News, 540 News, News at Ten, C4 Daily, C4 News and, eventually things like The Time The Place. There was also Studio 3 (and PCR2) on the atrium that was used for weekend bulletins and eventually the Early Evening News and News at Ten for a while.

Then in 1995 News at Ten moved back down to the basement to share with Channel 4 News and Studio 3 was used - as can be seen in one of the videos I posted yesterday - for the daytime and weekend ITV bulletins, ITN World News and the Big Breakfast News bulletins. You can see in the video that there was a green curtain that could be pulled round in order to change the background and a gauze curtain to diffuse the newsroom background a bit.

The next change happened in 1997 when Studio 5 (and PCR5) was created for 5 News and then in 1999, Studio 6 (and PCR6) were created alongside the atrium for C4 News. They remain there until the present day. You might notice in the video above that Studio 6 was built on what was the ITN canteen!

Also in 1999, the ITV bulletins moved back down to the basement studio and Studio 3 remained in use only for the overnight summaries/Morning News. It eventually became Studio 4 in 2000 to house the ITN News Channel and a new control room was built, PCR4. PCR2 was mothballed until ITV London moved into Studio 4 in 2004. After the News Channel had moved down to the basement in 2002 and then eventually closed, PCR4 acted as the backup gallery for ITV News and eventually came back into use when 5 News returned in 2012.

Eventually, ITV London left Studio 4 and moved to share the basement with ITV News and so PCR2 was relocated to the basement to act as the backup control room. 5 News left GIR for a while and moved to the Northern & Shell building but eventually returned to GIR. It now comes from one of the basement studios (as does The Wright Stuff - the TWS set is built over the 5 News set and is struck and re-set every day). A new control room - PCR5 was built when 5 News returned again.

So that's as it stands at the moment. Two studios and three control rooms in the basement and Studio 6/PCR6 on the lower ground floor.

Hope I've got all that correct - feel free to jump in if I've missed something. Programmes, studios and control rooms at ITN have moved around so much over the years it's hard to keep track!


And what was Studio 4 is the ITV News graphics department, and what was Studio 5 is now a cafe that anyone, in normal times, can visit.
BU
buster London London
Studio 5 went through a few changes actually - I think first in after 5 left to go to Sky was Big Game TV, then Setanta Sport News, then it became office space for a while but it's former use as a studio was still quite obvious when you looked.

The cafe mentioned above was part of the extension of the footprint of the front part of the building which seemed to take forever but finally opened last year, and has a coffee/food area that as mentioned is before you get to the security gates.
VA
valley
I've not worked at ITN but I have worked on occasion at GIR - at TRT World on the fifth floor. A studio converted from office space with very little grid height and two sets at opposite ends of the studio, with 5 cameras (no robotics in sight) and a 6ft Jimmy jib in there - bit of a weird setup altogether to be honest!

I believe it's changed somewhat since I was last there.

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