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30 years since the start of Operation Desert Storm

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BC
Blake Connolly Founding member London London
Any chance that clip could've been from BBC 2, perhaps? Would explain why the caption said the news was on BBC 1 "now". At that time BBC 2 would normally open at 8am with 15 minutes of Breakfast News, albeit signed.
jonO, Roger Darthwell and buster gave kudos
BU
buster London London
Any chance that clip could've been from BBC 2, perhaps? Would explain why the caption said the news was on BBC 1 "now". At that time BBC 2 would normally open at 8am with 15 minutes of Breakfast News, albeit signed.


Yes that could well be it! The lengthy black after the menu could also be them waiting for the headline sequence as they may not have had an exact join time available to them at 7am.
BU
buster London London
Not very well titled this video, but this is the newsflash the previous night. Is that the 6 O’Clock News set that has been redressed? (going by the blue of the desk)

TI
timbouk
I remember watching a repeat of Dads Army on I think on Tuesday night the following week which was on BBC1. They faded out the air raid sirens the end to go to a news flash about the first scuds being fired at Israel.
JA
james-2001 Central (East) East Midlands Today
CNN's live coverage of the outbreak of war https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vn8mfg_oEz4


Young(er) Wolf Blitzer in there, someone who's come into their own again recently.
IS
Inspector Sands
A classic example there of going to a press conference only to find that it's all over
JB
JexedBack South East Today
I’m sure TV-am with Mike Morris and Lorraine Kelly was presented from behind the news desk, rather than the sofa, for the first few days of one of the Gulf Wars.
SO
Soupnzi London London
I’m sure TV-am with Mike Morris and Lorraine Kelly was presented from behind the news desk, rather than the sofa, for the first few days of one of the Gulf Wars.
I don’t remember a desk, but they inserted a map on a sort of pillar at the junction of the two sofas. Mike Morris was given a pointy stick too
PA
paul_hadley London London
Not forgetting this of course...

JO
johnnyboy Founding member Tyne Tees Look North (North East)


IIRC, the hourly bulletins on BBC1 during the morning and BBC2 in the afternoon adopted a new look which survived well after the end of the war, perhaps even to the introduction of the virtual newsroom two years later.

It may have been a little bit tweaked following ceasefure though - I can't quite remember. It's 30 years ago Crying or Very sad
Last edited by johnnyboy on 18 January 2021 7:52am
OFCOM's queen bitch
SW
Steve Williams
On BBC2 that day there were all the programmes that were planned to go on BBC1! Even though that day Top Of The Pops was not aired, but yeah 30 years ago today BBC1 basically turned into a rolling news channel, also BBC Radio 4's FM frequencies were turned into Radio 4 News FM, also nicknamed Scud FM


Not all the BBC1 line-up moved to BBC2 that day, but as mentioned in the video, Crimewatch was moved over. There's a famous story about that because it replaces Forty Minutes, and someone had recorded Forty Minutes, found they'd got Crimewatch instead and decided to watch it anyway, and it turned out they had some vital information on a case that was pivotal in solving it - all thanks to it being moved to BBC2. Top of the Pops ended up on Saturday teatime in the end.

The rolling Dimbleby during the day continued for quite a while, CBBC was on BBC2 for about a month, and for a while the only programmes that interrupted the Gulf coverage on BBC1 were Neighbours and Playbus, and I remember on Points of View there were complaints that the picture of Saddam Hussein behind David Dimbleby was scaring the children waiting for Playbus. It rather did for Daytime UK, the Beeb's big new daytime concept that had launched the previous autumn, as it massively disrupted that for several weeks.

I remember in the first weekend Breakfast News was on the Saturday, and also they did a bulletin at 10am during Going Live, which rather freaked me out at the time as I didn't know they were going to do it (I remember, Pip saying they'd be back shortly and then getting faded out). I think for my generation the start of the Gulf War was a bit scary as it was the first war I was conscious of (obviously there were plenty of conflicts going on around the world, but it was the first one I recalled involving Britain, as I'd been too young to register the Falklands War) and I think that, certainly for me (though I was a terrible prissy kid scared of everything), the fact it happened not long after the fiftieth anniversary of World War II made it seem a bit scarier because we'd seen a lot of stuff about that quite recently and so the idea of things like evacuation were on my mind a bit. I was a great kid.

After the first week there were hourly news bulletins at the weekend, at 7am, 8am and 9am, though they weren't billed in the Radio Times until the war had actually ended and they'd already stopped. I remember Walden on ITV had been renamed as War In The Gulf, and when the war was over it carried on for a bit, renamed Peace In The Gulf, funnily enough.

Scud FM was very popular, I know they said that when the Downing Street bomb went off during it they were getting like a 50% audience share. But there was much debate at the time about Radio 4 being overwhelmed with news, with everyone making other programmes concerned Radio 4 was going to turn into a full-time news channel, and so they managed to get assurances that it would end the second the war was over, which it did. The next year they did something very similiar for the election, this time on LW, when they had Campaign Report running for a couple of hours in the morning and again in the afternoon, but they were at pains to suggest this absolutely wasn't a rolling news service and to that end it was devoted to the election and absolutely nothing but, and they weren't permitted to talk about any other news.

Not very well titled this video, but this is the newsflash the previous night. Is that the 6 O’Clock News set that has been redressed? (going by the blue of the desk)


The newsflash interrupting the film Villain, there. As we know, from that fascinating documentary, the newsflash on ITV interrupted Midweek Sports Special, as famously recorded in Nick Hornby's Fever Pitch. One of my favourite bits of the book, that. It's a fascinating chapter, Hornby says "Football fans knew before anyone else the Gulf War had started" and that "Nick Owen looked at his screen, announced a newsflash and expressed his hope we'd return to the football shortly" (they didn't), and then discusses how everyone was quite scared that week and that at the match on Saturday they were all initially a bit distracted but by the end of it they'd all forgotten about it and there were already chants going round about how "Saddam runs from Arsenal".

I remember watching a repeat of Dads Army on I think on Tuesday night the following week which was on BBC1. They faded out the air raid sirens the end to go to a news flash about the first scuds being fired at Israel.


That happened quite a lot in the first week or so, programmes being faded out early during the credits to squeeze in a few extra newsflashes. I remember watching The Ronn Lucas Show on ITV, the series for the ventriloquist who was a bit of a draw for a couple of years, and when he said goodnight it faded straight to the Thames endcap.
TI
timbouk
It does seem crazy that BBC1 closed down at around 3am in the first night and went to Ceefax. If I remember ITV stayed with rolling news through the night until TVAM took over at 6am. Not sure what channel 4 did that night but for the first few weeks they did have a news special every night around midnight. As most news reports were pool reporters I remember Kate Adie doing a live into Sky News that morning when BBC1 was showing ceefax.

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