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ToasterMan (previously BeanosOnToast) 167 posts since 17 Feb 2016
Granada North West Today
Anyone here got memories of BBC Prime or BBC Entertainment from their holidays? I remember viewing BBC Prime on a family holiday to Turkey back in 2005, the idents at 1:39 are the ones I remember seeing, which I rather liked, with their vibrant images of fireworks resembling British iconography and soundtracks that seamlessly synced with the visuals:


I also remember the overnight educational strand, BBC Learning, and their idents featuring a box-man mascot that wondered in an emerald green void, there was also a dedicated CBBC Prime strand, which I remember aired CBeebies programming, even after CBeebies was introduced, but they did introduce CBeebies to BBC Prime about late 2006:



As for BBC Entertainment, the only recollections of the channel I have are from my first holiday to Sorrento, Italy in August 2011, during the middle of the Doctor Who Christmas special, The Runaway Bride, until my brother changed the channel... There doesn't seem to be many clips from either channel, I imagine because the channels were broadcast in SECAM instead of PAL.
Last edited by ToasterMan on 27 March 2020 1:23pm - 3 times in total
ToasterMan (previously BeanosOnToast) 167 posts since 17 Feb 2016
Granada North West Today
Well I worked on BBC Prime back in the day so any questions fire away and I’ll try and answer them 🙂 (I was also involved in the launch of the ‘fireworks’ idents you refer to which was actually called “Festival”.)

Aah great, in that case, I have several! Very Happy

Firstly: how was CBBC Prime run? The links were set in Pres A and later TC9 and 10: I imagine they were pre recorded ala CBBC on Choice/CBeebies and sent from TVC? In the early years, they seemed to air a lot more recent programming than later on when they just broadcast pre-school shows. I know because of the reliance of repeats, many British expats bought digital satellite and cable to access BBC One and Two for the first time outside of the UK.



Also, when CBBC relaunched in February 2002, did Prime adopt the new bug idents later or bang on February 11th, since I know the international BBC channels were over a month behind in switching to the new corporate logo in 1997, and was the CBeebies strand a simulcast of the CBeebies Channel back home in England?

Finally; about the late 2000 and BBC Learning idents, who produced them and the glorious accompanying soundtracks? Smile
Last edited by ToasterMan on 26 March 2020 4:05pm
nwtv20038,515 posts since 5 Jan 2003
Granada North West Today
In 2007/8, I stayed in Hungary for a couple of weeks and had access to BBC Prime as it was available on basic Cable and was one of the only 2 or 3 channels that I could watch in English. To my surprise almost every programme had Hungarian subtitles burnt on screen. It had an odd schedule at that time as it had up to date EastEnders, but was also showing Series 1/2 episodes of Only Fools and Horses.

This was around the time that I believe Prime was being phased out in favour BBC Entertainment.
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VMPhil10,217 posts since 31 Mar 2005
Granada North West Today
The BBC Learning ident is interesting… that was the original pre-launch name for BBC Knowledge (the UK channel)

The only evidence of BBC Learning I could find was this poster featuring; surprise, surprise: the Teletubbies, from a BBC News article about the launch of it and sister channel, BBC Choice:

*

The only other appearance of it is in a Martin Lambie-Nairn internal BBC presentation about the 1997 revamp (seen here). It includes some mock-ups of what the new branding would look like on BBC Learning and BBC Sport channels.

*
* *
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Ne1L C1,577 posts since 11 Sep 2011
I used to read "Satellite TV Europe" (anyone remember that magazine?) and I always got the impression that BBC Prime acted as a reminder of home to ex pats or military personnel. AISTR it was broadcast on Intelsat which seemed as far away as me as Astra seemed as close if that makes any sense
Here's a collection of clean BBC Prime idents and assorted presentation I had buried on an old SVCD (hands up who remembers those!)

https://we.tl/t-ac3f8596c8

Enjoy! I've also got similar channel idents for BBC World from the same time if anyone would like me to upload those as well?



I remember VCD. I once bought a magazine with the first episode of Minder on VCD!
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deejay2,974 posts since 5 Jan 2003
Central (South) Oxford
Well I worked on BBC Prime back in the day so any questions fire away and I’ll try and answer them 🙂 (I was also involved in the launch of the ‘fireworks’ idents you refer to which was actually called “Festival”.)

Aah great, in that case, I have several! Very Happy

Firstly: how was CBBC Prime run? The links were set in Pres A and later TC9 and 10: I imagine they were pre recorded ala CBBC on Choice/CBeebies and sent from TVC? In the early years, they seemed to air a lot more recent programming than later on when they just broadcast pre-school shows. I know because of the reliance of repeats, many British expats bought digital satellite and cable to access BBC One and BBC Two for the first time outside of the UK.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sue3Ht-Uva0
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UBAEv6Js5tY

Also, when CBBC relaunched in February 2002, did Prime adopt the new bug idents later or bang on February 11th, since I know the international BBC channels were over a month behind in switching to the new corporate logo in 1997, and was the CBeebies strand a simulcast of the CBeebies Channel back home in England?

Finally; about the late 2000 and BBC Learning idents, who produced them and the glorious accompanying soundtracks? Smile


I worked in presentation for World and Prime 1998-2003, so that’s when my knowledge is rooted.

CBBC PRIME
The kids links were recorded in TC9 and previously Pres A and delivered weekly (I think) on tape. Prime presentation was also in TV Centre at the time I worked there. There were also generic links which were used for episode or schedule changes, plus they may have been all generic at the weekend. It’s a long time ago now! I think when cbbc and CBeebies launched in the U.K., prime rebranded as well but I don’t recall if it was just CBBC branded with CBeebies programming ..? There was no live simulcasting that I remember.
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ToasterMan (previously BeanosOnToast) 167 posts since 17 Feb 2016
Granada North West Today

I worked in presentation for World and Prime 1998-2003, so that’s when my knowledge is rooted.

CBBC PRIME
The kids links were recorded in TC9 and previously Pres A and delivered weekly (I think) on tape. Prime presentation was also in TV Centre at the time I worked there. There were also generic links which were used for episode or schedule changes, plus they may have been all generic at the weekend. It’s a long time ago now! I think when cbbc and CBeebies launched in the U.K., prime rebranded as well but I don’t recall if it was just CBBC branded with CBeebies programming ..? There was no live simulcasting that I remember.

It was the former! Here's an example from early 2006:

http://ppfiles.meldrum.co.uk/files/mp4/Prime.wmv.mp4
Last edited by ToasterMan on 25 March 2020 11:04pm
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deejay2,974 posts since 5 Jan 2003
Central (South) Oxford
I’d completely forgotten about BBC Learning replacing prime’s edition of BBC Learning Zone! Originally Prime’s learning zone used to contain certain elements simulcast with BBC 2.

Prime was, before 1998, a much more complex channel to run, as it took various programmes live from BBC 1 and 2, plus news programmes from BBC World. It was considered quite a skilled channel to be a director on, because you worked on your own, loading tapes manually and liaising with the directors in the other channels to work out how you might get from one show to another. It required a great degree of maths, planning and nerves of steel at times when you were, for example, taking one live programme from BBC 1 and taking the next one live from BBC 2. At the BBC programmes don’t always finish on time - they work to an off air time but it’s not necessarily going to be second accurate. (Some programmes like Noels House Party were notorious for being totally unpredictable).

Sadly (for me) by the time I started, the channel had dropped all bar a dozen or so live “national event programmes” per year. These were things like State Opening of Parliament, The Cenotaph, Children in Need, A few Christmas things and the Eurovision Song Contest.
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