Program listings reveal BBC’s 100-year-old history broadcasting ‘for the first time’

Lists of programs pioneered in the early days of the BBC, from the first weather forecast to the first sports commentary, are being published online.

His online BBC Program Index provides lists dating back to the company’s first broadcast date 100 years ago on 14 November 1922.

Searchable database with newly assembled lists now includes a comprehensive record of known programs that aired from November 1922 until the publication of the first Radio Times in September in 1923.

This includes lists from BBC’s first radio stations: 2LO in London, 2ZY in Manchester, 5IT from Birmingham, 5NO from Newcastle, 5WA from Cardiff and 5SC from Glasgow.

So far, the full list from the first year has barely been available to view in one place.

A BBC spokesman said: “The listings include some of the BBC’s ‘firsts’, including first weather forecasts, first sports commentary, first live concerts, the first outside broadcast and the first radio program for children.

“They also released news of the first election falling on day two of the broadcast, the day the country went to the polls to elect a Conservative government led by Bonar Law.”

He added: “In the early days of broadcasting, there were very few rules or standards to follow, and the list shows BBC pioneers innovating, experimenting and organizing their output into language. broadcasting language.

“An example of this is, in the early days, bulletins were read twice – once fast and once slow – and listeners were asked to write according to their preferences.”

The first detailed list of sports commentary involved Mr. ES King, secretary of West Ham United Football Club – that year’s English Cup finalist against Bolton Wanderers – giving the article. The first sports talk, “Our Promising Wembley”, was on April 20, 1923.

The first weather bulletin was broadcast on 14 January 1923 from Manchester and the first election bulletin was produced on 15 November 1922, when no broadcast was held before 5pm or after 1am. so as not to influence the press.

Sir William Noble, chairman of BBCo (British Television Company) was quoted in a newspaper as saying: “We hope that many people will enter broadcasting who may not be so interested in broadcasting. world news, and that, by giving them a brief summary of events, we will stimulate their appetite for news and thus make them buy more newspapers. “

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Robert Seatter, head of BBC History, said: “As we mark the original BBC broadcast a hundred years ago, we provide for the first time a published list of the earliest radio programmes. from 1922 to 1923.

“It paints a vivid picture of the evolution of broadcasting as well as captures a unique snapshot of the UK’s socio-historical landscape.”

The list can be found at: Program listings reveal BBC’s 100-year-old history broadcasting ‘for the first time’

Fry Electronics Team

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