Big Centre Television

The Story of Children’s Television

During the late Summer of 2015 an exhibition was staged at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum in Coventry entitled “The Story of Children’s Televison from 1946 to Today”. Can you imagine if I was to attempt a programme which reflected that title – I’d want to include absolutely EVERYTHING, and there’d never be enough time in the world. As it was, I was asked to go along to the exhibition, do the tour, interview the curator and make a nice half hour programme about it.

This is of course right up my street, I’m a big kid at heart and as you’ll see during the programme, I wear my Blue Peter Badge with pride (I got it when I was 10 years old for drawing a picture of Cliff Richard on the Blue Peter ship – his birthday falls 2 days away from Blue Peter’s, though he’s 18 years older!)

So off we went, and I was as happy as the proverbial kid-in-a-candy-store!

I’m so glad we managed to include most of what was on display in the exhibition when we visited on 19th August 2015, it was absolutely smashing to take a look at what was on display, plus I managed to get up close and personal with Sooty and Sweep – a childhood dream come true. What you can’t see in that particular sequence is the group of small children who had just been playing with Sooty and Sweep. Their eyes lit up when they saw me sit down with Sooty and talk to him for real in front of a real life TV camera!

Thanks to cameraman Adrian Bloomer, and trusty editor Dan Woodward for working on this programme with me.

I gather that the exhibition went on a UK tour a couple of months after we filmed there, and if you happen to have any memories of it, do let me know, and I’ll add them to this page.

This article, along with various others in my website are part of the wider story of Big Centre Television as seen from the perspective of the programmes I was making at the time. Most of the articles contain a video gallery of the original shows that I made.

I was with Big Centre Television from the very first day of production in January 2015 until the last of the original team were made redundant in November 2017 when the bulk of production and operations were being moved up to Leeds, the HQ of Made TV with whom Big Centre had merged in October 2016. Big Centre had a wonderful team all the way through, I miss them all and I remain really proud of what we ultimately achieved.

Contents (click an entry to go to that page)

  1. The Beginning
  2. Spring 2015 - An (Early) Day In The Life
  3. July/August 2015: Postbag
  4. Summer 2015 - Reading The Television News
  5. Summer 2015: Crossroads Check-In
  6. Summer 2015: Tiswas Pies Again! (new 8th July 2022)
  7. August 2015: The Story of Children's Television
  8. Bloopers and Behind the Scenes
  9. Autumn 2015: The Big Centre Magazine
  10. Winter 2015: The Midland – Weekend Edition
  11. Continuity - The Bits Between TV Programmes
  12. Spring/Summer 2016: The Big Magazine
  13. Autumn 2016 - Spring 2017: Weekend Magazine (Walsall)
  14. Promotional Trailers
  15. Summer 2017: Weekend Magazine (Birmingham)
  16. Autumn 2017: Community Noticeboard... and The End...

As time goes on, I'll be filling in some of the gaps as well as adding more to these existing parts of the story too. If there's anything missing, or you'd like me to talk about something in particular, send me a message on social media (see the very top or very bottom of this page) or contact me through the website.