A History of the BBC in 100 Blog Posts: 1972.

On January 19th, 1972, the Edward Heath government announced the lifting of restrictions on broadcasting hours on television and radio. Although this led to BBC One's midday programming gaps becoming shorter and disappearing altogether by October of that year with the launch of Pebble Mill at One, BBC Two continued to close down for much of the afternoon, except for sporting events and political conferences, and it wasn't until September 19th, 1983, that afternoon closedowns would end. Over the next few years, various experiments in filling the schedule with educational content, US imports and films were tried, with gaps bridged by pages from Ceefax. Finally, in June 1989, BBC Two launched a full daytime service.

This makes the complaints about BBC Two returning to something akin to the earlier state of affairs very interesting. In today's schedule every program from 6:30 in the morning through 9 pm is a repeat followed by two hours of simulcast news between 10 am and midday. Then, after Politics Live, the repeats begin again until Marcus Wareing's Tales from a Kitchen Garden at 6:30pm.  On Monday night there's a block of quizzes (Mastermind, Only Connect and University Challenge) but with the exception of that and Newsnight, everything else is a repeat until 3:05 am when BBC News is simulcast until 6:30 am the following day. Having created the expectation for something to be broadcast, BBC Two is in the position of having to do just that.

Ways of Seeing

"It was an unlikely choice for BBC Two to schedule against Match of the Day. But Berger’s series and book now forms the bedrock of how we interpret art and advertising."
[The Guardian]

"Our first audience was one of fridges, cookers and washing machines."
[The Guardian]

A website with what looks like the contents of the programmes and ensuring book.
[Ways of Seeing]

"Released in 1972, "Ways of Seeing" has proven to be as worthy of study as the artistic traditions it investigates."
[Big Think]

"At the core of the project is an augmented reality application. When combined with a copy of the original Ways of Seeing book, this app uses computer vision to bring into being a new virtual text, which exists digitally between the pages of Berger’s original book."
[Lewis Bush]


"A history of Clacton-On-Sea."
[East Anglian Film Archive]

"Kenzie Thorpe recalls his life on the marshes of South Lincolnshire."
[East Anglian Film Archive][BBC Programme Index]

"The influence of the American bases on the cultural life of East Anglia."
[East Anglian Film Archive]

"In a fantastic rare extended interview at the NFT, the movie legend talks to Michael Parkinson about his career, changing his name to Kirk Douglas, and his admiration for Marlon Brando. Originally broadcast on 26 November 1972."
[BBC Clips]


"You can’t really include an elephant in the menage unless you have an elephant house, and stowage space for the howdah, living quarters for Gunga Din the mahout and, for preference, a nearby bamboo forest. This is one of the minor troubles at B.H. Edinburgh. There’s no storage space."
[BBC Scotland Newsletter via Transdiffusion]


"Daytime television scheduling is considered a fairly recent idea – ask most viewers when it began, and you’ll get widely varying answers. Did it start with “This Morning”? “Neighbours”? “Crown Court”? The answer is, none of these."

"David Capper interviews the public in Belfast about the BBC's plans for an inquiry programme."
[BBC Rewind]

"Some 50 years ago on Monday (4 April), John Craven hosted a TV first on BBC One: a news bulletin aimed at children."
[Press Gazette]

"I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue, recently voted ‘greatest radio comedy show of all time’ in a Radio Times poll, is 50 years old this month. Greg James unearths a bumper selection of clips and quips from half a century of the antidote to panel games, featuring many of the show’s most popular panellists and silliest rounds."
[BBC Clips]

"Before his death at the age of 86, Radio Times reflected on I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue with the great Barry Cryer."
[Radio Times]

"John Craven's Newsround burst onto screens in 1972, and on Monday 4 April the UK's longest-running news show for kids celebrates its 50th anniversary with some exciting new additions."
Includes interview with John Craven.
[Dock 10]

"Today marks 63 years since ‘The Day the Music Died’. In celebration of the brilliant musicians lost in the severe tragedy, we recapture the moment Don McLean performed his hit song ‘American Pie’ commemorating the day in 1972 live for the BBC."
[Far Out Magazine]

In depth discussion of the landmark drama starring Anthony Hopkins as Pierre.
[Ellen and Jim Have A Blog, Two]

"Three weeks into 1972 BBC1 began showing most of the stories skipped during the spring 1971 block of repeats. There's no obvious reason why these stories are suddenly acceptable for broadcast; just as it's still not clear why the episodes weren't repeated last year."
[Space Doubt]


"When I joined the BBC as a producer of Home Talks in 1947 one of the first BBC publications to come my way was the Year Book, as this Handbook was then called. The BBC was 25 years old, and it had just taken delivery of its third Royal Charter. Moreover, since the end of the war it had been coping with one of those massive upheavals which it inflicts upon itself from time to time for the good (it hopes) of its audience. The Television Service had re-opened. The Third Programme was brand new. There was a new Light Programme -and so on."
[World Radio History]