A British Library Folio (13).

Books  A couple of weeks ago I had the privilege of being in the audience for a live recording of Greg Jenner's Radio 4 podcast You're Dead To Me at the Shakespeare North Playhouse in Prescot.  Not having listened before I didn't really know what to expect and it was mostly a chance to see the new theatre without the distraction of having to watch a play and acting.  The guests were Professor Farah Karim-Cooper, Professor of Shakespeare Studies at King’s College London and Co-Director of Education & Research at Shakespeare’s Globe, and the comedian Richard Herring.

The podcast, which you can listen to here, offered the bare bones of Shakespeare's biography and some of the publishing history of the First Folio and there wasn't much about either that didn't already know.  But I did find out that Richard Herring only has one testicle, which was funny when he mentioned it on stage but is of course very serious because his other ball was removed because of testicular cancer, which he talked about in an interview around this time last year which is posted on his website.  Richard also talks about the podcast on his blog and some of the retakes that were needed to make it clean for radio broadcast.

After the show, a queue quickly built up towards the theatre's exhibition area because on tour and on display is the Grenville First Folio.  Usually on display in the British Library, where I originally saw it back in 2016, I'd completely forgotten it was going to be in Prescot (my memory is terrible these days).  So after a pretty decent coffee in the on-site cafe and a visit to the shop to let the crowds dissipate, I wandered down into the now nearly empty display space to have another look.  It's pretty sparse, mostly information boards offering some background and an introductory video projected on the wall.

It's commonly called the Grenville Folio because the long-time Member of Parliament and First Lord of the Admiralty Thomas Grenville bequeathed it to the library on his death. Still, he wasn't the first known owner of the volume.  As Eric Rasmussen's The Shakespeare First Folios: A Descriptive Catalogue describes, that would be Dr John Monroe a physician at Bethlehem Hospital who sold it to James Midgely, Jr at a Sotheby's sale for £13 13s who then sold it in 1818 to Grenville via a bookseller for what was then the record price of 116 guineas, around £10,000 in today's money.  

The Folio was amongst 20,000 books that were passed to the British Library almost all of which had been rebound by Grenville as they entered his collection much to the annoyance of later scholars who wonder what information they might have gleaned from the discarded pieces.  Presented on a transparent display lectern, the binding which Rasmussen describes as "sumptuous full goatskin stamped with a coat of arms" does stand out from some of the more somber bindings I've seen but also doesn't quite fit the pages it contains.

As is customary in these kinds of displays, there isn't much to see, it's about being the presence of the book.  Just as it is in the British Library, it's open on the frontispiece and the Droeshout engraving of Shakespeare's portrait with Ben Jonson's To The Reader opposite which ironically means that none of the playwright's own words are being shown.  Neither is the note with Grenville left on the first leaf which says "This first edition of Shakespeare is an original and perfect copy, and was purchased by me in it’s first binding & in it’s original state. T.G.".  Grenville wanted to leave no doubt about his ownership.

A History of the BBC in 100 Blog Posts: 1982.

As there always seems to be, there were a few historic moments in 1982.  After 32 years on the air, Listen With Mother completes its run having already transferred to BBC Radio 4.  S4C is founded and much of the BBC's Welsh programming moves there.  Regional opt-outs finally end on Radio 4 with the launches of Radio Devon and Radio Cornwall.  The BBC World Service is finally officially available in the UK, albeit just in the south-east.  New home grown shows include Wogan, Odd One Out, Food and Drink, Timewatch, The Young Ones, Eureka, Smiley's People and Boys From The Blackstuff (pictured).  It's also the year when BBC Two receives its first proper commercial competition in the form of Channel 4.

That was in November, I was eight years old and its fair to say that for a good few years afterwards, much of my viewing moved to the fourth channel, especially at the weekends.  But having had a glance at the schedules for this day twenty one years ago, there's no doubt I would have spent it in the company of the BBC.  It's Saturday and unless I was out, which let's face it was unlikely, the TV would have been tuned to BBC One at 9:30 in the morning for Saturday Superstore and remained there for the rest of the day, through Grandstand, The Dukes of Hazard, The Late-Late Breakfast Show, Blankety Blank, Juliet Bravo and The Paul Daniels Magic Show which is probably about the time I went to bed missing out on the Doris Day film and Carrot's Lib.


"This series looked at all major aspects of computing, using a naive presenter (Chris Serle) and a computer expert - Ian McNaught Davis. The programmes consisted of a lively mix of real life examples of computers in use - at how they work and what they're used for, both at high and low level, and explaining principles - often by analogy."
[BBC Computer Literacy Project Archive]

"BBC documentary examining social developments in the new town of Harlow."
[East Anglian Film Archive][BBC Programme Archive]

"A BBC documentary examining the changing face of Norwich."
[East Anglian Film Archive][BBC Programme Archive]

"This Audio Arts published cassette supplement, recorded in 1983, contains a recording of Bill Johnson's soundwork, Everybody's Doing It (The Neo Nicky Nacky Noo Department). Also includes a section of an interview with Bruce McLean from a Walters Weekly Radio Broadcast (BBC Radio 1) 'cut up' and with added music by Bill Johnson, 1982."


"The Observer's diarist discovers why Terry Wogan, Radio 2's genial broadcaster, is hot property."
[The Observer]

"The Queen’s theme for her broadcast in 1982 was the important role the sea has played in the life of Britain and the Commonwealth. But what the 50 million viewers around the world did not know was that while she was speaking of the sea, the sky was playing an important if totally unhelpful role in her own life."


"Terry Wogan decides it's time to check up on Auntie after 60 years of broadcasting. Behind the scenes at the BBC Terry stalks the corridors of power and lurks in some of the most remote byways of the Corporation. En route Terry goes in search of the BBC ghost, he meets Johnners and Fredders in the commentary box at The Oval, he watches Egypt arrive in Shepherd's Bush and discovers the world-famous BBC sandpit in Dorset."
[Paul Middleton]


"Even at the time, it was fair to say British television’s early efforts to get to grips with the burgeoning home computer scene felt entirely anachronistic."
[Off The Telly]

"On 17 August 1982, the first commercial CD was released. Digital recording and editing have changed the face of music by making recordings easy to originate and share. But has this affected musical quality, and what are the financial and artistic consequences?  Where does BBC Radio stand within this technological revolution? Has the BBC’s ability to adapt effectively signed its own death warrant? And does public service broadcasting have a future in the internet age?"
[Gresham College]

"The thinking and experimentation behind the making of the opening titles for the show 'Riverside' are revealed in this quick look behind the scenes."

"Music Arcade presenter Tim Whitnall at Maida Vale investigating how the second Dr.Who theme tune of 1980 was created."
[BBC Clips][BBC Programme Index]

"Sue MacGregor reunites five people who made their names in the ground-breaking BBC TV comedy THE YOUNG ONES. [...] When The Young Ones was first aired in November 1982, ratings were pitiful. But before long, the show, with its wild slapstick and surreal twists, soon won a dedicated following."
[BBC Sounds]

"Originally published in the Guardian on 11 October 1982: The Tudor warship yesterday experienced the second big anticlimax of her 473-year life when the Mary Rose Trust had to postpone the raising of her remains from 50 feet of water."
[The Guardian]

"Look North presenters look back at their time on the programme as the BBC celebrates its 60th anniversary. Presenters on Radio Durham and Radio Carlisle captured in action."
[BBC Rewind]

"A report on Gloria Hunniford's first morning as presenter of her own record and chat show on BBC Radio 2, Taste of Honey."
[BBC Rewind]

"In this edition of The Reunion, Sue MacGregor reunites Julie Walters, Alan Bleasdale, Tom Georgeson, Michael Angelis and producer Michael Wearing to talk about their roles in the landmark 1980s drama series Boys from the Blackstuff."
[BBC Sounds]

"We were about to start seven hours of transmission and nobody could find Cardiff,’ says director Pieter Morpurgo, speaking about the 1981 edition of the programme, which opened with a contribution from each of the major BBC regional stations."


"Nick Robinson looks at the Falklands War in 1982, when broadcasters and politicians clashed over coverage of the conflict and delays in getting pictures from the Task Force."
[BBC Sounds]

"Now most newspaper groups are a part of larger media conglomerates with their own television stations and production arms, the BBC gets a lot of bad press."

"This Report covers the period April 1981 -March 1982, so the arguments over coverage of the Falklands campaign and the lively discussions about the future of'Cable took place outside this year. There were, nevertheless, three events which were of great importance to the future of the
[World Radio History]