Following the sad news about Sir Christopher Chataway, we republish this 2005 interview with him remembering ITN's opening night
Comment and Opinion
30 Second Guide
Thames was the third of 4 new companies to come on air in 1968 after the ITA had redrawn the ITV network. Thames was a joint company formed by the former Saturday and Sunday Midlands and North contractor, ABC, and the former London weekday contractor Rediffusion. The company was 51% owned, and completely controlled, by ABC. Thames was the first company to have a chronological split that occurred during the day - previously, split regions were Monday-Friday and Saturday-Sunday operations. Thames handed over to LWT at 7pm on Fridays (later moved to 5.15pm) and resumed broadcasting on Mondays. Thames began operations from Rediffusion's Television House and ABC's Teddington studios. Television House was vacated when Thames Television House on the Euston Road in London was opened in the early 1970s. It is often said that the then-government changed the ITV contracts system in the 1990s as part of a deliberate attempt to disenfranchise Thames. Industry rumour has always suggested that the ITC was pressured to drop Thames in 1992 and also to turn down their application to become Channel 5 in the mid-1990s. Thames lost their ITV contract to Carlton and ceased broadcasting at midnight on 31 December 1992. The company has had an afterlife as an independent producer, now part of Fremantle Media and called talkbackThames. Famous figures in Thames included Howard Thomas, Brian Tesler, Richard Dunn and Jeremy Issacs. Famous programmes included This Week, The Bill, The World at War, This is Your Life and Magpie.
- On Bad Sport, Glenn Aylett said: Chain smoking middle aged racing fans? Sounds a bit like me then. Mind you I'd rather sit in a shed with a pack of rottweilers than sit through a football... Read more and comment on this article.
- On ITV 1967, Terry Christie said: Independent Television Regional Companies from 1955-68 for The last 13 years. ABC Television(North of England-Midlands)(Weekends),Anglia Television(East Anglia),Associated-Rediffusion Television(London Weekdays),ATV(London Weekends-Midlands Weekdays), Border Television(The Borders & Isle of Man),Channel Television,(Channel Islands),Grampian... Read more and comment on this article.
- On tmc06: ABC Startup, Alan Keeling said: I would love to see a 1950s ABC TV startup featuring the original ABC "shield.... Read more and comment on this article.
- On Arthur Wilkinson, Chris Allen said: The only available work of Wilkinson's is his arrangements for the London cast recordings of "Half a Sixpence" and "Charlie Girl" (both on Sony) - well worth a listen! The... Read more and comment on this article.