Before they were famous 

1 January 2001

Presenting either regional or children’s programmes has long been the route into television stardom. Some have been quite content to stay there. This feature looks at those at the start of their long career, whether to local or national fame.

The continuity announcer

Elsewhere on this site we have considered the art of the continuity announcer. Here we just look at those destined to perfect their art, or to move on.

Two examples of David Hamilton presenting on ABC Television on their northern station, both from 1966.

Whereas weekdays in the north would find Jan Leeming introducing the programmes

Listen to audio clip of Michael Prince

Although the long distance reception is indifferent this is clearly a young Michael Prince on ATV in about 1967.

On the news

We start out in Wales, where John Humphries on TWW was ousted by Martyn Lewis on HTV.

In the era before giants, let alone pygmies, here is Alan Towers. The first image shows him reading the ITN national news headlines in 1966 from Manchester for Granada; the second is a few years later reading the local news. He did wear his trademark glasses then as well – just not in these pictures.

In modern times

Bob Warman in his first month with ATV, July 1973. Over twenty years later, he was sufficiently famous to appear in the title sequence of the West Midlands version of Carlton’s oddly-named “Central News at Six”

A dewy-eyed Anne Diamond on ATV Today in 1979. Later to be the face of TV-am, then the ill-fated Good Morning with Anne and Nick.

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