End of an era: BBC Television Centre (1960-2013)
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Thread: End of an era: BBC Television Centre (1960-2013)

  1. #1

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    End of an era: BBC Television Centre (1960-2013)

    Last summer, the BBC announced that they were going to put their Television Centre studios on the selling block.

    For 53 years, Television Centre was Britain's answer to CBS Television City here in the States, where iconic shows like Doctor Who, Monty Python, Are You Being Served?, Strictly Come Dancing (or as it's called elsewhere, Dancing With The Stars), Top Of the Pops, and countless others were produced. Since 1969, it also served as the home to BBC News and last week, they did their final newscasts there as their operations have already moved to Broadcasting House. And this year's Comic Relief -- no relation to the annual HBO specials in the '80s and '90s -- was the last ever live broadcast from Television Centre.

    The building will be redeveloped to include office space, luxury apartments, hotels, and a movie theater though the studios will be refurbished and leased to other production companies including the BBC. By the way, they did a great documentary on Television Centre's legacy ("Tales of Television Centre") which is on YouTube.

    Television Centre opened in 1960 and had more stages than Television City (opened in 1952); but with its eight stages, more shows -- have been done at TV City than in TV Centre...except that it doesn't have a bar or cafeteria like other studios and there's no problem finding your way around.

    But alas...all good things must come to an end.

  2. #2

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    Re: End of an era: BBC Television Centre (1960-2013)

    Another one off my Bucket List.
    "The postings on this site are my own and don't necessarily represent the Company positions, strategies or opinions."

  3. #3

    Re: End of an era: BBC Television Centre (1960-2013)

    While CBS's Television City is well-known, I would think that the only television broadcast center in the world more famous than BBC Television Centre was NBC's Color City in Burbank.

    NBC sold-off the facility a couple of years back (it's now called The Burbank Studios; homepage is at http://theburbankstudios.com) but the producers of "Days Of Our Lives" and "The Tonight Show" (until Jay Leno retires next year) still rent soundstages there.

  4. #4

    Re: End of an era: BBC Television Centre (1960-2013)

    Britain isn't what it once was....or what I thought it was.

    I remember my first trip in the mid-80's. I got off the plane at Heathrow expecting to see something out of "Peter Pan" and instead found myself in the middle of Bombay. It wasn't all a disappointment though as I loved my first exposure to Indian food.
    Illegitimi non carborundum

  5. #5

    Re: End of an era: BBC Television Centre (1960-2013)

    Quote Originally Posted by landtuna

    I remember my first trip in the mid-80's. I got off the plane at Heathrow expecting to see something out of "Peter Pan" and instead found myself in the middle of Bombay.
    Tee-hee. Yes lots of Indian immigrants in that part of London, and they've now been joined by Poles, Czechs and Slovaks as the EU expands Eastwards. Indeed I believe London as a whole is now minority -majority.

    This isn't the place to debate immigration, and there have certainly been benefits to the UK, and it has livened the place up somewhat, but it's ironic that you can go just a few hundred yards from iconic British tourist attractions like the Tower of London and Wembley Stadium and scarcely hear an English speaking voice.



    But anyway there is no doubt the TV centre building was knackered, and for all the controversy about the cost of the move to Salford, the new site is impressive. Kenglish, put that on your bucket list instead- the city of Manchester is well worth a look, and much cheaper and less touristy than London.

  6. #6

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    Re: End of an era: BBC Television Centre (1960-2013)

    And while we're at Manchester...

    The Granada Studios, home of Coronation Street -- one of TV's longest-running soap operas -- and other shows, was sold recently to Ikea. During the last British election in 2011, the first ever televised debate between the party leaders was at those studios (reminds us of when the old WBBM-TV studios in Chicago hosted the very first Presidential debate between Nixon and Kennedy).

    So in Britain, if BBC Television Centre was their CBS Television City, then the Granada Studios must've been their Burbank Studios...or, before it was torn down for a new high school, KTTV's Metromedia Square.

  7. #7

    Re: End of an era: BBC Television Centre (1960-2013)

    There's a new ITV studios at Salford too. Just across the canal bridge from the BBC..


  8. #8
    http://www.bbcstudioworks.com/?p=2739

    According to this link by BBC Studioworks "Television Centre" will reopen in September 2017 with refurbished studios.

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