Thames Television

Thames Television Limited is the company which, under agreement with the Independent Television Authority, provides the television programmes in London on weekdays from Monday to 7 p.m. Friday for the six-year contract period from the end of July 1968.

ITA TransmitterChannelVision Frequency MHzSound Frequency MHzOpening DatePopulation 000'sITA Homes 000's
Croydon9194.75675191.26622nd Sept. 195513,4904,190
Thames Television’s Teddington Studios

Directors: Sir Philip Warter (Chairman); Robert Clark, M.A., LL.B. (Deputy Chairman); Howard Thomas, C.B.E. (Managing Director); George A. Cooper (Director of Sales); J. T. Davey, F.C.A.; D. R. W. Dicks; H. S. L. Dundas, D.S.O., D.F.C.; Bernard R. Greenhead (Director of Studios and Engineering); A. W. Groocock, O.B.E., F.C.I.S.; Brian Tesler, M A. (Director of Programmes).

Executives: B. E. Marr, C.A. (Company Secretary); J. Andrews (Controller Programme Department); D. Conway (Regional Advertisement Manager); H. Gibson (Manager, Administration Services); D. Graham (Labour Relations Adviser); Jeremy Isaacs (Controller of Features and Children’s Programmes); Philip Jones (Controller of Light Entertainment); Alan Kaupe (Publicity Manager); M. Lawson, F.C.A. (Chief Accountant); Guthrie Moir, M.A. (Controller of Education and Religious Programmes); T. Pace (Controller London Studios); E. E. Parry (Controller Teddington Studios); Lewis Rudd (Executive Producer Children’s Programmes); J. S. Sansom, A.M.I.E.R.E. (Chief Engineer); J. Shaw (Sales Controller); Lloyd Shirley (Controller of Drama); George Spackman (Chief Press Officer); Muir Sutherland (Programme Co-ordinator); D. Thornes (Research Manager); Grahame Turner (Controller of Outside Broadcasts); Edwin Whiteley (Head of Schools Broadcasts).

Staff: Total members of staff 1,600.

Television House, Kingsway, London WC2
01-405 7888
Teddington Studios, Teddington Lock, Teddington, Middlesex
01-977 3252
Sales Offices: Norfolk House, Smallbrook Ringway, Birmingham 5
021-643 9151
Peter House, Oxford Street, Manchester M1 5AG
061-236 9867

Visits to Studios: A limited number of tickets are available for audiences at certain shows. Applications, enclosing stamped addressed envelopes, should he made to the Ticket Office at Thames Television, Television House, Kingsway, London WC2. The minimum age is sixteen, except for some programmes specially for children.

Enquiries: Enquiries about artists and programmes should be addressed to Viewers’ Correspondence, Thames Television, Television House, Kingsway, London WC2.

Submission of Scripts: Present requirements are for 60 and 90 minute plays and series. But programmes change, and authors should contact story editors in the appropriate department to learn future trends before submitting outlines or scripts.

Studios: CENTRAL LONDON: At Television House, Thames’ Central London headquarters, there are presentation and audience studios including the Today studio from which London’s daily live programme is transmitted. Thames’ film department is also at Television House together with transmission control, VTR and telecine facilities. A new headquarters and colour television studio complex is being built a few hundred yards from the GPO Tower at Euston, and is expected to begin operations in 1969.

TEDDINGTON: The main studio production centre is on the Thames riverside at Teddington in Middlesex, ten miles from Television House. There are three studios, of which the largest is 7,500 square feet, together with full facilities, including scene building and rehearsal rooms. Technically they are among the world’s most advanced studios, and were the first to incorporate many of the features now being introduced into new ITV studios. They can change from 405 to 625-line operation at the flick of a switch.

Mobile Division: The Mobile Division based at Hanworth, near Teddington, consists of three £100,000 [£1.7 million today allowing for inflation] mobile control rooms plus smaller camera and recording units, micro-wave links and auxiliary vehicles. One small roving unit and one of the main control rooms are equipped for colour, and the other two main units are also being converted.

Colour Television: Important colour development for Independent Television was undertaken at Teddington studios, including extensive research into the three major television systems, design and testing of new colour equipment and investigation of colour conversion problems. The ITA’s official colour demonstrations in 1966, which helped pave the way to a national colour television service, came from Teddington. Thames is already producing colour programmes which are currently seen in black and white by British viewers, and its staff are widely experienced in all facets of colour production.

Programmes: DRAMA: Frontier; 90-minute plays; Premiere; The Sex Game; Mystery & Imagination; Alarm; Armchair Theatre; Callan; Public Eye.
CHILDREN: The Tyrant King; The Queen Street Gang; Magpie; The Sooty Show; Pinky & Perky; Sexton Blake; Hullabaloo; The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe; Once Upon A Time; Just Jimmy.
LIGHT ENTERTAINMENT: Father, Dear Father; Best of Enemies; Horne A’Plenty; Opportunity Knocks; Max; The Goon Show; The Frankie Howerd Show; Bachelors Night Out; Cooper King Size; Never Mind the Quality, Feel The Width.
FEATURES: This Week; Report; Today with Eamonn Andrews; The Life and Times of Lord Mountbatten; Applause! Applause!
ADULT EDUCATION: The Tools of Cookery; World of Crime; The ABC of Do It Yourself; First Steps in Physics; Rich World, Poor World; Best Sellers.
RELIGION: Carry On Curate; and other ‘Last Programmes’.

About the author

Eric Croston was editor of the ITA and IBA yearbooks from 1963 until 1985

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