Thursday, 17 April 2014

Recreating the impossible, probably..

Hello once again, its been a while hasn't it?

Now you maybe wondering where I have been since the latter part of last year and why there have been no blog updates at all, partly for two reasons. I have been occupying the spare time I have in different ways, but most importantly spending time working on the most important project that I have ever done so far.

Out on there on the internet, there is so much information about television history and presentation with so many different websites such as Transdiffusion, TV Cream and TV Ark to name but there is also a lot of facts as well. For instance on the upcoming 50th anniversary of BBC2 there is the ability to read about what happened on that aborted opening night as well as seeing it in video.

Though much with archive television, some pieces of footage exist and others do not. Meaning for an opening of a new television station or franchise, that the opening programme and some of that day's continuity may exist. But via discussions with some of my friends, we wondered what day's broadcasting we would all like to see again.

From this came a seed of an idea, to pick a particular day or year's schedule and try to re-piece it back together. Now you must be wondering what exactly this has to do with my absence from here, but I can explain now.

In the autumn of last year, with the challenge laid down by my friends. I decided to do a project of such magnitude, I think no-one has ever done it before. I set out to recreate the first day's broadcast of TVS in January 1982. You might say 'Yeah, that's easy to do!' but consider this, in initial footage that I had, there was only the opening programme 'Bring in the New', the launch documentary 'Birth of a Station' and a small fragment of continuity including that lunchtime's ITN News read by Trevor McDonald.

However on the actual day, 1st of January 1982, there were over 19 different programmes on that day. But the schedule showed on that day actually differed from Thames and LWT's for instance. Some of the programmes which were networked were shown in the slot that the rest of the country was looking at them in, but TVS showed some of them at different times and had programmes which had been seen by the rest of the network a few days earlier.

Plus, also nearly all the continuity was missing, meaning that had to be reconstructed piece by piece from scratch and footage of the programmes shown on that day, had to be found in various places. Even with some of the footage missing, I had to reconstruct that as well.

You might say, all in all that it is quite a hefty task to do all that. Lo and behold though, I have managed to do that and after nearly six months, my recreation of TVS' first day is finished. Before this I have made other videos for YouTube and also made a pop video for some of my friends. This was a different kettle of fish though, I mean by stitching everything together including adverts from 1982 as well. Making it look like as it was broadcast, the continuity gives it that added touch, to seem like you are watching a truncated version of that day's programmes.

You might ask why, but it was showing people what exactly TVS would have looked like on their opening day as not many people would have video recorders to tape the whole day off the television. People say its easier to that now in a digital age, however the recreation is about a historical document as well. This is part of the nation's television culture, when a new ITV franchise came onto the air it was big news compared to today when a channel launch hardly goes unnoticed.

So that's my part of the story, if you would like to know more please do not hesitate to find me on Twitter @boggenstrovia and there we will go from there, OK?

Keep an eye out for more articles coming soon...

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