The British Broadcasting Corp. marked 100 years of broadcasting on Tuesday, a century after a group of wireless manufacturers founded the company and began filling the airwaves with its first daily radio service. The BBC was founded on Oct. 18, 1922, in London and daily broadcasting began a month later. The broadcaster is marking its centenary with a series of special programs, including a guest appearance from King Charles III on The Repair Shop, a program featuring expert craftspeople restoring antiques. (NPR)
There is no news today!
Has there always been news? Seems almost impossible to imagine a day without news, but 87 years ago, on 18 April 1930, the BBC’s news announcer had nothing to communicate. “There is no news,” was the script of the 20:45 news bulletin, before piano music was played for the rest of the 15-minute segment.
Calling all classrooms, this is the BBC
One of the BBC’s aims was to provide experiences for students of all backgrounds that perhaps only the most privileged could previously enjoy, such as hearing from a professional speaker or musician. Right up until World War Two, schools programming was live. If any lessons needed to be repeated, scripts were simply re-used in a new broadcast. Teaching notes, available to schools, accompanied some programmes – a tradition that continued for decades.
Inform, educate, entertain. Those were the three main pillars for the British Broadcasting Company (BBC) set out by its first general manager, Sir John Reith, in 1922. With a whole third of that statement dedicated to enriching minds, it was perhaps no surprise that programmes for schools were an early part of that plan.
Arthur Burrows, the first ever Director of Programmes said in early 1923: “Shortly we are commencing afternoon programmes in the provinces… in which case of course, the way is paved for a very important development in the use of wireless for instruction in the schools.”
Look at the timeline below and pick out one or two historical moments you would like to present to your class.