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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

Television Comes To Alexandra Palace: 1938

Several shots around the new experimental television studio at Ally Pally. A girl is filmed to demonstrate cameras and TV at work. Various shots showing Andy Capp clones erecting the television aerial.

Various shots inside studios, staff restaurant, director in his office, technicians at work, cameramen, make up, control room, etc.

Views: 340

Tags (All lower case. Use " " for multiple word tags): alexandra palace

Comment by Stephen Middleton on November 24, 2014 at 17:32

Thought I'd seen this before, but this is much longer clip..... Thanks

Comment by Colin Marr on November 24, 2014 at 21:02

What an entrancing record of an exciting time! It is interesting that it gives as much attention, if not more so, to the drama of the technology of broadcasting as it does to the artistes and the front-of-camera glamour. 

It is timely to show this now, just as the planning application for the opening up of the studios and the eastern end of Ally Pally is up for public review and comment.

Comment by Straw Cat on November 25, 2014 at 1:23

This is part of a longer film, which begins with the government announcement that television is to be given a trial at AP, shows the competing systems - Baird and Marconi - and ends with Adele Dixon singing her catchy song "Magic Rays of Light" live.

Comment by Alex Houghton on November 28, 2014 at 2:09
My father used to tell me how he would cycle up to AP to watch them building the tower.
Comment by sally mustoe on November 28, 2014 at 11:49

I was a reporter on a programme called Town and Around, then much later,in the early 90s when I came to live in Crouch End, I was asked to join a committee whose aim was to reopen 2 of the studios for 'communications' students. I don't agree with Colin that more emphasis was put on front-of-camera in this video and that was the problem in the committee- too many people debating things like the size of nuts and bolts!

Comment by Straw Cat on November 28, 2014 at 12:16

Yes, the film is good at covering both front-of and back-of camera stuff and their interaction - for example it shows the teenage announcer, even with her flawless skin, having to have loads of special contrasty makeup applied.

Comment by Richard Woods on November 28, 2014 at 16:32

Wonderful... I lived and played at Ally Pally until 1964. My grandfather was inspired by its presence to build three televsion himself (he was an engineer). Using Practical Wireless plans he built the first in about 1949. By 1953 we had a 12 inch screen! But mum decided DER would do a better job at 14 for the Coronation.

And in about 1952 I and a chum climbed halfway up the mast before being called down by an irate copper who gave us a right wigging!

Comment by Clive Carter on December 10, 2014 at 7:14

I think one of the themes here is that, although the makers of this film did not and could not know what television would become, it's plain to me that they sensed it. I think the pride and expectation comes through especially in the choice of music.

The occasional, slight traces of nervousness of the beautiful Elizabeth Cowell were understandable and for the four labourers pulling at a cable to be filmed by the BBC, must have understood that what they were doing was somehow significant.

Two current Planning Applications bear on this (HGY/2014/3122 and HGY/2014/3291).

These Applications from Haringey Council (the current Trustee) to Haringey Council (as Planning Authority) call for the partial demolition of the 1936 Studios, that are of global signficance.

This carelessness would preclude any chance of UN World Heritage site status, a long term goal that the Trustee formally adopted on 16 February 2012.

Clive Carter
Councillor
One of the 57 Trustees

Comment by Richard Woods on December 10, 2014 at 20:00

And not a hard in sight!

Comment by John D on December 10, 2014 at 20:42

I beg your pardon ? 

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