Looking to watch your favourite TV shows on-demand such as Friends or Mrs Browns Boys? That wasn’t an option back in the 40’s. We take a fun look at what people people in the nineteen forties would watch on the telly.
There was no Sky, Lovefilm or Youtube, TV was only beginning to broadcast again since the war and their favourite TV shows were only aired once a fortnight.
Television in the 1940s seen the beginning of shows being aired on the TV. However from in the 1940s until 1945 there was no television broadcast because of the War.
It was not until 1946 that the BBC broadcast for the first time since World War 2. In 1947, the BBC Television Service broadcasts are temporarily suspended due to a national fuel crisis. By 1948, the BBC was back to broadcasting and began with its coverage of the Olympic Games in London.. So what other popular shows were aired in this decade?
Come Dancing was the British ballroom dancing competition show which was first aired in 1949, it ran on and of until 1998, which made this one of television’s longest-running shows. The show was created by the founder of Miss World, Eric Morley, and was broadcast from regional ballroom studios, with professional dancers Syd Perkin and Edna Duffield on hand to offer their professional advice. The show ended in 1998 but in 2004 with the name Strictly Come Dancing which follows the same format as Come Dancing.
Pinwright’s Progress aired on the BBC and had ten episodes which aired every fortnight in alternation with another program – Kaleidoscope. The story line was based on the world’s smallest multiple store owner J.Pinwright and life is far from easy, as his attractive daughter, fierce rival, Ralph the octogenarian messenger boy and members of staff(who are trying to be helpful) hinder him day-by-day. This program was seen as one of the comedy shows from the 40’s.
What would the children watch in the nineteen forties? There was no Ben 10 or Peppa Pig back in the 1940’s, but there was Muffin the Mule, Muffin, a puppet character, would dance on top of a piano as Mills played it. Other characters in this show were Crumpet the Clown, Mr. Peregrine Esquire the penguin, Louise the Lamb and many more.
Picture Page was first broadcast on the BBC and was the world’s first regular half-hour televised sitcom, and originally began in 1936 to 1939 but went on hiatus during the war. The sitcom returned in 1946 until 1952. It was the first British television series to become a long-term and regular popular series.
Christmas TV was not like it is today, as today we have a full selection of TV listings to choose from such as Sherlock, Dr Who or Downton Abbey and would only be on at certain points of the day. To find out the TV listings, you could buy the Radio Times. Here is a copy of the TV listings from 1948:
Christmas Eve Friday 24th December 1948:
BBC: 11.00am Demonstration film
3.00pm Film : Tumbledown Ranch in Arizona (1941)
7.15pm Christmas Carols
8.00pm Mrs Feather’s Christmas Party
9.10pm He That Shall Come, a nativity play by Dorothy L Sayers
10.10pm News (sound only)
Christmas Day Saturday 25th December 1948: BBC:
3.15pm Dr Barnardo’s Homes, Woodford Garden City, an entertainment
8.30pm Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, by Lewis Carroll
10.30pm News (sound only)
Christmas Sunday 26th December 1948: BBC:
4.00pm For the Children
8.30pm The Light of Heart, a play by Emlyn Williams
10.00pm News (sound only)
Do you remember any of these programs and want to share your thoughts on them and be part of our ByGone Christmas series?
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