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BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
is one of the oldest regional arms of the BBC, located in Birmingham. It was the first region outside London
London
to start broadcasting both the corporation's radio (in 1922) and television (in 1949) transmissions, the latter from the Sutton Coldfield television transmitter. For many years, BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
was based at the Pebble Mill Studios, but in 2004 moved to the brand-new Mailbox facility in the city centre. Pebble Mill has been demolished to make way for a dental hospital and school of dentistry, which opened in 2016.[1] BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
is not to be confused with BBC
BBC
Midlands, which is also based at the Mailbox. BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
is the name of the Network Productions Centre in Birmingham
Birmingham
making network programmes for television and radio. BBC
BBC
Midlands is the regional operation providing news, current affairs and other regional programmes. Some departments within BBC
BBC
Birmingham, such as factual programming, have been subject to review as part of a wider restructuring process. Much of the factual department, making programmes such as Countryfile, has been moved to either Bristol, Salford or other BBC
BBC
offices.[2]

Contents

1 Buildings 2 Notable historical BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
productions

2.1 Drama 2.2 Pebble Mill at One 2.3 Programmes for Asian Viewers 2.4 Hosted programmes 2.5 Other Programmes

3 Current BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
productions 4 Regional output 5 See also 6 References 7 External links

Buildings[edit] Before 1971, several converted buildings across the city were used for the BBC's operations in Birmingham. Network television was based at Gosta Green
Gosta Green
just north of the city centre. Regional television and some radio production were in Broad Street. Other radio studios were located at Broadcasting House
Broadcasting House
in Carpenter Road, Edgbaston, and at the Walker Hall in Ampton Road, Edgbaston. The Carpenter Road site also housed the administrative offices.[3] All these departments, together with a new local radio station, were unified on the Pebble Mill site in a phased move during 1970/71. The new complex, known as the Broadcasting Centre, was the BBC's first building designed for both television and radio studios, and housed the Corporation's largest TV studio outside London
London
at the time. When Pebble Mill closed in 2004, BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
moved to the Mailbox building in the city centre, and to the BBC
BBC
Drama Village in the Selly Oak district. Notable historical BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
productions[edit] Drama[edit] In the 1970s and 1980s, BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
was home to the English Regions Drama Department, established in 1971, and headed by the senior BBC producer David Rose. Its remit was to produce programmes set in various regions of England in order to provide balance to the output from London. Among the Department's best known productions are perhaps Boys from the Blackstuff (1982); Play for Today - The Fishing Party, contributions to Thirty Minute Theatre; and a series of plays by new writers, called Second City Firsts, produced by Peter Ansorge and Tara Prem which aired on BBC2. The unit also produced the first BBC Television
Television
drama with a predominantly black and Asian cast, Empire Road (1978–79) also on BBC2. Pebble Mill at One[edit] BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
used the main foyer of its Pebble Mill building for the early afternoon television magazine programme Pebble Mill at One, which ran from 1972 until 1986 and raised the profile of the studios to something of a national institution. The idea to use the foyer came about because of a lack of other studio space. It was one of the few daytime magazine programmes at the time, and quickly became popular. The Pebble Mill format returned in 1988 as Daytime Live, renamed Scene Today and finally Pebble Mill. There was a Pebble Mill spin-off during the 1970s, when BBC
BBC
1 rested its main Saturday chat show, Parkinson. BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
was commissioned to produce a late night replacement. The result was Saturday Night at the Mill with Kenny Ball and his Jazzmen as the regular house band, who also performed the show's signature tune. The programme was directed and produced by Roy Norton and Roy Ronnie. In 1981, an early evening version of a 1960s hit show on BBC1 called Six Five Special
Special
re-surfaced during the Mill's summer break, presented by Donny MacLeod and Marian Foster, and occupying the slot vacated by Nationwide. Programmes for Asian Viewers[edit] During the early '60s, BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
pioneered television programmes, for the Asian community. These were presented and produced by Mahendra Kaul and directed by Ashok Rampal, and broadcast on Sunday mornings on the sole BBC
BBC
Television
Television
channel at the time. The programme, Apna Hi Ghar Samajhiye ("Make Yourself At Home") aired on Sundays at 9.00am for half an hour. Hosted programmes[edit] The Birmingham
Birmingham
studios also occasionally accommodated productions usually based in London
London
when regular studio space was unavailable, for example The Brothers starring Jean Anderson, the children's programmes, Play School and Jackanory, and the current affairs programme Nationwide during the power cuts of 1972 when the Lime Grove studios in London
London
were in darkness.[4] Some nationally popular programmes were hosted by BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
and filmed at the Pebble Mill Studios
Pebble Mill Studios
which included the children's programme The Basil Brush
Basil Brush
show.[5] Other Programmes[edit] A popular BBC2 programme from Birmingham
Birmingham
for much of the 1970s-1990s was snooker programme Pot Black, generally shown most Fridays throughout the year at 9.00pm. Well-known BBC
BBC
programmes based in Birmingham
Birmingham
included the drama series Dalziel and Pascoe, Dangerfield, All Creatures Great and Small, Howards' Way, This Life, daytime soap opera Doctors, anthology series The Afternoon Play and daytime property show To Buy or Not to Buy. Quiz shows including Telly Addicts
Telly Addicts
were made by BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
and filmed at Pebble Mill Studios. Gardening programme Gardener's World, cooking show Hairy Bikers, factual series Coast the countryside and environmental series Countryfile
Countryfile
and viewer feedback show Points of View were also all based here, until moving to BBC
BBC
Bristol and BBC Northern Ireland respectively. The original series of Top Gear was also produced by BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
as was some content of the astronomy-based programme The Sky at Night, while the rest is produced in Selsey. Current BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
productions[edit] BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
output has steadily diminished over time as production has moved elsewhere with the closure of Pebble Mill and the development of other BBC
BBC
sites. Doctors is currently produced at the BBC
BBC
Drama Village in Selly Oak, and The Archers
The Archers
is produced for BBC Radio
Radio
4. Father Brown, WPC 56, and The Coroner are all BBC
BBC
Birmingham productions for afternoon broadcast. The closure of the Factual Unit in 2012 [6] meant no factual programmes outside of regional output are produced in Birmingham. The Midlands contributes the highest portion of the BBC's revenue through licence fees (£942 million) yet has the second lowest amount of BBC
BBC
spending in the region, after Northern Ireland. This equates to "91% of Midland BBC
BBC
licence fees spent elsewhere" [7] Regional output[edit] Main article: BBC
BBC
West Midlands As with all other BBC
BBC
regions, BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
is responsible for providing local radio services and the regional television news broadcasts on BBC
BBC
One during the times when all regions opt out of the network feed to provide their own local news programming, which in the BBC
BBC
Birmingham
Birmingham
area is called Midlands Today. BBC
BBC
Midlands Today is broadcast from in the Mailbox in Birmingham, and is the regional news for;

Herefordshire Northern Gloucestershire Worcestershire Warwickshire West Midlands Shropshire Staffordshire North and West Oxfordshire

See also[edit]

BBC
BBC
Asian Network Sue Beardsmore Ashley Blake Carl Chinn Sonia Deol Ed Doolan David Gregory-Kumar Kay Alexander Nick Owen Shefali Oza Satnam Rana Suzanne Virdee Adil Ray Peter Sissons Adam Yosef Michael Buerk

References[edit]

^ Birmingham
Birmingham
University ^ Conlan, Tara (5 October 2011). " BBC
BBC
mulls departure from White City". The Guardian.  ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/rd/publications/bbc_engineering_89 ^ BBC
BBC
Handbook 1973, page 74 ^ http://www.pebblemill.org/blog/basil-brush-front-page/ ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-15199715 ^ Brown, Graeme (2 March 2015). "Outrage as 91% of Midland BBC
BBC
licence fees spent elsewhere". Birmingham
Birmingham
Post. 

External links[edit]

BBC
BBC
Birmingham BBC
BBC
mulls departure from White City https://web.archive.org/web/20111107144144/http://www.bbc.co.uk/bbctrust/assets/files/pdf/review_report_research/dqf/dqf.pdf [1]

Coordinates: 52°28′34.42″N 1°54′15.32″W / 52.4762278°N 1.9042556°W / 52.4762278; -1.9042556

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