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    Coronation Street

    Coronation Street

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    ITV
    Welcome to the Coronation Street guide at TV.com. Coronation Street is credited as being one of the longest running soaps in the world and the longest running television soap in Britain (with the longest running overall being The Archers on BBC radio). The show has been on British TV screens since 1960 and has aired over 6,000 episodes. Coronation Street was created by Tony Warren, who drew on his own experiences living in Salford when developing the show for Granada Television in Manchester. The show's working title was Florizel Street. In a memo from Tony Warren to Granada, he explains the basis of the show: "A fascinating freemasonary, a volume of unwritten rules. These are the driving forces behind life in a working class street in the north of England. The purpose of Florizel Street is to examine a community of this nature, and to entertain." The first episode of Coronation Street, written by Tony Warren and containing the first airing of the iconic theme music (composed by Eric Spear), was transmitted live at 7.00pm on Friday 9th December 1960 and was an instant success due to its eliment of "realism". The series began as a twice weekly serial (airing originally on Wednesdays and Fridays) and was initially only commissioned for twelve episodes but due to the series' success with the viewers it became a perminant fixture, soon changing its transmission days to Monday and Wednesdays. Almost 30 years later the number of episodes increased to three per week in 1989 (additional episode on Fridays) and then to four in 1996 (additional episode on Sundays). Recently that has increased again with a second episode being added on a Monday night at 8.30, leaving a half hour gap between the end of the first episode of the evening and the start of the second. Coronation Street, Corrie or The Street (however you know it) has been at the top of the ratings for most of it's long run and despite tough competition from new soaps and even new TV channels it remains the highest rated programme on British television. William Roache is now the only original cast member remaining - he's played Ken Barlow since episode one. The Set: In early 1960, after Granada Television commissioned twelve episodes of Coronation Street, the set designer Denis Parkin was taken on a tour of Salford by series creator Tony Warren for inspiration on the set. The street's set was based on Archie Street in the Ordsall district, a film shot of which was used in the opening credits of the programme from 1960 to 1964. Archie Street itself was knocked down in 1971. The original television set was built indoors, the cobbles and paving slabs were painted to the floor and the houses were made out of wood. The set was so big and the studio so small that it had to be erected in two parts which explains why shots of the entire street were not seen until 1968 when Granada decided that the interior set was too limiting and so re-erected the set outside in a yard rented from British Railways on Grape Street on Manchester, behind the Granada studios. The cast hated it! They complained that it was draughty and cold; nevertheless it was soon re-built in bricks and mortar and survived until the end of the 1970s when the decision was made to incorporate the set into the Granada Studios Tour. By 1982 a brand new set had been erected on a new site just a few hundred yards away. When the set was complete it was opened by the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh. The new set was first seen on-screen in episode 2210, broadcast on Monday 7 June 1982. From 1982 up until 1999, it was possible for fans of the show to visit the exterior set as part of the Granada Studios Tour. With the closure of the tour, Granada were able to expanded the exterior set to incorporate further buildings on Rosamund Street (the Health Centre) and later on Victoria Street (Roy's Rolls & Elliot and Son). Coronation Street currently airs on the following days in the UK: Monday @ 7.30pm & 8.30pm, Wednesday @ 7.30pm, Friday @ 7.30pm, Sunday @ 7.30pm. Note: This episode guide mirrors the episode numbers that are used by Granada Television. These, in turn, are based on the episode production numbers. On the odd occasion over the years these have proven to be slightly haphazard. To explain; the first episode of the programme was production code P228/1, the second P228/2, etc. In 1970, the production team reached episode 999 with the episode that was broadcast on Wednesday 19th August that year. The next episode, the 1000th, was not given the production code of P228/1000 but instead was given the new production code of P694 and the number 1! (To confuse matters more, Granada also publicised episode 999 as the 1000th episode!). The actual 1000th episode was therefore known as episode P694/1. As the seventies went on, two episodes (P694/26 and P694/27) were edited down into one half-hour episode, supposedly because Doris Speed - playing Annie Walker - was ill, and four episode numbers were not used at all - P694/503, P694/504, P694/505 and P694/549. You will therefore not find episodes 1503, 1504, 1505 or 1549 in this guide - because they were never made! When the 4000th episode was broadcast in April 1996, Granada's production codes skipped from P694/2999 to P694/4000, thereby mirroring better the actual episode number being shown and publicised. The fact remains though that other episode numbers have been skipped or counted as double episodes and therefore the publicity over episodes such as number 6000 in 2005 are a few episodes out. This is no big secret and, on occasion, comments have appeared in the UK press about this anomoly.moreless
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    Emmerdale

    Emmerdale

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    ITV
    Emmerdale first screened on ITV on the 16th of October 1972, which makes it one of the longest running soaps in British Television History.
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    The Tomorrow People

    The Tomorrow People

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    ITV (ended 1979)
    The Tomorrow People are the next stage of human evolution. They're teenagers blessed with the powers of teleportation, telekenesis, and telepathy. Together they protect Earth from alien threats, and work towards bringing mankind into its future, where communication with other worlds is the norm. But their gifts come with one limitation: They cannot kill, even to save themselves. This show aired on Thames Television in the 1970s, and repeated in the United States on Nickelodeon in the 1980s. The program is currently available on VHS and DVD in the UK. Beginning May 2005 the program will be released on DVD for the USA and Canada (through A&E Home Video)moreless
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    Mind Your Language

    Mind Your Language

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    ITV (ended 1986)
    Barry Evans stars as Teacher Jeremy Brown who is attempting to teach English to a class of mixed nationality students. The first series had 13 episodes and was shown from December 1977 to March 1978. The second series had only 8 episodes and was shown from October 1978 to November 1978. The third series of 8 episodes was shown from October 1979 to December 1979. Seven years later in 1986 an independently produced fourth series of 13 episodes of Mind Your Language was shown.moreless
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    Tales of the Unexpected

    Tales of the Unexpected

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    ITV (ended 1988)
    Welcome to the TV.com guide to Tales of the Unexpected. This collection of twist-in-the-tail stories of suspense, horror and black comedy (in the early seasons, all by Roald Dahl) was filmed by Anglia Television, a regional production company in the East of England. Each episode stands alone and has its own cast, and for two seasons each was introduced by Dahl himself from a fireside arm-chair. He took a back seat when most of the stories coming forward were based on the work of other writers. Tales of the Unexpected was an instant hit. It ran for nearly ten years, clocking up a total of 112 episodes, and in the UK it is still being repeated. Anglia sold the series to more than eighty other countries, and all episodes are now available on DVD as well as VHS.moreless
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    Thunderbirds

    Thunderbirds

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    ITV (ended 1966)
    In 2065, former astronaut and millionaire Jeff Tracy forms an secret organization named International Rescue. Its mission is to intervene when human life is at threat and nobody else is able to help. They're based on a small tropical island in the Pacific. While it appears to all the world as a reclusive millionaire's retreat, complete with luxurious hillside house (appropriately in the International Style of architecture) and swimming pool, hidden beneath the house and inside a cliff face are various facilities for the enormous complex where their equipment is built, maintained and stored. The equipment, including the specialized Thunderbird vehicles, is designed and assembled by Brains, a brilliant engineer fiercely loyal to Jeff. Supporting the team is Lady Penelope, a famous society figure who secretly acts as their London operative, assisted by her butler, Parker. The five Thunderbird craft are piloted by each of Jeff's five sons, all named after members of America's Mercury program: - Thunderbird 1, piloted by Scott, named after Scott Carpenter. This ramjet-powered plane is their fastest aircraft, always first on the scene to assess the situation and coordinate the rescue. - Thunderbird 2, piloted by Virgil (after Virgil "Gus" Grissom." A fan favorite, Thunderbird 2 is the heavy lift air transport, responsible for carrying all manner of large and bulky machinery to rescue sites. - Thunderbird 3 is piloted by Alan (after Alan Shepard) or John (after John Glenn,) depending on who is on station in Thunderbird 5. 3 is the spaceship for International Rescue. - Thunderbird 4, piloted by Gordon (after Gordon Cooper), is a mini-submarine usually carried to sites inside Thunderbird 2. - Thunderbird 5 is manned by John and Alan on rotating monthly shifts. It's an orbital space platform where all communications around the world can be monitored and issues alerts to Jeff whenever trouble arises. International Rescue insists on complete secrecy. Their identities aren't known to anyone outside the organization and photography of their equipment is forbidden. Thunderbirds was produced by Gerry Anderson and was the culmination of his Supermarionation process, which used marionette puppets instead of live actors. Originally intended for children, the show still has a devoted fanbase of adult viewers, both in the United Kingdom where it originated and in the United States, where it was syndicated in the 1960s and 70s. The series spawned three theatrical features. Thunderbirds Are Go! and Thunderbird Six were produced soon after the series left the air, although neither met with box office success. In 2004, a live action feature of the same name was made without Anderson's involvement. It drew scathing comments from professional movie reviewers who compared it unfavorably to the original show.moreless
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    UFO

    UFO

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    ITV (ended 1973)
    Around 1970, the British and American governments receive incontrovertible evidence that aliens exist and are abducting humans. In cooperation with the United Nations, they set up a secret worldwide organization, SHADO (Supreme Headquarters Alien Defence Organisation), which operates in the 1980s. With resources and equipment under the seas, in the air, on land, in orbit and on the Moon, SHADO's purpose is to stop the alien incursions and find out why the aliens want humans.

    SHADO is based in England, with headquarters beneath Harlington-Straker Studios, a working motion picture studio constructed purely as a cover for SHADO. Its uppermost echelon was made up of a commander and colonels.

    Commander Ed Straker - SHADO's commander in chief, involved in the UFO program even before SHADO was formed. Formerly a USAF colonel, he sacrificed ten years of his life to get SHADO up and running. His cover is as chief executive of Harlington-Straker Studios.

    Colonel Alec Freeman - A friend of Straker from military service. When SHADO was first approved, Freeman became its first recruit on Straker's recommendation.

    Colonel Paul Foster - A test pilot who was nearly killed in a UFO incident, Foster impressed Straker with his resourcefulness, tenacity and unwillingness to accept anything but the truth.

    Colonel Virginia Lake - A brilliant systems designer and technician, the beautiful Colonel Lake took the place of Colonel Freeman in the second half of the season.

    The series was actually filmed in two blocks of episodes months apart because the original studio it was filmed at closed down. By the time production restarted, some of the cast was no longer available. Others had left soon after the series began either to avoid typecasting or because of dissatisfaction with very short-term contracts.moreless
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    Upstairs, Downstairs

    Upstairs, Downstairs

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    ITV (ended 1975)
    Upstairs, Downstairs follows the rich Bellamy family and their servants at their luxurious house in London. The show takes place between 1903-1930 and gives us an insight of the good old days. Emmy Awards and Nominations Winners in bold Outstanding Drama Series 1974 - PBS - Rex Firkin, Executive Producer; John Hawkesworth, Producer 1975 - PBS - Rex Firkin, Executive Producer; John Hawkesworth, Producer 1977 - PBS - John Hawkesworth, Producer; Joan Sullivan, Producer Outstanding Limited Series 1976 - PBS - Rex Firkin, Executive Producer; John Hawkesworth, Producer Outstanding Directing In A Drama Series 1975 - PBS - Bill Bain, Director 1976 - PBS - Christopher Hodson, Director Outstanding Writing In A Drama Series 1975 - PBS - John Hawkesworth, Writer 1975 - PBS - Alfred Shaughnessy, Writer 1976 - PBS - Alfred Shaughnessy, Writer Best Lead Actress In A Drama Series 1974 - PBS - Jean Marsh 1975 - PBS - Jean Marsh Outstanding Lead Actress In A Limited Series 1976 - PBS - Jean Marsh Outstanding Continuing Performance By A Supporting Actress In A Drama Series 1975 - PBS - Angela Baddeley 1976 - PBS - Angela Baddeley 1977 - PBS - Jacqueline Tong Outstanding Single Performance By A Supporting Actor In A Drama Series 1976 - PBS - Gordon Jackson moreless
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    The Fosters

    The Fosters

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    ITV (ended 1977)
    British sitcom about an African-American family; based on "Good Times".
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    Father Brown

    Father Brown

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    ITV (ended 1974)
    Welcome to the Father Brown guide at TV.com. Adapted from the short stories by G.K. Chesterton, Father Brown is a devout Catholic priest who acts as a freelance private investigator, solving muder-mysteries through a spiritual and philosophical thought process rather than scientific deduction.moreless
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    Timeslip

    Timeslip

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    ITV (ended 1971)
    Welcome to the Timeslip guide at TV.com. Timeslip was a popular children's adventure serial told in twenty-six parts. It told the complex tale of two teenagers, Liz Skinner and Simon Randall, who find they share the unique ability to project themselves into either the past or the future. Their exploits take them to a World War II naval station, an Antarctic research base in 1990, a tropical jungle in an alternate 1990 Britain and, finally, a government science project in 1965. Uniquely the series tackled some heavy issues for a "mere" children's series - some of which (like cloning, global warming and laser tracking defence systems) were years (or decades) ahead of their time. Timeslip was an ATV production for the ITV network in the UK.moreless
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    On The Buses

    On The Buses

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    ITV (ended 1973)
    Stan Butler works as a bus driver for the Luxton & District Bus Company. He lives at home with his slightly overbearing mother, his frumpy sister Olive and his lazy brother in law Arthur. Stan's route is the number 11 to the Cemetery Gates which he works with his conductor Jack. Stan and Jack have an eye for the ladies and are often found chatting up either the 'clippies' (female bus conductors) or the canteen staff. The bane of Stan's life is Inspector Cyril 'Blakey' Blake who is often checking up of them and threatening them with the sack for lateness and untidyness. His catchphrase is "I 'ate you Butler!". "On the Buses" was made by London Weekend Television and was remade in the US as "Lotsa Luck".moreless
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    Rumpole of the Bailey

    Rumpole of the Bailey

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    ITV (ended 1992)
    Welcome to the Rumpole of the Bailey guide at TV.com. Horace Rumpole (played by the late Leo McKern) is an untidy, ageing London barrister with one glass eye who defends in criminal cases. His clients rarely cut elegant figures. He is fond of red wine, poetry, and fair dealing, and is not looked on as a great success in life by his wife, Hilda ('She Who Must Be Obeyed'). Rumpole has had a few triumphs, and the Penge Bungalow murders are often on his mind... Rumpole shares Chambers at Number 3, Equity Court, with a mixed group of barrister colleagues, including Guthrie Featherstone (Peter Bowles) and Phyllida Trant (Patricia Hodge). He also takes pupils - notably Fiona Allways (played by Rosalyn Landor) and Liz Probert. The creator and writer of the series, Sir John Mortimer, received an Edgar Allan Poe Award for crime and mystery for Rumpole.moreless
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    A Family At War

    A Family At War

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    ITV (ended 1972)
    A huge success for Granada television at the start of the 1970's, "A Family at War" tells the story of the Ashton family in Liverpool from 1938 to 1945. The series was created by John Finch and is semi-autobiographical. The 52 episodes garnered huge ratings in its three series and strong sales abroad.moreless
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    Callan

    Callan

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    ITV (ended 1972)
    Welcome to the Callan guide at TV.com.

    David Callan, only good at one thing, well maybe two, killing people and collecting toy soldiers. He worked for a secret government agency called the Section under Hunter, head of the Section. The Section's speciality was 'disposing' of people through bribery, frame-ups, blackmail and very often death.

    Callan was a solitary figure whose only, and sometimes reluctant, ally was a smelly snivelling small-time crook called Lonely. He defied his superiors on more than one occasion and became a liability to them because he cared too much. The Section itself had often tried to rid themselves of Callan, permanently, but ended up relying on his expertise or being out-maneuvered by it.

    After a successful pilot, a series was commissioned and ran to four seasons, the latter two in colour. There was also a feature film, Callan (1974) and a one-off TV film, Wet Job in 1981.moreless
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    Sapphire and Steel

    Sapphire and Steel

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    ITV (ended 1982)
    All irregularities will be handled by the forces controlling each dimension. Transuranic heavy elements may not be used where there is life. Medium atomic weights are available: Gold, Lead, Copper, Jet, Diamond, Radium, Sapphire, Silver and Steel. Sapphire and Steel have been assigned.

    Welcome to the Sapphire and Steel guide at TV.com.

    Sapphire and Steel was a unique blend of science-fiction and thriller. The series concerned two time detectives (played David McCallum and Joanna Lumley) who rectified time disturbances and their bizarre effects. The fact that they often used less-than-decent means to achieve their aims meant that the viewer never entirely trusted them.

    The series was intensely claustrophobic and theatrical in its settings, with the atmosphere of menace and unease being conveyed by lighting, sound-effects and moody music. The production team took the restrictions of the show (low budget, small cast, simple special effects, no location filming) and turned them into strengths. Direction was extremely taut with much use being made of cleverly composed visuals. Sapphire and Steel was use of the televisual medium at its best although it never managed to be properly repeated or sold abroad.

    After a sporadic four-year run the show ended in 1982 due to the high production costs, frequent unavailability of the two lead stars and loss by ATV of its ITV franchise. Little was seen of the series until its home video release in 1992, when highly respectable reviews and sales of the tapes showed that the stories were still just as fresh and imaginative as they were over a decade earlier.moreless
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    Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) (1969)

    Randall and Hopkirk (Deceased) (1969)

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    ITV (ended 1970)
    U.S. title: My Partner the Ghost There's something different about this pair of private eyes....one of them is dead! Jeff Randall and Marty Hopkirk are best friends and private detectives. The partnership is broken when Marty is killed in a hit-and-run accident while crossing the street in front of his home. After the funeral, Jeff is startled when Marty's ghost appears to him and tells him it was murder, not an accident. Marty helps Jeff solve the murder, but in the process violates an ancient curse -- "Cursed be the ghost who dares to stay and face the awful light of day / Ye shall not to the grave return until a hundred years be gone" -- and has to remain on earth for the next century. Since Jeff is the only one who can see Marty, the detective partnership continues, but with the unusual benefit of one of the detectives being invisible to the rest of the world.moreless
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    The Sandbaggers

    The Sandbaggers

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    ITV (ended 1980)
    Welcome to The Sandbaggers guide at TV.com.

    The Sandbaggers was a taut British spy series comprising twenty 50-minute episodes produced by Yorkshire Television. The stories centred on the elite covert operations section of British Intelligence, nicknamed the Sandbaggers, and their boss Neil Burnside, himself a former Sandbagger, but now having to battle more with British bureaucracy than enemy agents. It was set contemporaneously with its original broadcast in the late 1970s and early 1980s when the Cold War still dominated the Western intelligence agenda. Burnside's main operative (codenamed Sandbagger One) is Willie Caine, his most experienced agent. Burnside's main opponents in the series are not his KGB adversaries but the bureaucrats and functionaries of his own government, often his own superiors. He is constantly at odds his his Deputy Chief and occasionally with "C", the head of the Secret Service. Burnside frequently solicits unauthorised support or cooperation from the CIA's London station chief, Jeff Ross, and uses whatever methods, no matter how morally untoward, to protect his team or achieve his goal.

    The series was created by writer Ian Mackintosh, a former intelligence officer.moreless
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    The Misfit

    The Misfit

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    ITV (ended 1971)
    Welcome to The Misfit guide at TV.com. British sitcom
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    Crown Court

    Crown Court

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    ITV (ended 1984)
    Crown Court was a long-running courtroom drama shown in the afternoon, where each weekly case at the fictional Fulchester Crown Court, was split into three episodes. Ep 1 : the case for the prosecution, Ep 2 : the case for the defence, Ep 3 : summing up and verdict. (The verdict was given by a jury of real people and not actors, except the foreperson) The first case 'Doctor's Neglect?' was originally only shown in the Granada TV region. The series was produced by Granada for the ITV Network.moreless
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