Archers – Ruth & David’s Wedding Invitation – Stephen Martin


Copyright resides with the original holder, no reproduction without permission.

This invitation was given to Stephen Martin, who was then working creating sound effects on the Radio 4 drama series, ‘The Archers’.  It dates from December 1988.

Thanks to Stephen Martin for making the invitation available.

Strange Events at Pebble Mill – blog by Peter Poole

Archers' Studio, circa 1971

photo by Philip Morgan

This event was told to me about Radio Studio 3. This was the drama studio made famous by ‘The Archers’. One morning when the studio door was unlocked it would not fully open. This was due to several chairs that had been pushed against the door from the inside. This door was the only entrance so it’s a mystery how this happened. This may be a tall story told to new BBC staff. I can’t remember who told me. Has anyone else heard this story? I found another story about this studio on this website http://www.unexplained-mysteries.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=4602 .

This other event happened to me. It was the late 1970s and I was working alone one evening in the dubbing theatre. A little later Brian Telford came in with a tape recorded earlier in a village church. This was a recording of organ music for The Archers. The tape had a high frequency noise on it. Brian wanted to filter this noise using the dubbing theatre’s graphic equaliser. As we listened a very loud crash could be heard when the music had finished. But it sounded very strange, as if it was backwards. I played the tape backwards and the sound of a large door being slammed shut was heard. Brian said he was unaware of any such sound when the recording was made. I can’t remember what happened to the tape or if any investigations followed this event. The high frequency noise was probably due to RF induction. That is the microphone cable acting as an aerial and picking up a signal from a radio transmitter. If the church was near to the Droitwich transmitter  this could happen. Maybe Brian faked the tape and it was all a practical joke. If this was the case he did a great job. But I feel this was unlikely. I’m very sceptical about the paranormal but can’t explain how this backwards door slam was recorded. Anyone have any ideas?

Peter Poole
(It is Roger Slater being the spot operator, knocking on the door, in the background of the Archers’ Studio photo)

Jock Gallagher blog

Considering the glorious sound and fury the network radio team created at Pebble Mill down the years, I’m sorry that there are so few contributions from the wireless wonders.

I was editor and then Head of Network Radio for the best part of twenty years (1970-89), and I can recall an astonishing array of talent that passed through the radio studios both in front of and behind the mic. When I started with the Beeb in 1966 (pre Pebble Mill), I worked in the Broad Street newsroom for the fiercesome Glaswegian Jack Johnston and was regularly saved from his wrath by Roy Ronnie and Sam Shaw!  Despite Jack’s attempt to fire me, I survived and thrived well enough to climb the greasy pole and had a key part in the move into Pebble Mill in 1970. In fact, when Alan Rees (Head of the Centre at the time) became ill, I got lumbered with the whole fandango of the royal opening of the building.

So…I have a shedload of memories but is there anyone out there who wants to hear them?

It would be nice to hear from some of the old school but I warn you, I won’t need too much encouragement to shout my mouth off!

Jock Gallagher (Pebble Mill from the beginning until 1989)

Asian Programme Unit – photos by Peter Poole

Lisa Sommerville

Karen Hewson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lisa Sommerville  and Karen Hewson. Photos by Peter Poole, no reproduction without permission.

Lisa and Karen were production assistants working in The Asian Unit. This department produced TV and radio programmes for the Asian community. I remember working on the radio programme which was in Urdu. The producer and presenter was Waseem. I had to rely on hand signals for playing the discs and tapes. I then did the edit under Waseem’s guidance. I always enjoyed working with Asian Unit. They were a great team and very nice people.
Peter Poole
Here are a couple of comments from the Facebook page:
Tariq Azis: I remember Lisa and Karen well..they would tolerate me and my sister when we were loitering around the office, I was probably around 10 at the time…they’re exactly as I remember them in these photos!
Jayne Savage: Karen now runs the very successful Westbury Park Guest House in Bristol.

Radio Studio 2 before auction – photos Philip Morgan

Photos by Philip Morgan, no reproduction without permission.  Philip took these photos in November 2004, when Pebble Mill was emptied before the auction to sell off the majority of  the building’s contents.  You can see the auction lot numbers on some items in the photos.

The photos feature Radio Studio 2, as well as 1/4 inch tape machines, recording rooms etc.

Studio 2 was mainly used for recording music sessions for Radio 2 – ‘BBC Big Band’, sessions for Paul Jones’ blues programme, for ‘Country Club’ which became ‘Bob Harris Country’ and many others. It was also used to record “as live” programmes with an invited audience e.g. a Cajun series.  Pam Relton remembers ‘Voice of the People’ being recorded in there,with Jenny de Yong producing.

Thanks to Philip Morgan for making the photos available, and to Sue Welch for providing information about Studio 2.