Front Room mug

Copyright resides with the original holders, no reproduction without permission

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Thanks to Jonathan Relf for sharing this mug from the series Front Room, which was presented by Jason Bradbury, who has gone on to find fame with the Gadget Show. It went out in 1999 on BBC Knowledge, which was one of the BBC’s first digital channels.

The series was recorded in Studio 1 (built as a radio studio). Studio C’s gallery was cross-wired to cover Studio 1.

Jonathan recalls that the show included, “the cutting edge of “new media” content. I can remember a segment involving the “Take Hart” gallery music too, but was internet related.” The show involved viewers sharing ideas via webcams, video diaries, online chat and email.

Jonathan thinks he was training as a lighting operator on the show, probably under the tutorship of  Dave Bushell.

I seem to remember that Tony Steyger was the Exec and Caroline Jones the Series Producer, with Bob Davies as Studio Director.

 

 

 

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Andy Payne

Photo from James French, no reproduction without permission

Photo from James French, no reproduction without permission

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Andy Payne, shown on the left here, sadly died on Friday 22nd July 2016, of acute myeloid leukemia. Andy was a brilliant cameraman, of both studio and single cameras. He could shoot drama, factual or live multi-camera. I remember that camera operator, and director, Karen Lamb, said to me once that Andy was the best BBC Birmingham cameraman, which in such illustrious company is quite an accolade. He was a quiet and thoughtful man, and a great person to have in your crew. Andy was just 55.

Andy worked on a whole variety of programmes including, Pebble Mill at One, Pebble Mill, Going for a Song, and latterly, Doctors.

On the right of photo is Dave Farline, who died in 2008, also of cancer.

Thanks to James French for the photograph.

The following comments were left on the Pebble Mill Facebook page:

Bob Davies: ‘This is such sad news. Almost unbelievable. Two lovely men who were brilliant camera men, both loved their work and always gave of their best. I was lucky enough to have them on my crew on many occasions. Andy was often my camera supervisor – never got flustered, always smiling, good natured, full of positive advice and enthusiasm. He and Dave were a terrific team in the studio, on location and as hand held operators.’

Karen Lamb: ‘Andy had the warmest smile and talent in abundance which he got working with the infamous and slightly scary but sexy crew 3 – camera supervisor Tony Wiggly, John Couzens (just Wow!) Jim Gray & Barry Foster. I don’t think it would have been as kind a fit for me welcoming the first girl cameraman to their crew (which I believe was considered) as Crew 5 the wonderful Keith Salmon, Dave Ballantyne, Norman Steemson & Lovely James French, thank you all for the amazing memories, Pebble Mill was the best.’

Ruth Barretto: ‘I first met Andy in the 80’s when I started working at Pebble Mill. I knew him and his dad. So lovely, true professional. Everyone always sang his praises.’

Graham Sherrington: ‘Andy guided me through my first ever outing as a drama Director on Doctors years ago. He was kind, generous and an incredibly talented DP.’

Jane Green: ‘I was very upset to hear about Andy. I was lucky enough to work with him on PM@1, drama, news. OBs – everything really. A really lovely man, with a super Brummie humour.’

Bryan Sharpe: ‘I remember Andy working on Midlands Today.. great guy and always helpful…. as I started out on my directing career.. sad loss!’

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Front Room

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

This title grab is taken from the interactive educational series Front Room. The show was described in the Radio Times as the: interactive show presented by Jason Bradbury in which viewers exchange views and ideas using webcams, video diaries, online chat and e-mail http://genome.ch.bbc.co.uk/search/0/20?q=Front+Room#search.

It was aired from June 1999, and finished in 2000, going out on the newly formed BBC Knowledge channel. Which was one of the BBC’s first digital channels, whose remit was to produce educational programming in a fun and interactive fashion. See this link of Wikipedia for more information about the channel: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BBC_Knowledge.

BBC Knowledge was short-lived as a channel, closing in March 2002, to make way for BBC Four.

Caroline Jones was a producer on the show, and Tony Steyger certainly worked on it, possibly as editor, and Bob Davies was the show’s studio director. The show was quite innovative, and Tony was ideal to work on it, with his background of working for Maverick TV, on self-shot shows like Trade Secrets.

Thanks to Ian Collins for making the grab available.

Blizzard’s Toys – Lynda Kettle’s photos

Photos by Lynda Kettle, no reproduction without permission.  Lynda Kettle was a Production Designer at BBC Pebble Mill, working on factual, entertainment and drama shows in studio and on location.  The photos were taken as records of the Sets.

In the 1980s presenter and craftsman Richard Blizzard made several studio based series showing viewers how to make wooden toys.  Some of the series were produced by BBC in London and hosted at Pebble Mill, whilst the 1987 series Blizzard’s Wooden Toys was produced at Pebble Mill by Mary Clyne and directed by Philip Thickett, and the 1989 series Wood Works with Blizzard was exec produced by Stephanie Silk and directed by Bob Davies.

I’m not sure which series is shown in Lynda’s photos – possibly the 1987 Blizzard’s Wooden Toys.

Production Designer, Lynda Kettle also worked as a theatre designer and an artist, and now runs courses from her art studio http://www.lynda-kettle.com.  She is a member of the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists, Birmingham Water Colour Society. Midland Pastel Society and Birmingham Art Circle . She exhibits her paintings several times a year at selected galleries.

Blizzard's Toys