Telly Addicts – Hooferdoofer

One of the characteristics of ‘Telly Addicts’ was a specially made ‘remote’, which Noel Edmonds would use to cue the clips for the contestants. This device was called the ‘hooferdoofer’.

The ‘hooferdoofer’ was built by Dave Pick from engineering, ‘It was unusual in that it didn’t use infra red light like a TV remote, it used low frequency radio picked up by a wire loop that ran all round the set. This meant that Noel didn’t have to point it in any particular direction. The three buttons operated three lights in the gallery via tie-lines from the studio floor.’

Louis Robinson came up with the name of the remote:‎ ‘”Hooferdoofer” was a word I stole from my grandmother to describe the remote.The requirement was – if I remember – Jules May wanted Noel’s hooferdoofer to signal her as the director giving her freedom to cue the clips thus keeping her control of the studio. The tightness of the relationship between Noel’s intro and the start of the clip was 90% done by the excellent editing in post production.’

Studio A Sound Desk – Peter Poole

Studio A Sound Desk
I took these photos about 1980. They show the Neve sound desk fitted with 48 channels. This enabled complex sound mixing for live and recorded programmes. Many drama and light entertainment programmes were produced in Studio A. They include ‘Howard’s Way’, ‘All Creatures Great and Small’ and many other dramas. Light entertainment  programmes include ‘Telly Addicts’, ‘Call My Bluff’ and the final series of ‘Pebble Mill at One’.
In 1997 a major refurbishment of Studio A started at a cost of £2.2 million.  The studio reopened in 1998 with vision and sound facilities which compered with the very best in the country. The new sound desk was a 60 channel Calrec Q series. However a few years later the studio was closed. This followed a decision by BBC senior management.
I visited Pebble Mill shortly after it’s closure. The studio doors were padlocked but I was able to have a look in the gallery. The new installation was superb. This together with Pebble Mill’s talented crews should have kept Studio A very busy. It’s such a shame that it closed after so little use.
Peter Poole

Telly Addicts Christmas Special


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

The photo includes left to right: Back Row, Pat Mifflin, Richard Lewis, Annette Martin, Noel Edmonds, Steve Pierson, John King; Front Row, Jennifer Hassall, Rajinder Ram, Tim Manning, Sue Williams, Denny Hodge (Comedy Workshops).

‘Telly Addicts’ was a BBC 1 Game Show produced at Pebble Mill, which ran between 1985 and 1998.  Noel Edmonds was the host, who tested contestants on their knowledge of television shows.  Alongside the regular series were a number of Christmas Specials.  This photo was taken after the recording of one of these Christmas shows.

Stuart Gandy remembers the little gadget that engineering made for Noel, known as the hooferdoofer, that he used to indicate to the gallery with. Looked a bit like a TV remote with a few buttons on.  Louis Robinson remembers borrowing the word ‘hooferdoofer’ to describe the remote, from his grandmother!

Thanks to Tim Manning for making the photo available.

Telly Addicts Question Card – from Tim Manning

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

‘Telly Addicts’ was a BBC 1 Game Show based on contestants’ television knowledge.  It was hosted by Noel Edmonds.  The series was recorded in Studio A, and was transmitted between 1985 and 1998.  It was produced by John King’s department at Pebble Mill.  First producer was Juliet May, followed by John Smith, Tim Manning and Richard Lewis.

Thanks to Tim Manning for making this Question Card available.