The final edit at Pebble Mill

The final edit at BBC Pebble Mill from pebblemill on Vimeo.


This video was recorded by Colin Fearnley on November 23rd 2004, which was the last evening of editing at BBC Pebble Mill. The editors had a get together to mark the occasion. Colin recorded the editors reminiscing about the programmes which had been edited in the VT area, including dramas, like The Brothers, and factual programmes like The Clothes Show. The video finishes with Mike Bloore inviting Tony Rayner and Steve Critchlow to jointly carry out the final edit: attaching the credits on an episode of Dalziel and Pascoe, which Chris Rowlands was editing.

Tony Rayner & Steve Critchlow carry out the final edit

Tony Rayner & Steve Critchlow carry out the final edit

‘They Who Dare’













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

This titles grab is from the extreme sports series, They Who Dare, transmitted on BBC2, in the early evening in 1995-6. The producer was Tony Rayner.

The BBC Genome archive project contains the following Radio Times billing for the first episode:

‘A series of extreme sports – activities as diverse as free falling from the world’s highest waterfall to diving without air or equipment to a world record in the depths of the Red Sea. The first programme features world canoeing champion Shaun Baker jumping his kayak 45 feet into a swirling pool just three feet deep as he pits himself against the torrential Sorba Rapids in the Alps.’

Thanks to Ian Collins for sharing this titles grab.

The following comment was added on the Pebble Mill Facebook page:

Sarah Dunning: ‘I think I designed the logo? Gosh forgot all about that one!’


Pebble Mill table at Journalists’ Charity Event

Journalists Charity lunch March 27 2014













Photo by Vanessa Jackson

This photo was taken at the Journalists’ Charity Event lunch on March 28th 2014. The event was held at the Holte Suite at Aston Villa Football Club. Jim Dumigan had arranged a ‘Pebble Mill’ table. Included in the photo are, left to right: Tony Rayner, Tony Wolfe, Jim Dumighan and John Williams.

Pebble Mill staff also present at the dinner were: Midlands Today presenter, Nick Owen, director, Philip Thickett, Caroline Officer, Tommy Nagra, Jenny Wilkes and Vanessa Jackson.

The lunch included a Q&A between C4 news presenter and journalist, Jon Snow and Nick Owen.


Rally Report














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

Rally Report was a BBC 2 series dating from the mid 1980s to the late 1990s, consisting of coverage of the Lombard RAC Rally of Great Britain, which was held annually in the autumn. The show went out each evening, and was quick turnaround. It was presented by Top Gear’s, William Woollard, from Rally headquarters with previews, live stages and twice nightly reports. It was shot on location, edited and transmitted from site. It was often a challenging production logistically. Tony Mason, presented the Rally stage reports. Rally Report was unusual as a sports programme, not made by BBC Sport. In later years it was renamed Top Gear Rally Report, to emphasise the fact that it wasn’t made by Sport, and that a lot of the Top Gear team were involved.

The producers included Phil Franklin, Brian Strachan (until 1986) and Tony Rayner with the executive producers including Derek Smith, Dennis Adams and Tom Ross.

Videotape in the 70s (part 7) – Ray Lee











Photo by Paul Scholes. Included are Brian Watkiss (blue T-shirt), Leigh Sinclair (shirt and tie), and Mike Bloore (far right)

VT Staff Changes

As I recollect, Tony Rayner was the first to leave becoming a director, and Mike Bloore to join VT as a junior. Steve Critchlow then became a VT editor alongside John Lannin. There was a period of stability until John Lannin became Operations organiser, and Steve Critchlow went I think to Planning. John Burkill, and Mike Bloore then became VT editors, and subsequently with VTC expansion Ian Collins became a VT editor. With the expansion  and promotions VT was quite short staffed, which is when I had a longer spell working in VT, and training others in the operation of Quad Machines. I don’t remember details but Tim Savage, Brian Watkiss and Ivor Williams all arrived around that time. Peter Wood-Fisher was in VT later but not at any time I was working in VT. I think Steve May and Martin Dowell came later, possibly when the VPR2’s first arrived. After that I lost touch with staff movements in VT, as I spent more time in the Studio end of operations, and from 1984 in Engineering Services.

Ray Lee