Recoveries and Discoveries of the Year!
It would be unfair of me to single any one discovery out as the best; cheese to one man is chalk to another, and in my opinion ALL recoveries and discoveries are good.
A recovery is something that is returned for posterity to the archive holder; a discovery is something that was thought lost, but is proven to exist. Obviously a recovery is better for everyone, but even a glimpse of something on YouTube that was thought lost is great – and it may turn into a recovery.
My own personal favourites would include the huge Library of Congress find of early TV drama from the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s. Well done to all involved in this particular find!
Kaleidoscope’s recovery of Oliver Postgate’s films also deserve a mention – timeless and a part of many people’s childhoods.
The recovery of audios of some Not Only But Also editions are also very interesting and we now can at least hear what every episode sounds like!
The BSB recoveries are also very important – it is to me equally tragic that shows are still being erased in the multi-channel era. Wiping, alas, did not stop in 1978.
The discovery of a clip from a 1966 Top of the Pops featuring The Hollies is also excellent, and although not returned to the archive, gives many of us music fans hope that we can find more footage from Britain’s best-loved music programme. The various clips that have come to light from ’70s TOTPs – mainly sourced from N1500 tapes – are all welcome.
My favourite find of 2010? I’m biased, but it’s the one I found myself in the Screen South East Archive from a 1968 Late Night Line-Up.
It’s an early BBC colour film – colour had only been in operation for less than a year – and on a personal level, it’s my favourite recovery, not only because I was involved and it made me more interested and active in finding footage, but also in that I was contacted by a relative of the presenter – the recently ennobled Lady Joan Bakewell – who told me that Joan had heard about the recovery and she asked for the contact details to be forwarded to her in the hope that she might be able to purchase a copy.
It’s little things like that make it all worthwhile!