What a year it’s been!
From a personal perspective 2012 has been fruitful and eventful in terms of finding lost television.
It’s very difficult to know where to start following on from last years excitement, with the highlights including the Doctor Who finds, and, especially for me the discovery of the Jean Genie – which not only was shown on the BBC and at the BFI Missing Believed Wiped event – but has now become one of the best-loved Top of the Pops performances of all time; it has now been released by EMI on vinyl
Starting off this year’s round-up by thanking John Henshall seems a good way for me to begin.
John Henshall is a real gentleman, and I finally got to meet him in 2012 (after innumerable texts, phone calls, messages and emails in 2011), and as well as his 15 years working for the BBC, he also later worked as a Director of Photography on many well-loved videos for rock and pop artists, as well as being an innovator in terms of photography, with a CV in the field that is second to none.
John retained many video tapes and films over the years, and many of these are now with Kaleidoscope.
Some of the tapes contain footage otherwise lost, including clips from Southern Television’s ‘Junkin’, the BBC’s ‘Petula Clark Show’, and ‘Hogmanay’, and these have been or are due to be shown at Kaleidoscope’s events.
It’s also great to hear, as I did during the year, that Ian Levine’s tapes have also been deposited with Kaleidoscope. Ian’s work within the music industry is well-known as is his love of all things Doctor Who, so let’s hope some gems are uncovered there.
This year I was able to attend two of Kaleidoscope’s events, in June and September. Two of the highlights there at the music-themed event in June – other than two recovered Top of the Pops from 1971 and 1973 – were the Tim Disney Archive-recovered ‘A Whole Scene Going’, and an episode of ‘Lift Off With Ayshea’, precious little exists of either show, making these finds especially welcome.
The September event was billed as a tribute to ATV; footage from many great programmes was shown including Tiswas, the Golden Shot and Pipkins. At the event, I also managed to get a snippet of a lost Rolling Stones TOTP performance shown; I alerted the Head of BBC Four music to my discovery, and this was broadcast on 24/11/2012! The day before a snippet of Bus Stop from a 1966 TOTP, previously lost, and spotted on YouTube in 2011, was shown!
Aside from Kaleidoscope’s event, I am hoping to finally attend the BFI’s Missing Believed Wiped this weekend – this will also include some missing continuity from Border Television (my old area!), that I had a hand in recovering.
Something else I discovered in 2012 was the BFI’s new searchable database. Previously the old one listed films and shows that existed at one time – the new one (which also nicely links to the Regional Archives) contains contents of the BFI/NFA’s holdings. Several hundred programmes – including many Magpies and New Faces once thought lost, are now confirmed to exist! I would particularly like to thank Chris Perry for liaising with the BFI and also John Green of the Missing Episodes Forum for his sterling work.
And what of the Forum Finders List for 2012? This is the list of things found by the members of the Missing Episodes Forum, that I put together annually, in addition to Kaleidoscope’s list. This is, of course published in Wiped News.
Well, I won’t pre-empt the list’s publication next month, but I will hint at a few things on there….
There are more audio finds this year, several finds of outtake footage from shows and a great deal of YouTube finds, but also I am very proud of the discovery of two complete TWW documentary series, and a 1958 BBC series which I found in Australia.
Aside from all that, I am putting together lists of excerpts of wiped shows that exist at the BBC within other shows (such as Points of View, Talkback and Blue Peter), and also a TOTP orphan list.
The number of emails and messages and phone calls I receive about missing episodes has also quadrupled; it’s like having a second full-time job (which is why I think the BBC should employ me!!!!
Lastly, I would like to thank all the people who have helped make this year so good, all the people at Kaleidoscope, the harassed individuals at the various archives in the UK and around the world who have to put up with my enquiries, the Missing Episodes Forum members, all my contacts on email and Facebook involved in this, including the Fossil Collective (you know who you are!).
Until next time….