Monday, April 01, 2013

BBC Engineering Training in 1980's

YouTube is just full of fascinating broadcasting history, told by people who were part of it. Looks like the atmosphere at BBC Wood Norton was more like an English boarding school than a training centre for engineers.

BBC Wood Norton was the BBC's Engineering Training Centre, located on the side of Bredon Hill near Evesham. Wood Norton Hall was at the centre of the complex, which included TV and radio studios, classrooms, many technical areas, a large canteen, a number of accommodation blocks, The Phoenix BBC Club, a large swimming pool, a ham radio shack, and the bunker....

STO6 course was a Senior Technical Operators course for a mix of cameramen, sound, and VT, and at times Comms. It was a refresher and update course, and as part of it the group had to produce their own television programme of their own choosing, from the script to final display locally of the programme.

It was decided that the subject of what to do in and around Evesham would help future fellow courses to enjoy their evenings and weekends - this is the programme that was produced.

I was given the task of Real Ale Pubs, so scripted, directed, shot, edited and commentated that subject, the third of the three sequences in the programme.

Although an Ikegami 79 professional camera was used, the picture quality isn't wonderful throughout the programme, owing to the sequences being recorded on portable low band U-matic VTs. The original tape was then edited onto another low band U-matic, then played into the programme and recorded on yet again low band U-matic. The picture quality was getting a little grim then, but everyone gave a big groan when sound declared that they needed to transfer the programme yet again to add more sound. There were then a few raised voices but sound were adamant about it. And if the colour of the sequences all looks rather blue/green this is down to the U-matic system which had problems in reproducing red.:

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