Sunday, May 03, 2009

Election Night 1979 on BBC Parliament Tomorrow!

Here's one to set Sky Plus for tomorrow...

Decision 79
Bank Holiday Monday 4 May
9.00am-12.00 midnight BBC PARLIAMENT

David Dimbleby presents the BBC's 15-hour Decision 79 election results programme from Thursday 3 May 1979, with analysis by David Butler and Robert McKenzie (aided by his trusty swingometer); interviews by Robin Day with leading political figures and commentators; and an hourly results round-up with Angela Rippon.

Joining Sue Lawley to give a lighter view of the election for Decision 79 Breakfast Special are humourist Glyn Worsnip, songwriter Richard Stilgoe, cartoonist Richard Cole and impressionist Janet Brown.

Robin Day's interviewees include Chancellor Of The Exchequer Denis Healey, Shadow Chancellor Geoffrey Howe, Home Secretary Merlyn Rees, Sunday Telegraph editor Peregrine Worsthorne; and columnists Peter Jenkins, Anthony Howard and Paul Johnson.


Neil Yates said...

Typical BBC.

Roger Thornhill said...

Tsk. Bloody repeats.

This is when you realise that when they made TV in colour, it was only going to be shades of brown and butterscotch. Sepia TV.

As for Richard Stilgoe...words fail.

Janet Brown? I wonder who SHE will be impersonating. Not. I prefer Faith Brown - both of her.

Old Holborn said...

I would rather eat my own feet, thanks

Paul Burgin said...

79 is one of the ones I haven't seen, along with 59 (do any tapes of that exist?), Feb 74,and 87. Have watched them all since and inc 97 when they happened, alt 2005 was on one hand delightful as I saw it at the Letchworth Leisure Centre where the North East Herts Count was, on the other seeing MP's you hold in regard lose their seats is never pleasant, particually if the two you have worked for are among the victims!

Markus said...

Can't do it.

I've already set Sky plus to record paint drying.

David Boothroyd said...

No videotapes exist of any BBC election night until 1970. However complete 16mm telerecordings exist of 1966, 1964 and (I think) 1959. There is a partial 16mm telerecording of 1955 lasting just under 3 hours. (Also please note that one reel of master videotape from February 1974, lasting 90 minutes, has disappeared from the archives)

As yet only 1959 has yet to see the light of day on BBC Parliament. I'm expecting it this October, on the 50th anniversary.

Demetrius said...

Seen it before, boring, boring. Like watching a football match when you know the result. As I said at the time, don't worry, the Tories will soon dump the woman, and bring back Heath. Labour will win next time round in 1983 or 4 and will nationalise the banks.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I'm into politics yes, but not enough to watch re-runs of old election nights.
Is this what constitues porn for the policial classes?

Jako said...

Does anyone know whether McKenzie ever had allegiances to a particular political party?

Gary said...

For those interested in the '59 election, there are a few minutes of it included in the 1979 broadcast - along with some footage of '64 - in a short VT played whilst they wait for the results on the night.

NPM said...

There is one priceless part where the postal workers union leader - Tom ?Jackson - the one with the handlebar moustache - says 'nothing much will change - she's going to have to talk to the unions'

Paul Easton said...

I quite enjoy watching these election night re-runs - especially those which herald a major change of parliament, such as 1979 and 1997.

It can also be interesting to spot the first appearances of some newly-elected MPs who would go on to become bigger names in years to come as well as some of the ‘names’ who lost their seats.

Among 1979’s new entrants were:

John Major
Chris Patten
William Waldegrave
David Mellor
John Gummer
Frank Dobson

Similarly some of the ‘casualties’ who lost their seats:

Shirley Williams
Jeremy Thorpe
Teddy Taylor
Winifred Ewing

Working Class Tory said...

I'll be watching!

Anonymous said...

Its in two parts. so if you are setting up your Sky plus, the second prog is "The morning after" so just setting record when you see the 1979 GE will miss half of it

Plato said...

Well I'll be glued.

I was an early teenager in the NE then and we had black bin bags heaped 20' high and pickets/braziers everywhere.

It was a very ugly time and was glad to see the back of it even when I didn't understand what was going on.

Anonymous said...

I'll be up the crack of Dawn to watch this!

(Well 9AM - it is a Bank Holiday after all!)

1979 was a classic election in which Socialism was defeated. 2010 will be similar as Labour are swept into defeat!

Labour Labour Labour - Out Out Out!

Anonymous said...

Whislt watching the Socialists get defeated The Liberals were like a slug that had been salted! They shed lotes of votes and a Quarter of their seats!

Hopefully 2010 will see the Liberal democrats smashed and put into the naughty box with Labour!

Bill Quango MP said...

Don't plan to watch an historic borefest thanks. I'll be watching a rerun of the Euro 2005 elections debates in Strasbourg.
Maybe something more fun.
Like Gordon
gurninglike a champion.

Philipa said...

Margaret Thatcher was wonderful, truly an improvement. At least she eventually brokered the EU cap which didn't Bliar sign away before Broon borrowed us into recession? Yes she was such an improvement on Ted Heath who was one of the worst PM's ever. Along with Gordon Brown. I never understood why anyone voted for Ted Heath, he was.. wierd. Harold Wilson always seemed quite comforting. Maybe it was the pipe.

Don't think I'll watch the show though.

onlooker said...

This was the one where they missed the first result, showed an ITV reporter instead of their own, and cut to Play School when Thatcher reached Downing Street. Bit of a nightmare for auntie

Richard Brennan said...

Thanks for the tipoff Iain. The Election Night and the "morning after" followup are on the iplayer until Monday 11th May