London Weekend Television

LWTLondon WeekendLondon Television ConsortiumLondonLondon Weekend Television (LWT)London Weekend Television consortiumLondon Weekend TVLondon Weekend/ITVLWT GroupWeekend Television
London Weekend Television (LWT) was the ITV network franchise holder for Greater London and the Home Counties at weekends, broadcasting from Fridays at 5.15 pm (7:00 pm from 1968 until 1982) to Monday mornings at 6:00.wikipedia
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Carlton Television

CarltonCarlton TVCarlton Productions
From 1993 to 2002, when LWT's weekday counterpart was Carlton Television, the transfer usually occurred invisibly during a commercial break, as Carlton and LWT shared studio and transmission facilities (although occasionally a Thames to LWT-style handover would appear).
The company is now managed with London Weekend Television as a single entity (ITV London), but the two companies are still separately licensed.

Thames Television

ThamesThames TVITV (Thames)
From 1968 until 1992, when LWT's weekday counterpart was Thames Television, there was an on-screen handover to LWT on Friday nights (there was no handover back to Thames on Mondays, as from 1968 to 1982 there was no programming in the very early morning, and from 1983, when a national breakfast franchise was created, LWT would hand over to TV-am at 6:00am, who would then hand over to Thames at 9:25am). The LTC had planned on buying the superior Teddington Studios of former contractor ABC, but following ABC's merger with Associated Rediffusion to form Thames Television, the LTC were forced by the ITA to purchase Rediffusion's site at Wembley (see The Fountain Studios) and legally obliged to employ all members of staff, although the workforce was slightly larger than LWT had wanted.
After an impressive application, it was awarded to what became London Weekend Television in a consortium led by David Frost and others.

ITV plc

ITVcompanyITV Digital
Like most ITV regional franchises, including Carlton's, the London weekend franchise is now operated by ITV plc.
Later that year, Granada acquired London Weekend Television through a hostile takeover worth in the region of £750 million.

Frank Muir

Frank Herbert MuirFrank Muir Award
The consortium also consisted of three ex-BBC members of staff: Michael Peacock (controller of BBC1), Frank Muir (assistant head of BBC comedy) and Doreen Stephens (head of children's output). Other notable early shows included We Have Ways of Making You Laugh (a sketch show starring Frank Muir which was due to be the first programme scheduled to be aired on LWT, but industrial action blacked it out early in the first show); the children's fantasy Catweazle; and several sitcoms, including the popular No, Honestly, On the Buses, Please Sir!, Me and My Girl and Mind Your Language and cult favourites such as End of Part One, Whoops Apocalypse and Hot Metal.
Muir became Assistant Head of Light Entertainment at the BBC in the 1960s, and was then London Weekend Television's founding Head of Entertainment.

Arnold Weinstock

Lord WeinstockWeinstockArnold
Rediffusion's Controller of Programmes, Cyril Bennett, also joined the consortium, along with Clive Irving, theatre director Peter Hall and, for financial backing, Arnold Weinstock, managing director of GEC.
He was a significant investor in London Weekend Television at its launch in 1968.

The South Bank Show

South Bank ShowSouth Bank Show AwardsSouth Bank
LWT continued to show arts programming, mainly Aquarius and its successor The South Bank Show.
It was originally produced by London Weekend Television and broadcast on ITV between 1978 and 2010.

ITV (TV network)

ITVITV NetworkIndependent Television
London Weekend Television (LWT) was the ITV network franchise holder for Greater London and the Home Counties at weekends, broadcasting from Fridays at 5.15 pm (7:00 pm from 1968 until 1982) to Monday mornings at 6:00.
From the late 1990s, ITV's long-standing commitment to strong current affairs and documentary programming began to diminish with the ending of productions such as World in Action (Granada Television), This Week (Rediffusion London/Thames Television), First Tuesday (Yorkshire Television), Network First, Survival (Anglia Television), and Weekend World (LWT) and their replacement with populist shows such as Tonight.

David Frost

Sir David FrostThe David Frost ShowDavid Frost Show
The London Television Consortium (LTC) was created and led by television presenter David Frost, who, at the time, was working for the London weekday ITV station, Rediffusion.
This became London Weekend Television, which began broadcasting in July 1968.

ABC Weekend TV

ABCABC TelevisionAssociated British Corporation
The LTC had planned on buying the superior Teddington Studios of former contractor ABC, but following ABC's merger with Associated Rediffusion to form Thames Television, the LTC were forced by the ITA to purchase Rediffusion's site at Wembley (see The Fountain Studios) and legally obliged to employ all members of staff, although the workforce was slightly larger than LWT had wanted.
It was expected that ABC would be awarded the weekend London licence, but the strength of another application (from the London Weekend Television consortium) ruled this out.

Aquarius (British TV series)

AquariusAquarius'' (UK TV series)
LWT continued to show arts programming, mainly Aquarius and its successor The South Bank Show.
Aquarius (1970–1977) was a British arts television series, produced by London Weekend Television for ITV.

Weekend World

In 1972, Weekend World was launched; a weekly current affairs programme broadcast on Sundays at noon, presented by journalist Peter Jay.
Weekend World is a British television political series, made by London Weekend Television (LWT) and broadcast from 1972 to 1988.

John Birt, Baron Birt

John BirtLord BirtBaron Birt
In January 1982, John Birt became LWT's new Programme Director when Michael Grade left to accept the post of Company President at Tandem Productions in the USA, while Barry Cox became Head of Current Affairs.
After a successful career in commercial television, initially at Granada Television and later at London Weekend Television, Birt was appointed Deputy Director-General of the BBC in 1987 for his expertise in current affairs.

History of ITV

ITV strikeITVnext franchise round
This led to threats of industrial action, and, with the dispute still unresolved, fifteen seconds into their opening night of 2 August 1968, technicians went on strike and the screens went blank. An emergency service was provided by management from the transmission centre of ATV at Foley Street, London.
Takeovers began in earnest in 1994, as Carlton Television took over Central Independent Television having held a stake in the company since 1987, Granada Television bought LWT in a hostile bid and MAI, owners of Meridian Broadcasting, took over Anglia Television.

Christopher Bland

Sir Christopher BlandFrancis Christopher Buchan BlandSir (Francis) Christopher Buchan Bland
The plan was halted in early 1988, as LWT chairman Christopher Bland, along with Greg Dyke, started to streamline operations; over four years, more than 690 people were made redundant, whole layers of management were scrapped and working practices were overhauled.
He was deputy chairman of the Independent Television Authority (1972), which was renamed the Independent Broadcasting Authority in the same year, and chairman of London Weekend Television (1984) and of the Board of Governors of the BBC (1996 to 2001), when he took up a position as chairman of British Telecommunications plc (BT).

Greg Dyke

Under the control of Greg Dyke as Director of Programmes, TVS started to move away from its original philosophy of niche arts and science programming, and began producing more entertainment programmes.
In the 1990s, he held chief executive positions at LWT Group, Pearson Television and Channel 5.

Television South

TVSTVS TelevisionTVS Entertainment
While it is debatable whether the licence would have been renewed if LWT had had to re-apply in 1973, by 1982, the company was in good health, and it easily beat off weak competition to secure a second contract – although it lost the Bluebell Hill transmitter near Maidstone to the new Television South, known as TVS, as part of a reorganisation prompted by the creation of the South and South East dual region.
During 1981, TVS's ambitions were soon recognised for their desire to have a greater say in how ITV operated and its dismay on how it was being treated by the Big Five ITV companies, Thames Television, LWT, Central Independent Television, Yorkshire Television and Granada Television.

Michael Grade

Lord GradeLord Grade of YarmouthMichael Grade, CBE
In January 1982, John Birt became LWT's new Programme Director when Michael Grade left to accept the post of Company President at Tandem Productions in the USA, while Barry Cox became Head of Current Affairs.
Grade entered the television industry in 1973 when he joined London Weekend Television (LWT) as Deputy Controller of Programmes (Entertainment).

ITV Yorkshire

Yorkshire TelevisionYorkshireYorkshire TV
ATV dropped Frost's major Saturday night slot altogether and replaced him with comedian Dave Allen, while Yorkshire and Granada relegated the show to the late evening.
On 6 December 1993, the North West franchise holder Granada Television launched a hostile takeover for LWT, worth £600 million.

GMTV

Good Morning Televisiongm.tvGMTV Breakfast
LWT would have a much better relationship with Carlton, and shared many operations including transmission facilities and studio space, and each owning 20% of GMTV, but most notably creating a joint news service, London News Network, to provide regional news programming across the whole week.
The station was backed by LWT, STV, Disney, and the Guardian Media Group.

Michael Peacock (television executive)

Michael Peacock
The consortium also consisted of three ex-BBC members of staff: Michael Peacock (controller of BBC1), Frank Muir (assistant head of BBC comedy) and Doreen Stephens (head of children's output).
This was because in 1967 he was head-hunted to be the first Managing Director of London Weekend Television, which began transmissions in 1968.

ITV London

LondonCarltonCarlton Television
Unlike the other English and Welsh franchises, ITV London did not receive regional idents featuring the London name until the 2003 refresh; only one of these idents was ever used at a single junction from launch.
ITV London is the on-air brand name used by ITV Broadcasting Limited for the two ITV broadcast franchises, Carlton Television (weekdays) and London Weekend Television (weekends) in the London ITV region.

Fountain Studios

Wembley StudiosThe Fountain StudiosWembley
The LTC had planned on buying the superior Teddington Studios of former contractor ABC, but following ABC's merger with Associated Rediffusion to form Thames Television, the LTC were forced by the ITA to purchase Rediffusion's site at Wembley (see The Fountain Studios) and legally obliged to employ all members of staff, although the workforce was slightly larger than LWT had wanted.
Originally a film studio complex, it was formerly the base for the ITV contractors Rediffusion from 1955 to 1968, and London Weekend Television from 1968 to 1972.

Lew Grade

Sir Lew GradeLord GradeLew Grade, Baron Grade
The NPC was being chaired by Lew Grade, ATV's managing director, and he is quoted as saying on this occasion: "I've succeeded in business by knowing exactly what I hate," he told them.
The following year, ATV lost its London franchise to what would become London Weekend Television (LWT); at the same time, however, ATV's Midlands franchise was expanded to run throughout the week from July 1968.

London News Network

LNN
LWT would have a much better relationship with Carlton, and shared many operations including transmission facilities and studio space, and each owning 20% of GMTV, but most notably creating a joint news service, London News Network, to provide regional news programming across the whole week.
It was created in 1992 as a joint operation between London's two ITV contractors, Carlton Television and London Weekend Television, with each company holding a 50% stake.

Please Sir!

Please SirPlease, SirPlease, Sir!
Other notable early shows included We Have Ways of Making You Laugh (a sketch show starring Frank Muir which was due to be the first programme scheduled to be aired on LWT, but industrial action blacked it out early in the first show); the children's fantasy Catweazle; and several sitcoms, including the popular No, Honestly, On the Buses, Please Sir!, Me and My Girl and Mind Your Language and cult favourites such as End of Part One, Whoops Apocalypse and Hot Metal.
Please Sir! is a London Weekend Television situation comedy for ITV, created by John Esmonde and Bob Larbey and featuring actors John Alderton, Deryck Guyler, Penny Spencer, Joan Sanderson, Noel Howlett, Erik Chitty and Richard Davies.