On January 8th 1923, British broadcasting left the studio for the first time. William Crampton had the idea, Arthur Burrows seized on it, John Reith approved it, Cecil Lewis kept interrupting it with stage directions and synopses...

Hear all about it here on episode 43, with the voices of Peter Eckersley, Harold Bishop, Arthur Burrows, A.E. Thompson and Percy Edgar. Plus Dr Kate Murphy tells us about the first radio 'aunt', Aunt Sophie/Cecil Dixon. And what John Reith did for the first time on January 6th. You won't believe it...

This episode is drawn from over a dozen books and the like, including research at the marvellous BBC Written Archives Centre in Caversham. What a place! What a team.

Cecil Lewis' book Broadcasting from Within is quoted from extensively, and I'm reading it IN ITS ENTIRETY for our matrons and patrons on Patreon.com/paulkerensa at the 'superhero' level. If you sign up, even for one month and cancel, you're helping keep this podcast afloat, so thank you.

BUT I'm making part 5 of my reading of it available to EVERYONE. This is the except that's all about this first outside broadcast, so if you'd like to hear me read it and talk about it, it's all here for you, whether you're a Patreon subscriber or not: https://www.patreon.com/posts/63268433 - Enjoy!

My play The First Broadcast is touring the land - details at https://www.paulkerensa.com/tour - or get in touch to book it in for your venue. 

Find us on social media at www.twitter.com/bbcentury or www.facebook.com/bbcentury or www.facebook.com/groups/bbcentury

And do subscribe, share, rate and review us. It all helps spread this little project, which is NOTHING to do with the BBC - it's just a one-man band.


  • Original music is by Will Farmer.
  • Many of our archive clips are old enough to be public domain. BBC content is used with kind permission, BBC copyright content reproduced courtesy of the British Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.
  • This podcast is 100% unofficial and NOTHING to do with the present-day BBC - it's entirely run, researched, presented and dogsbodied by Paul Kerensa.
  • Be on the show! Email me a written ‘Firsthand Memory’ (FM) about a time you’ve seen radio or TV in action. Or record a voice memo of your ‘Airwave Memories’ (AM), 1-2mins of your earliest memories of radio/TV. Get in touch!

Next time: The Birmingham and Holland stations. Yes, Holland...

Happy listening!

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