Crosswits, Coffee and Biscuits: Daytime on ITV, Late 1980s Style

Who remembers when morning daytime TV on ITV meant Crosswits instead of people at their wits end? The 07 September 1987 was a seminal date in Independent Television’s history. Before then, all ITV franchisees from 9.25 am carried schools programming. Instead of The Jeremy Kyle Show or This Morning, viewers tuning into Granada or Central…

A Brief History of Teen Travel in Greater Manchester

Who remembers Greater Manchester’s previous attempts at wooing teenagers onto the bus? Over the last week, details of Andy Burnham’s Opportunity Pass have been revealed in the Manchester Evening News and on the GetMeThere website. From the 01 September, young people aged 16 to 18 years old – so long as they produce a smart…

Christmas Day On The Buses, Greater Manchester, 1986

Was 1986 the last year when Greater Manchester had an extensive bus network on Christmas Day? For many carless households, leaving the house on Christmas Day is nigh-on impossible. As a rule of thumb, it is assumed that many people spend Christmas Day at home. They are more likely to open presents, get entangled with…

A Late 1980s Ewing School Christmas

The joys of Christmas at the Ewing School, West Didsbury, as recalled by yours truly 28 years later Back in 2010, a post entitled The Ghost of Christmas Discos Past took an affectionate look at junior school discos and other Christmas activities. Most of which was inspired by my brief spell at Yew Tree Junior…

Last Tiger in Paris: Greater Manchester’s Cross-Channel Links

Who remembers getting a coach from Manchester to Paris? Cast your mind back to 1976. Many people associate the year with its long hot summer, hose pipe bans, and queueing outside stand pipes. For many readers of this blog, 2018 could have similar parallels to that year (weather and hose pipe bans alone). With the…

Whatever Happened to Pyramid Park?

Who remembers Pyramid Park, Bury’s homage to The Valley of the Kings? 1970 was a far from joyous year for some of British Rail’s passengers. The last of The Reshaping of British Railways closures were under way. In Greater Manchester and Derbyshire, on the 04 January, this affected the service from Manchester Piccadilly to Hayfield….

Irritating Radio Adverts of Times Past: The Not So Perfect Ten

Ten earworm-tastic radio adverts from the last 40 years of Independent Local Radio Four sources of inspiration are behind our latest Not So Perfect Ten. One is my memories of 1980s Independent Local Radio – Piccadilly Radio in particular. The second source is an episode of Pablo [CBeebies’/RTEJr’s exciting children’s television series] where Pablo is…

If Greater Manchester Transport Did Aeroplanes…

Could we have seen a GMT liveried Concorde flying over Concord Way? The Greater Manchester Museum of Transport in Cheetham is a wonderful tourist attraction. Besides its collection of buses, bus stop flags, and other artefacts, it has an excellent café. The museum really comes alive on special event weekends – such as the Christmas…

On Reflection: The Joy of 3-2-1

A look at the bafflingly popular Yorkshire Television quiz show which ran for ten years Before the 29 July 1978, Saturdays in front of the television meant World of Sport or Grandstand. Then a peek at the latest imported programme at teatime (something like The Man From Atlantis). Encroaching into the prime time slot, there…

Train Seats in All Parts: The Not So Perfect Ten

A selection of the best train seating positions on Network Rail metals and preserved lines If you travel by train in the peak hours, there are two inevitabilities. One is the fact you’ll need a mortgage for the rail fare or the season ticket. The other, are the chances of getting a seat. Which is…

The Three Ages of Greater Manchester’s Bus Stations

A look at the evolution of Greater Manchester’s bus stations from 1969 onwards In the last fifty years, Greater Manchester’s bus stations have changed dramatically. More recent trends favour single terminals and improved connections with other modes of transport. In smaller towns, they form part of a focal piazza, as seen at Radcliffe’s bus station.

Britain’s Greatest Television News Themes: The Not So Perfect Ten

East of the M60’s latest Not So Perfect Ten looks at Britain’s greatest television news signature tunes …And now, the headlines from the East of the M60 newsdesk: Leading blog’s countdown of the ten best news themes; Countdown includes nostalgic look at best news tunes from the 1950s onwards; Most of which are from BBC and ITN news programmes. In…