Recollections of BBC engineering from 1922 to 1997
The British Broadcasting Corporation
web site is:

Information Exchange - Expired Items

Return to Information Exchange and Contact


Date inserted Title

93 Expired items

12 Dec 2019 MW Tx in Central London Jeff Cohen (ex-TCPD and other parts of the BBC) has never seen it mentioned anywhere but recalls that in the 1960s there was still a low power MW transmitter in central London (possibly on 719 kHz) used for radiating cue programme to OBs. He says it always seemed odd to use MW when VHF links were available from Swains Lane.  Please click on the link if you have more information about this.
2 Jun 2019 BBC specification TV80 Brian Summers says, further to his post dated 13 Feb 2019 (below), that the MCR21 restoration is now under way.

One of the many things he is looking for is the original BBC specification TV80 which is proving hard to find.

Current Newsletters can be downloaded here:- 

There is much else to find, the wish list is here:- 

There were 10 of these OB vans made used in London and the regions. He would love to hear from anyone who worked on any of them.  Please get in touch.

25 May 2019 Painton rotary attenuators Guy Stanbury is seeking technical information on two Painton rotary attenuators acquired at a recent vintage radio dispersal. He believes they may be early broadcast (BBC) studio equipment. The type numbers are PB20-M2G, PO/2E1. Any/all help would be greatly appreciated.
29 Apr 2019 Emley Moor Mike Pearson is an independent film maker researching a social history documentary about the lifestyles of BBC and IBA TV Transmitter Engineers in the Huddersfield and Belmont area in the 50s, 60s and 70s, including when the Emley Moor mast collapsed.

He is also interested in the Eagle Tower used to restore BBC2 at Emley Moor, and any riggers' experiences with tubular masts or the galloping guy phenomenon.

Mike would also like to hear from anyone evacuated from Belmont or Winter Hill (following Emley's collapse), anyone who has pictures of the 150 tons of chains subsequently suspended in those tubular masts, and anyone from Waltham which also toppled in 1966.

If you can provide any information please get in touch.  Mike's father Peter Smith Pearson worked at Emley Moor and made a cine film of the tubular mast being painted.

8 Apr 2019 Alfred Nicholas Thomas Mervyn Hagger writes: "Can you contribute to research for a specialized biography about the life of a highly respected and somewhat feared BBC career engineer named Alfred Nicholas Thomas,? He was called "Ant" behind his back, but always "Mister Thomas" to his face. He retired in 1959 after a life-time of work at the BBC. He appears to have been born in 1900 and died on October 10, 1994 at Portsmouth. He was survived by his wife Dorothy and children.

My interest is in what A. N. Thomas did after 1959 when he retired.

Three BBC colleagues contributed to his Obituary published in Ariel, and they all noted his extraordinary interest in the variety of radio and television broadcasting endeavours that he was engaged in while at the BBC. One of the contributors noted that after he left the BBC, he was employed by Pye, and this is the area that I am researching."

21 Feb 2019 Record cutting equipment Dylan Beattie writes: "I’m looking for anyone who is willing to part with any record cutting equipment from the BBC of any era, although I am particularly interested in the modified presto cutters and (modified) Grampian heads. "
13 Feb 2019 BBC OB Van MCR21

Brian Summers writes: "The Broadcast Television Technology Trust’s first project is the restoration of MCR21 back to its original 1963 condition when it can be used to demonstrate and explain the technologies used in television production.  There is much to do, information, equipment, the memories of those who worked on it, all to be found and preserved. See  If you can help please get in touch. Our associated camera museum website is"

5 Feb 2019 Equipment Identification Richard Oakley would appreciate help identifying the equipment shown in the pictures.

The modules are as follows-

Call indicator; Counter and address; Base station A request; Base station B request; Audio mix; Audio matrix A; Audio matrix B; Audio send and receive; Demultiplex; Destination facilities.

29 Jan 2019 5XX Tx to USA in 1925 Harry Nelson writes: "I am basically looking for someone interested in the March 14, 1925 transmission of music from the Savoy Hotel in London, sent to Chelmsford 5XX, to Belfast, Maine, where the signal was caught on a Beverage Wave Antenna at the RCA Experimental Radio station. From Belfast is was sent shortwave to New York City, then out on station WJZ; signal was also transmitted by land wire, I believe to WRC in Washington, DC, where the program was broadcast to listeners as far west as Milwaukee.

This, in my book, was the radio equivalent to the TELSTAR satellite experiments in 1962 involving television. In 2002, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers established an IEEE Milestone Plaque in the Andover, Maine town square.

A group of IEEE Maine Chapter members are interested in sponsoring a Milestone Plaque for the 1925 event. You can actually hear some of the broadcast [here]. I must mention much of the information was gleaned from the local Belfast Republican Journal newspaper by HAM operator Bruce Clark. Bruce and I, in 2004 searched for artifacts at the station site, and the many miles of Beverage Wave Antenna lines. We did come up with some galvanized anchors for poles, and some wire.

I would like to find someone in England who shares my interest in this historic transmission. Maybe find someone who can share photos of the Chelmsford station and antenna. Maybe someone who could find some newspaper articles and share them with use here in the US."

2 Nov 2018 Harry Rantzen Tony Taylor writes: "I am a retired academic historian living in Australia and I am currently working on a project which takes in the social, political, economic and military histories of the four families that came together when my wife (Scilla) and I married in 1968. One of those families was the Rantzens.  Harry Rantzen was my father-in-law. I knew him very well and I was very fond of him. He was courteous a man of formidable intellect right to the end of his days (he died in 1992, aged 90).

I have reached the section in my story where Harry is Head of Design[s Department] during the post-war period and while I have found two useful comments about his managerial style (his nickname was 'Tiger'apparently), there is a period (1950-1952) when he went to New York to supervise the setting up of UN's global telecommunications network. There is some dispute about how this was arranged. Harry maintained that he was seconded by the BBC but when he returned in 1952 he was told there was no job for him. The staff who have written about this incident refer to 'secondment' but his Designs staff farewell photograph (March 1950) refers to 'resignation'. Harry believed that his boss Harold Bishop, with whom he did not get on apparently, edged him out and left him high and dry on his return from the US."

14 August 2018 ME2/4/A/101 ‘Sweep Form 2’ option' Russell W. Barnes (STE Skelton) writes: "I’m looking for a cct-diagram and any info for the a.c. test-set type ME2/4/A/101 – more specifically, the version with the ‘Sweep Form 2’ option. Our ‘heritage’ ACO books at Skelton don’t cover this kit, and I can’t see it on the comprehensive ‘enginfo’ list either. Any information we once had on the unit has now gone astray.

It looks like the Sweep Form 2 version uses four EEPROMS on a discrete PCB at the back of the instrument, but, without a circuit it would be big job of comparing and contrasting with our last known worker. The test-set works fine but the sweep waveform generator has failed, and I’m afraid it isn’t simply a case of a dirty switch. All assistance gratefully appreciated!

3 August 2018 Fatality at BP Kate Terkanian writes: "I am working on a PhD on the BBC and was wondering if anyone has any information on a fatal accident that occurred at Brookmans Park, probably on 12 March 1941? I have found a reference to it in BBC files, but the archivists can’t find any further information on the accident. The records say R.W. Angell was killed, but further research leads me to believe it was Ronald Walter Angell. He would have been 39 at the time. Probate records list his death as 12 March 1941 at the Hospital in Barnet. Any information would be helpful."
2 May 2018 Master Clock Drive Unit
Mike Davis and Bart Schipper are (separately) seeking information on master clock drive unit CA1/6A such as circuit diagrams, service handbook or operating handbook. It was probably used mainly in local radio stations.

The boards within the unit are marked with the following code numbers:
AM24/1 (amplifier PCB), OS2/41 (oscillator PCB), UN1/160 (frequency divider PCB).

28 June 2017 Switch to Colour TV Phil Loweth writes: "I am a researcher for The One Show. I am looking into the possibility of making a film to mark the 50th Anniversary of the first UK colour TV transmission, which is this Saturday [1st July 2017], and was hoping that you may be able to help me.

We are looking for people who were around/involved at the BBC when this happened, either cameramen or engineering ops, who can describe how the change felt for them. Whether they felt a huge sense of achievement, if they feared that everything might go wrong or if they were just overwhelmed by the new equipment (if the equipment was hugely different). Is this something that you would be to help me with? I look forward to hearing from you."

28 May 2017 Our World James Hayes, a freelance journalist, is researching an article about aspects of the enabling technology involved in the pioneering ‘Our World’ TV programme of 25th June 1967. He’d be interested to hear from people who worked on the technical side (TV and satellite) of that broadcast, or who know about it. If you think you might be able to help, please email before Friday 2nd June 2017.
11 Mar 2017 OBA8 connector Yorkshire Air Museum is trying to find a plug for the equipment shown below.  Can you suggest where such an item could be purchased? The pictures below show the connector and the equipment it is used in. The request came to bbceng via Dave Porter.

28 Feb 2017 CH1/18E Lee Mouatt writes: "I'm looking for any mechanical drawings of the CH1/18E type metal chassis, used for various BBC rack modules such as the PS2/49..... I have a few BBC studio racks fitted with some modules, but I have a fair few empty spaces in them. I was hoping to fashion a few of the CH1/18E style chassis for retrofitting other audio gear into the BBC racks. Cheers, Lee".
16 Nov 2016 "Digger" Dimmock

Gavin Dimmock writes: I found your web page and email while searching online for information about my late grand father, James William Dimmock.

He was employed by the BBC between July 1946 and May 1972 when he retired. I believe he worked in S.P.&.I.D. and, for a time at Bentinck House. I have very little information about his working life and am keen, if possible, to discover more.

I believe he was possibly a draughtsman. His nickname (I do not know why) was Digger.

If you are able to provide me with any suggestions of how to proceed, or where to go next, I would be so very grateful.

13 Oct 2016 Alexandra Palace - colour date?

John Escolme, BBC History Manager, writes: "I am trying to find out when Alexandra Palace was equipped for 625 line colour production.  Did they get it done in time for the Wimbledon colour launch 1st July 1967, News and Sport from AP was at 1930 that day.  I suspect it was not ready, as only a select number of programmes went out that day in colour officially, and all from, or via TVC.

Wimbledon, all week +Match of the Day
One Pair of Eyes, Sat July 1st
The Virginian, Mon July 3rd
Impact, Thurs 6th July
Late Night Line Up all week

This info comes from the RT at the time, so I dont preclude colour coming from AP early, but it might be that AP was not ready for 625 line colour at all until News started in colour on BBC1 in 1969, which of course then was still coming from AP. I do realise there were colour tests from 1954, but thats another matter.

Any ideas?   Thanks   John" 

28-Aug-2015 AM6/11, UN14/9, ADR F600-LB


Jonnie Wacker is looking for a schematic for an AM6/11 and analogue delay UN14/9. He also has an old BBC rack that contains an ADR F600-LB limiter and some PYE mic amplifiers (the type with half moon faders) and would like to get hold of the pinout/schematics for these units. "Thanks for the help much appreciated."
13-Aug-2015 Technical Instructions


Nick Cutmore writes: "Before the BBC introduced the Apparatus in Code Order folders, technical information was held in "non unit code specific" TIs - each of which related to a particular specialisation such as "Recording" or "Sound". The information for each of these specialisations was published in a folder (or folders) in sections (the sections themselves were sometimes published individually as well in paper covers). The attached photos show the types of binder I am referring to.

I'm trying to track down as many of these documents as possible to scan them for posterity, but I'm not sure which "disciplines" existed. Matters are somewhat complicated by the fact that the information in these TIs was sometimes redistributed amongst the later ACO binders when they were introduced (e.g. "Sound" sections 3 & 4 were removed from the TI folder and re-inserted in the ACO binders - so, for example, "Sound" TI S3 part2 covered the AMC/2 amplifier and those pages now exist only in the ACO).

I know of these main groupings (and by looking at what I have I've guessed the number of sections for each group) : GP (General Purpose ?) (Sections 1-6 at least) RECORDING (sections 1-13 at least) SOUND (sections 1-8 at least) TRANSMITTERS (sections 1-14 at least) VIDEO (Sections 1-12 at least)

And, just to complicate things even more, there are even earlier TIs (for instance see "TT2" or "TT6" in the scans provided by Brian Proffit) which were replaced by the series I'm currently describing.

If anyone has any definitive information about this documentation, I'd be most grateful to hear about it. I have now pretty much scanned all I have and will be sending Martin copies of my remaining scans shortly."

Click here to see the Technical Instructions on this web site.

13-Aug-2015 Lister generator


Roy Craggs writes: "I have in my collection a Lister 9 kva genny, powered by an FR2, water-cooled engine. Believed to be from BBC Radio Scotland as part of the Cold War contingency planning for enabling radio stations to continue transmitting in times of national emergency, ie grid failure, due to bombing. Dating from the late 1950s, I have some service records and also the control cabinet which enables fine tuning of both voltage and frequency. I intend to show the rig at vintage shows and would welcome any info on these units deployed by the BBC, or any photos showing them installed. Unusually for Lister engines, they appear to have been supplied from the factory in black, rather than Lister green. Anyone out there remember them? All info gratefully received. Thanks"
10-Aug-2015 Technical books


Roger Amos is seeking a good home for books owned by his father who was the accomplished technical author S.W. Amos. Click here to see a list of the books.  Please make contact if you can help.
29-June-2015 LIM2 and CMU/9


Martin "obtrucker" writes: I am looking for a LIM2 and a CMU/9. Can anyone on the info exchange help?"
12-May-2015 Tesla RD150yb, CAT17, SWB18


Graham White has recently acquired a Tesla RD150yb 150KW tube/valve about 1.1 Metres tall. He believes that these were installed as equivalent to Marconi CAT17s from about 1935 onwards. He has found a passing suggestion that they were used in Marconi SWB 18 Senders, but he has no further clues. Whilst data sheets are readily available, almost no other information seems to exist.

Graham writes: "It's a wonderful tube from a great age in Broadcasting History that I would very much like to be able to add to the life of the valve. I suspect it didn't start out in the UK, but there was a manufacturing arrangement between Marconi Chelmsford and Tesla Czechoslovakia, then known as Radioslavia, from about 1934. The original packing case which I have (large) only states (RS189 Geneve). Case D24. serial No on the heater tube suggests 23C. I don't know if that is early or late,,! It's New Old Stock and was never installed! I appreciate that it's very unlikely that I will ever discover it's intended Sender or site, but to gain any info on BBC or other Senders that used these tubes would be a giant leap forwards! I believe that it could have been destined for either Programme broadcast or SW beam Station usage, but can't confirm either. Anything you offer by way of information or pointers would be most welcome indeed."

Click to enlarge

3-Feb-2015 Sound studio installations


Pete Croom has many pictures such as those shown below.  Can you identify them please?

(click to enlarge)

John Warburton writes: "Might I suggest that the first image, of the Mark III, is BBC Radio York? It certainly looks exactly as I remember it from 1984–5, and is Cubicle 1B, looking into the centre studio. The tiny cupboard opening underneath the grams contained the two stereo Surrey Electronics RIAA amplifiers for the pickups. Even if it wasn't BBC Radio York in Bootham Row, it was lovely to see a pic of something very close to where I spent nearly to very good years."

Nick Garrod writes: "The first colour picture is a BBC Mk3 desk and could be anywhere.  I believe the last colour picture is cubicle A at BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, looking through the glass window to the shared studio, with cubicle B in the background. The desk is a Neve mark 3 and I believe there were only three Neve equipped stations - Cambridge, Norwich and Northampton. There was a rapid expansion in the early 80's and Equipment Department, could not meet the demand for BBC Mk 3 desks. I would peg the date as pre 1986 as I think I had installed the CD players then. The other pictures are most likely of our Peterborough Studio which had a Audix desk. The ITC triple stack cart and Sonifex recorder are correct for the station. I was engineer there from 84-88 with a short spell away at TV in Norwich, before I moved to News at TVC."  Information added on 19th April 2015.

In due course these pictures, together with suitable captions, will feature elsewhere on

3-Feb-2015 AT CL607 compressor limiters


Chris Owen writes "I have what I believe to be a piece of ex BBC CR equipment. It's a pair of AT CL607 compressor limiters in a 4u 19 inch rack mount case. I have failed to find any information on these units and I would be grateful if anyone could supply me with information about them. I would particularly like to find circuit diagrams."
14-Dec-2014 Ascension Receiving Station


Phil Brooks has drafted More Ascension Memories : The Receiving Station and would appreciate any comments, amendments or other observations you may have before finalising the piece.  The result will appear on bbceng.
12-Dec-2014 Dr Who


Ryan Danes writes: "Looking for memories of Dr Who creator Syd Newman for a new book. If you knew him, or worked with him please get In touch." [Please note that I am posting this because BBC engineers might have known Syd Newman.  Non-engineering matters are outside the scope of bbceng.]
10-Oct-2014 Mag Reclaim at TFS Ealing


Robert Philpot writes: "In the mid 1960s I was an Assistant Film Recordist working out of TFS Ealing. During a slack period I was put to work in “Mag Reclaim” where we worked to recover usable mag stock from the transfer suites. Most of this was sold outside the BBC, much of it to go on to the Thunderbirds studios in Slough by the way!

The reason why I am writing is that we had a very temperamental machine that was designed to stress the 16mm stock and check that it was of sufficient quality to be resold. It may have been made by Philips although my memory is very hazy now. Basically, it measured width, thickness etc. After this it was passed round a tight bend to see if any magnetic coating fell off after which it recorded a tone which was replayed to check for drops out. As this had a rudimentary automatic control system this was quite an expensive piece of kit I’d imagine.  I have never read anything about this and that is just about all that I can remember after 50 years (except the large “Tempus Fugit Here” banner that was attached to the top) as the job was mind blowingly boring! Do you know any more about it or have a photo (unlikely) by any chance?"

30-Sep-2014 Ken Chapman


Robert Card writes: "I worked at the equipment department in the early 80's. I would be keen to get in contact with my supervisor, Ken Chapman. We were working on Local Radio desks at the time - in Avenue House, Chiswick.  I'd be grateful if you would you please put the above out on your web site so that Ken [or someone who knows Ken] might pick it up. Thank you."
15-Sep-2014 Quadrant faders


Laurence Hunt writes: "I'm trying to resurrect a couple of quadrant faders for use in my work and looking for replacement knobs... ...has anybody any spares knocking about?
4-Sep-2014 LS3/5a


Xie writes: "I'm a super fans of LS3/5a.I have some questions about the very early Rogers 3/5a and the Research Department,Engineering Division of BBC to consult you.Appriciate very much if you know the questions,and please help me to find the answers.If possible,please help me to consult some old staffs who had been in Research Department. My questions are about the very early Rogers big gold badge with metal lable on back,the serial numbers are No.019 and 020.Did you ever see them before or have any data about them?Did the very early serial numbers gold badge Rogers has been used for some certain usings,like No.003&004 been used for the prototype of Rogers factory.Did you ever use the No.019&020 for your researching and modifing on the Research Department?Did you ever use a stamp of"Research Department,Engineering Division THE BRITISH BROADCASTING BORPORATION"?Did you stamp it on your Rogers 3/5A's inner panels after they had been researhed and modified? Thank you very much."

27-Nov-2013 Athlone transmitting station


Martin Ellen writes: This subject is not strictly a matter for bbceng as it concerns a transmitting station in Ireland, but I have received a question that could probably be answered by visitors to bbceng.  The station at Moydrum near Athlone still has its original transmitters from 1932.  How does this compare with other transmitting stations around the world?  Is there anywhere else that still has transmitters from this period?  Click here to see pictures and descriptions (click on the individual thumbnail pictures).

A rapid response would be appreciated as work is presently taking place to determine the future of the Athlone transmitting station, which is no longer in service.  I received the enquiry from a representative of TTC International.

3-Nov-13 RD5/5 Data Logger and EQ5/546 Cable EQ’s


Richard Oakley has a very large collection of BBC coded equipment. Amongst several hundred units, the collection includes the only survivor of some of the designs, for example OS1/1, a Telecine panel monochrome type and Tariff 1.  Some of the first items came from Pebble Mill including the OS1/1 which was found in the basement, someone had kept it rather than let it be scrapped. Most of the items in the collection are studio equipment but there are a few items like the GE4M/561 which are either for radio links or transmitting stations, which are the hardest to find but do show up. In the future the collection will be arranged in apparatus bays in such a way as to provide a reasonable layout as the equipment would have been used together with patching, power supplies and power distribution. At this point it will be available for private viewing. Most of the equipment if not all is currently working, the only exceptions are incomplete units. One unit that is definitely rare is an RD5/5 Data Logger which is paired with a GE4/6C Auto AF Test Generator (from Wales), and Richard would like to know what it was made it for? Recently a sub rack arrived with two EQ5/546 Cable EQ’s and a control panel for a further four DA’s which is shown in the picture. Does anyone know which DA this panel is designed to work with? Richard does not know of any design that has remote control.
28-Oct-13 Tolkien in Oxford


Lydia Berry writes: "Researchers at Oxford University are interested in hearing from any member of staff who may have worked on a BBC production from March 1968 entitled "Tolkien in Oxford", presented by John Izzard. However we would like to talk to anyone who may have assisted with the production and may have further information about the filming or interviews."
8-Apr-13 Calrec Minimixers


Matt Oliver writes: "Are there any BBC engineers that may remember using Calrec Minimixers? (MK1 versions.) If so, I'd be interested in hearing them share their experiences with these. Mine is Serial no 077. I'm also looking for a schematic for the DB1491 Compressor/Limiter module.  (Click on the pictures to enlarge them.)  
21-Feb-13 Calrec console


Brian Moran writes: "I would like to expand a BBC Calrec J-series console I have in my possession. I would be interested in any complete consoles or any parts (PQ10,/PQ14/PQ15S, RL23'S or any console frame/sidecars etc), in any condition. Thanks."
8-Feb-13 RP2/7 disc reproduction


Marnix Bosman has just acquired a couple of RP2/7 disc reproduction cards and would be very interested to know something more about them such as schematics and/or pin-outs.
29-Nov-12 HD recording:  "Prince of the Pagodas"


Ron Isted writes: "First of all, though I spent several years as a vision mixer before becoming a tel. producer/director, I am NOT an engineer, so please excuse any technical errors in the next paragraph!

About 1990 I remember directing a performance from Covent Garden of the above ballet, using experimental HD equipment developed (I think) by BBC Research Dept Kingswood Warren. I am sure I was told they operated on a 1250 line system (ie twice 625) and were therefore more compatible with the then current system. Any information about the type and number of cameras available, also recording details (I believe it used four digital machines, but I may be wrong about that). Finally does anybody know if the recording is likely to be still in existence, as I believe some of RD's archive has been transferred to modern formats? Thanks for any help"

9-Feb-12 Painton faders


Tom Hakava is looking for Painton faders. Type GS 100 345 or GS 100 349. Any leads or comments greatly appreciated.



1-Dec-11 Gain adjustment on AM7/12


Flavio Encinas writes: "Now I'm ready to mount all of the units I have after testing the power supplies (all test perfect), but still missing a couple of details. On the pdf that you have sent to me there is a gain adjustment on AM7/12 modules that I don't know how to set, if it needs an external pot or if its a link I have to add between pins 8 , 10 and 11. If you can search for this information will be good for me. I'm still looking for any info on PS2/167 and nothing came up yet if you can find some will be fantastic. Thanks a lot."
10-Nov-11 TE1/7 transistor tester


John Sykes is seeking information on the TE1/7 Transistor Tester.

Click the thumbnail to enlarge.

10-Nov-11 Unidentified early BBC Camera


Brian Summers writes: "In this picture of the experimental colour studio, the smaller of the two cameras is unidentified, the larger is a Marconi three-tube 3" IO RGB camera the BD848. The unidentified camera is a bit of a conundrum, in the early 1960s colour cameras were Huge! and this camera is very compact for a colour camera at that time. To me it has the look of a Marconi. From the size it must have used Vidicons in a two or three tube arrangement.

I have asked the most likely person to know, who suggested it might be a Philips LDK2 precursor, I'm not so sure myself. There seems to be 2 camera cables at the rear, possibly BICC Mk4b, it was common at the time for colour cameras to have more than one cable. This would have given 6 co-ax circuits back to the CCU, R,G & B plus Live Drive (scan?) and return viewfinder.

If anyone can help with the identity I would be very pleased. I have not seen this one before and have no other pictures of it. The original pictures came from Michael Barrett.

Subsequently Brian added: I have found a bit more about the camera, it is a Philips 3 x Plumbicon experimental camera. There is a picture and a short description in the "SMPTE volume 73 page 475". There is also a reference to the Philips technical review 25 1963/64 no. 6/7 which may have an illustration.

10-Nov-11 Request for restoration


Jake Clark-Darby writes: "I recently obtained some equipment from a storage clearance from one of the engineers from Radio Caroline. Amongst some other things I have a rack with:
1x UN10/47 telephone control and balance unit
1x AM20/4 program peak level meter
2x AM6/18 limiting amplifiers
(All in a 2U rack with power supply.)

I would love to use this equipment in my studio and although it powers up it does not seem to function properly. Would somebody be willing to restore this equipment for me?

10-Nov-11 Mixer from BBC Radio Bristol


Ahmed of Studio 1999 writes: "Has anyone ever seen a mixer like this before? Its not like any BBC desk I have ever come across. Apparently it came out of BBC Radio Bristol. It is 12 channels and stereo with bass, treble, pan, echo and cue send on each channel. All the pcb boards have 'acorn' written on them.  Any info much appreciated as I hope to begin to bring it back to life soon!

Click thumbnails to enlarge:

10-Nov-11 BBC master clock, model CA1/6A/118


Text removed by request
7-Nov-11 Rolls Royce Radio!


David Adams would like to know if anyone can identify this picture (click to enlarge) and the occasion. He writes "It is a local Daventry photo obviously of the boy in front of a BBC vehicle. The Rolls Royce Club have identified as possibly a Phantom II or 20/25 chassis which were of used for hearses and ambulances etc. They suspect it was later obtained and modified as a BBC publicity vehicle possibly post 2nd World War. I wonder if it was to advertise the new Third Programme which started transmission from Daventry on MW in March 1950. The BBC Photo Archive are currently scratching their heads as are the RR Enthusiasts Club. The photo is in the Daventry Town Museum Photo Archive".
7-Nov-11 HF transmitting station on Antigua


Dave Porter is seeking the answer to this question from Mike Cooper.  "DXLD coverage of the closing of the BBC Caribbean service makes me wonder whatever happened to the relay and monitoring station the BBC had on Antigua. The antennae, located on the eastern side of the island, were impressive. I vaguely remember hearing that the site was to be put up for sale years ago, but have heard nothing since. I wonder about the equipment (transmitting, receiving, antennae) and the land. Perhaps a DXLD reader has some insight? (Mike Cooper, Apr 3, DXLD)"
25-Oct-11 LSU10 speaker cabinet


Jimmy (London) is seeking a BBC LSU10 speaker cabinet(LB8).
23-Oct-11 DRD5  transciption turntable


Jimmy (London) is seeking information on the DRD5 studio BBC transciption turntable unit circa 1956.  He has the upper part of the unit and is searching for the drive electronics and/or cabinet.
18-Jun-11 BBC Engineering Manuals


Chris Friedlander has kindly offered to provide information from various BBC Engineering manuals, within reason, on request: BBC Engineering Practice, BBC Technical Instruction S10, London Control Room operations manual. The equipment described in these publications was replaced by the BBC many years ago.  Click here for more information.
7-Mar-11 ME16/3 standard level meter


Chris Friedlander has an ME16/3 standard level meter (the thermocouple AC one) and is wondering if there is any maintenance / calibration / schematic info around for this. According to the pcb the design drawing number should be D40934. He says that the unit seems to be working perfectly (after a long-ish warm up) and giving accurate readings. However, as with all these things, having service information would be wise insurance.
6-Dec-10 Computer Originated World


Philip Pemberton is thinking about doing an FPGA reimplementation of the Computer Originated World, as shown on Andrew Wiseman's "TV Room" website, and elsewhere. He writes:-

"I've got a pretty good idea how the hardware "might" work, but I have some questions about the BBC implementation -- specifically how the anti-aliasing worked (I'm guessing the 'landmass' data was alpha-blended), the compression method for the image data, and if any copies of the EPROMs and/or circuit diagrams are known to exist. (this would be an incredible long-shot, but it'd be nice to make the reimplementation as accurate as possible)

I've been told that the design was done by Brian Mason but thus far I've been unable to find any further information. Do you have any idea how I might be able to contact Brian, or someone else who might know about the COW?"

31-July-10 Midlands Media Museum


The Midlands Media Museum has recently set up a website dedicated to the history of broadcasting in the Midlands. Its ultimate aim is to be able to create a museum (either in the physical sense, or as online documentation) of Midlands TV and radio production history.

They are looking for kind, generous donations of broadcast memorabilia from the Midlands. Maybe it's old scripts, broadcasting equipment, props ... anything that represents the history of broadcasting in the Midlands region. They're also looking for people to write their personal memories for the website. Perhaps you worked at the old ATV studios on Broad Street in Birmingham, or worked at BBC Pebble Mill - they would love to hear from you.

30-May-10 Studer B62 documents available


Neil Gilchrist says: "In the early 1990s I purchased an immaculate Studer B62 (for £10!) in a junk sale at Kingswood Warren. With it I acquired 2 documents: a complete service manual for the Studer A62 (the same machine, but in a "portable" case) and an RD "provisional handbook" for the B62, which appears to have been written by Studer. Both documents contain circuit diagrams, but those in the latter are specifically labelled "B62". The playback amplifier circuit has a couple of alterations, made in blue ballpoint, but that's all."  Neil has kindly offered to scan these documents and make them available.  Please click on the link above if you would like to request a copy.  You might also be amused, and pleased, to read this story about a Studer A80.

Information requested by Doug Fisher.

29-May-10 AM6/11 Limiting amplifier


Karl von der Linden says: "Im working professionally at synthesizer service department in Germany to repair access and other synthesizers. But also I'm a hobby recordist. I've got a BBC AM6/11 Limiting amp. I do not know if the machine works or not because I have no pin assignment for the two multipin connectors on the module or the schematics.  If you can help me it will great. Many thanks for help.
13-Mar-10 Local Radio Mk 3 Desk


James West says: "I'm interested in the development of the BBC Local Radio Mk 3 Desk, particularly the prototype installed at Radio Cumbria, any unusual variants such as the "music" version installed at Radio Merseyside and commercially produced versions by the likes of Neve. Do you have any information or pictures that would help please?"
5-Mar-10 HMV Concert 600 Electrical Reproducer


Mike Cronk is refurbishing an HMV Concert 600 Electrical Reproducer (amp and speaker) and seeking some drawings.  In particularly he is keen to get some drawings of the speakers to see how the metal foil attached itself to what he believes is a moving coil.  He also wants to find a source for the foil. He has tried the IET archive with no luck and also the gramophone museum.  Any help would be appreciated.
5-Mar-10 Ken Chapman


Jamie Searle works as the engineer at BBC Radio York, having spent the early 1980s at Equipment Department in Avenue House, Chiswick, assembling and testing the BBC Local Radio Mk 3 mixer- these desks are still in service in several radio stations, including York!

At the time he worked with Jeremy Lowe (now working at World Service) and Ken Chapman who was their supervisor. He is still in touch with Jeremy but would like to make contact with Ken. Any leads would be appreciated.  Here is a picture from the test lab in 1985.  Jamie is wearing the bow-tie and Ken is standing next to him. Click the picture to enlarge it.

15-Nov-09 Radiophonic Workshop


Richard Hollingum (University of Northampton) is researching into the pre-history of the Radiophonic Workshop, including the various strands in radio that developed after the Second World War that led to the creation of the Workshop in 1958, where his research ends. Part of his research is through oral history and he would be pleased to talk to, and record, anyone employed by the BBC in an engineering capacity during the period 1945-1958.
15-Nov-09 UN1/715 video measuring unit


Brian Summers (who runs is on the lookout for a handbook for the UN1/715 video measuring unit (weaver box). He has one in use and sooner or later it is bound to stop working!  Please also see lists of other 'difficult wants': TV and Radio.
15-Nov-09 Eddystone receiver



Chris Pettitt is currently researching an Eddystone receiver that was used by the BBC in 1956/7 to monitor band 1 and band 2 transmissions. It looks to be a special version of the Eddystone S890 which was sold to the BBC as a radio microphone receiver. The set has a designation which he thinks confirms it as BBC property HR/20A/176. Do you recognise this kind of designation? Do you know what the set was used for: local station monitoring or rebroadcast perhaps? Any information would be helpful. Click the picture to enlarge it.
22-Sep-09 Ottringham - OSE5


David Porter would appreciate any extra information that a reader of BBCeng could offer re Ottringham.  See the article on Aspidistra and OSE5 in Technical Reviews.
22-Sep-09 Mystery BBC vehicle



Catherine Porter writes: "I'm about to be the proud owner of an gold (believe this is the original colour) H reg (1990) VW Caravelle gl. The current owner tells me the van was originally used by the BBC as an outside broadcasting unit and I'm very keen to get more background on it, a picture would be fabulous. The van was then sold to the owner of a gym and then to the present owner in London. The current owner also told me that before he converted it to a camper the walls were lined with a bright green felt material and it still had some of the transmitter items and generator inside. The only tell tale sign of it's previous life are 6 black 'knobs' evenly spaced out on the roof (I have no idea what the use was).

If you can shed any light on this or know of anybody who may be able to help I'd be very grateful. The owner was told by owner number 2 that there were pictures of it being used at a cricket match somewhere in England but I know this doesn't give much to go on.

I've just received the old copies of the vehicle log book and the 1st owner listed is Britsish Broadcasting Corp CW Lease UK Ltd, CW House, Cookham Road, Bracknell, RG121RR. Perhaps this leasing firm will jog someone's memory."

25-Aug-09 Novachord




Dan Wilson, an electronic design engineer & vintage synth enthusiast writes: "I'm currently importing an extremely rare 1939 Novachord into the UK. The Novachord was the world's first commercial polyphonic synthesizer, released in 1939, containing 163 valves and weighing 1/4 ton. The reason why I mention this is that I've been told that the BBC had several of these extremely expensive instruments ($1800 in 1939) during WWII and one of the most famous users was Arthur Young who played with Vera Lynn in many of her famous recordings.

I have been advised that my instrument is one of few surviving in the whole of Europe - I am now very keen to know if there is just a chance one of these fine instruments is in storage or on show somewhere at the BBC."  I am sure that any other relevant information would be of interest.

25-Aug-09 Hadrian Jeffs,
Pulham Airstation



Terry Clarkson of Dickleburgh and Rushall Parish Council is trying to contact Hadrian Jeffs on a matter pertaining to the Pulham Airstation.  If you know how to contact Hadrian would you please let Terry know.
12-Aug-09 Audio Test Set


Michael Ward writes: ".... looking for EP14/1 Audio Test Set line-up / calibration info. Maybe circuit info as well if possible. Thanks.
17-Jul-09 Studer A80 remote



Sean Williams writes: "I have a couple of ex BBC Scotland Studer A-80s with the BBC fader start section on the right hand side. I am unable to get the fader start to work and am wondering whether this could be to do with the EDAC connector needing to have some pins shorted for full functionality.

I have another A-80 remote control unit but this does not function either, when used with the ex-BBC machines. I am wondering whether there is some critical modification that has interfered with normal remote operation.

What I am trying to do is configure remote operation generally and to install Capstan Control so that I can use the +/- 7 semitones varispeed for use in the studio for making Musique Concrète.

This is part of my PhD research into the physicality of early electronic music practice.

Any help or advice on working out the remote control functions would be greatly appreciated."

16-Jun-09 Sony VO 7630 Umatic Video Recorder



Roy Phillips says: "I have recently purchased a Sony VO 7630 Umatic Video Recorder, from a large corporate AV Department that was closed down. I understand that this machine was used by the BBC TV production in large numbers, but is now generally obsolete. It is very difficult to obtain help from Sony for technical help. I am wondering if your library has a copy of the technical handbook for this machine ? I would be pleased to purchase a copy, should it be possible, or just a pdf/photocopy of the connection field at the rear of the machine. Although it is generally obvious what the inputs and outputs are, I would particularly like to have the connections for the TV Recording socket (this is a 8 pin Cinch socket), and what the connections are to the Dubbing in/out connectors (6 pin), I do not recognize the manufacturer of these latter connectors. Trusting you may be able to help to keep this excellent machine in full use."
19-Apr-09 Painton faders


Erik Alderink would like to know if Painton faders are balanced, and how many steps they have. He says "I live in the States, and seeing one in person, let alone opening one up is an impossibility! Thanks for your time, any information would be greatly appreciated."
19-Mar-09 Studer B62


Doug Fisher would like to obtain (for a friend) a copy of the circuit diagram of the Studer B62, as modified by BBC Designs Department.  Help would be much appreciated.

Johan De Haan would also like a copy.

8-Mar-09 Woofferton staff list


Jeff Cant would be pleased to receive an email from ex-Wooffertonians who do not yet appear on his  tentative WOF Staff list. He would like anyone who qualifies to contact him with details of their service at this transmitting station.
3-Mar-09 Calrec J series MK2


Brian Moran is hoping that someone may be able to help: "I have part of a Calrec J series MK2 of which I am trying to complete restore and put back into action. So far I have an eight channel bucket loaded with PQ-14s, RL-23s & Painton faders. I also have in my posession the Monitor section. Therefore my first stop is to find an echo return section and hopefully more mic pre input console sections. These could be complete or various modules console frame, PQ-14s PQ-15s etc. Any help would be much appreciated."
12-Feb-09 Crowborough


Doug Morris is seeking information, including photos and diagrams, of the the ASPI1 and other transmitters at Crowborough.  He has "collected" virtually everything, pictures and information, that is available on the internet and has the following books "The secret Wireless War" by Geoffrey Pidgeon, 'The Secret History of the PWE' by David Garnett and 'The Black Game' by Ellic Howe.
2-Feb-09 BBC recovery vehicle



Andy Lambert is seeking information about BBC Recovery Vehicles.  At this web site you will find one of the many picture galleries that he hosts on his vehicle recovery site.

The 15th vehicle down is a BBC recovery vehicle from around 25 years ago. The 14th picture has been suggested is the same vehicle some time earlier (He cannot see it himself). The question is does anyone know if it was re-boded, or if there were two of them, perhaps at different times.

29-July-10 Curriculum for A/B/C Courses


Andy Hasluem, a veteran of BBC WN A79 course (TV) 1980, now works for Turner Broadcast in the US, and the Company is petitioning for his Permanent Residency (Green Card) with US Immigration. They need transcripts (details) of his course of study for the BBC Engineering Certificate, to evaluate his (foreign) education. That means the curriculum for his A/B/C Courses, and timeline if possible. He needs this information urgently, so would greatly appreciate any help.

Records of courses from this era are no longer kept by the BBC.

29-May-10 PB1/L1 rotary faders



Martin Kin says: "I am looking for one or more PB1/L1 rotary faders and housings for a Type A restoration project. I am also looking for hybrid transformers and anything else of interest related to this series of equipment.  Please would you kindly post this message on your noticeboard - perhaps someone out there can help?.

Resolved with help from John Phillips.

13-Mar-10 LL/81MSC Audio transformers


Martin Dale (G6ABU) says: "I'm looking for any data on this and other similar audio transformers as used in BBC engineering equipment; Also LL/75MSC, LL/76MSC, LL/85ASC LL/88MSC Any info would be gratefully received such as impedance, wire colour / connections, ratios etc. I have trawled the web but no joy. Am I right in assuming these were made for the BBC by Gardners?"

Resolved with help from John Phillips and John Meredith.

1-Oct-08 BBC mobile recording equipment vans during WWII


Phil Waterman is looking for information about BBC mobile recording equipment vans during WWII, as he has a truck which was used by the BBC in New York City at the end of the war. If you are interested about information on the truck and information he has tracked down take a look at this web page where he has information about the truck including video of it covering a parade at the end of the Second World War. While interested in all aspects of the mobile equipment, he is particularly interested in photos or list of equipment that the these vehicles would have carried. He has owned the truck for nearly 30 years and it and its history always draws interest at antique car and truck shows. Any additional information will be greatly appreciated.
9-Jun-08 AM6/7



Waynne Smart recently bought from eBay a BBC AM6/7 Limiting Amplifier (No.254) and two power units PS2/4.  He would like to get the unit restored and back to full working order and set in to its own rack unit with XLR in/outs with the power supply.  He is looking for someone who may be able to restore and rack-mount the units for him.  He would also appreciate help with sourcing the circuit diagrams.  Click here to see the unit on eBay. 

The RD&CE book lists the following: AM6/7  -  Programme Limiting Amplifier for transmitters and unattended studios and as a compressor for "pop" music types of programme. Includes noise gate. Voiceover input, top tilt for use at FM transmitters, and relay to guard automatic monitoring apparatus. CHl/26B, Pegs 23, 39. DD 1968. DD Spec 3.471. DDHB 3.94. EDI. ACO. OBSOLESCENT

4-Jun-08 BBC Leeds


Stuart Childs would like to get in touch with people that used to work in the BBC Broadcasting House based on Woodhouse Lane in Leeds.  He is currently conducting some research into the history of the building, with the aim of curating some interviews and photographs for an exhibition in the newly - renovated building.
11-Apr-08 DK4/16 presenters desk


Jim Harpur writes: "I'm the proud owner of 2 x RP2/8 disc reproducers, and what's left of a DK4/16 presenters desk.  The turntables still work pretty well, but only the 'bones' of the mixing desk survive.  I would like to rebuild the 'desk', but have no circuit diagrams, or plans for the wooden framed desk.  I wonder if anyone has any old 'plans' to help me with this project.  Many thanks, Jim"

According to the Registered Designs and Coded Equipoment book:  The DK4/16 is a "Studio Presenter's Desk, used in Radio 1 Club programmes, with 2 RP2/8. Contains 8 channels channels.  Transportable wooden desk, formica clad. DD 1972. DDMI 3.548. DDTM 3.125. EDI 10148(1)OCT72."




Transformers etc.


Stuart Winsor has, over the years, "broken up" some old white fronted bookcase units and he has a quantity of mains and audio transformers and other odd bits which might be useful if anyone is trying to repair/resurrect such. He also has some old TIs and information on quite a number of BBC transformers.




Painton faders



Wilfried Kobiolka is looking for old quadrant Painton faders. Do you know where he can find such things. Type Number: GS 100 345 or GS 100 349.

31-Dec-07 SCPD  monthly news magazines


It has been suggested by Rik Brooks that it would be good to include SCPD monthly news magazines on this web site.  If you have a copy of any of the issues and would be willing to help, then would you please email Martin Ellen.





Neve General Purpose Radio Console mk IV


Marco Manieri has just purchased one of these mixing consoles, production no. 10180, from a broker in England.

The broker did not have any documents whatsoever. Luckily, Marco is in possession of a technical manual for a similar desk, only from a different production run, and it appears that some wiring differs.

He would like to get in contact with someone who might be able to help him track down any further documents.






Broadcasting history in the South West



Tony Byers is researching the history of broadcasting in the South West with the aim of setting up an oral history archive based at BBC Plymouth.  This will include interviews with former staff.  He is interested in hearing form anyone who worked at Start Point or BH Plymouth in the war years or the immediate post-war period.  He is also trying to find out what programmes were made at BH in Seymour Road in the 50s and 60s.  One aspect he is trying to find out more about is the visits of war correspondents, including Frank Gillard.  If anyone has any information, recordings or photographs dating from the war onwards please get in touch.  






"Secret" sites


Mobile Transmitter Units



Martin Briscoe is often asked about the old Deferred Facilities network, though like most people he was never told much about it.  He remembers visiting a site at Normandy near Guildford which he would describe as "covert".  How many more of this type of site were there and have any survived?  If anyone has any photographs he is sure that Sub Brit and others would welcome seeing copies.

Also, does anyone know the background to the Mobile Transmitter Units, or have any photographs of them when still equipped inside.  As far as he knows there is there is just the one left rotting away which seems a shame as it should really be saved.




LSU/10 loudspeakers


Tom Goulet has now received a Technical Instruction on LSU/10 loudspeakers, as requested below (The drivers inside turned out to be made by Parmeko and not Pamphonic).

He is now looking for an original amplifier.  If you can help then please make contact via the above link.









Sean Cooper is trying to write an article for his website about the history of the Tacloneston transmission site.  He is researching the history of this Norfolk broadcast site, it's transmitters, operation, construction, etc as it is celebrating 50 years.   Any help, and/or photos (especially from the earlier days) would be greatly appreciated.  Please contact him via his web site.
See also the 20-Mar-06 entry below.

Project closed, but see request regarding Cromer dated 3-Dec-07.

30-Mar-06 Start Point:
U-boat batteries


In the 1950's Start Point had a roomful of submarine batteries to stay on air for 40 seconds in case of a power failure whilst starter cartridges were used to activate the standby generator.  There was a wall plaque stating these batteries had been salvaged from a U-boat that had gone aground there in 1942 and that they were manufactured by Siemens.  If you can provide any more information about these batteries please contact Anne-Marie Davies.  In particular she would like confirmation that they were manufactured by Siemens, because states that Uboat batteries were all made by AFA.

20-Mar-06 Tacolneston


Hadrian Jeffs is writing a book and contributing to a television programme on BBC Look East to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Tacolneston transmitting station in Norfolk, England.  Please contact him if you have any interesting information or anecdotes that would be suitable for publication.  He would like an account of an average day’s transmitting routine in the 1960’s or 70’s (although not too technical as he is aiming for a fairly general audience), as well as what it’s like to go up the tallest structure in Norfolk.

Return to Information Exchange and Contact