History of the BBC

Explore the history of the BBC since its foundation in 1922 to the present day

  • Noel’s House PartyThirty years ago BBC audiences came face to face with hit team Mr Blobby and Noel Edmunds when they were invited for the first time to Crinkley Bottom. One of the most successful Saturday night TV shows of all time, Noel’s House Party saw viewing figures of 15 million at one time. BBC South reporter Richard Latto looks back.
  • AnniversariesOn 3 December 1978 the BBC began its ambitious plan to broadcast a television version of each of Shakespeare's 37 plays, starting with Romeo and Juliet. The project was devised by Cedric Messina and took seven years to complete.
  • BBC 100 Voices: Entertaining the UK85 years ago, the BBC broadcast the world’s first entertainment TV programme. Transmitted ahead of the launch of the Corporation’s full TV service, Here’s Looking at You was something of a surprise and set the scene for generations of popular programmes to come. Drawing on newly-released interviews from the BBC Oral History Collection, 100 Voices explores the varied landscape of broadcast entertainment – from comedy to natural history.
  • Television Centre - A Streetview tourTake a virtual tour of the studios and production areas of Television Centre, captured in time shortly before the building was refurbished in 2013.
  • BBC History PartneringUsing the hook of some of our recent anniversaries, here are new and original poems, news reports and comedy shorts created by the writers, reporters and dramatists of the future, in partnership with BBC History.
  • BBC Broadcasting MomentsThe machinery of broadcasting - from crystal sets to colour cameras, Elinor Groom Curator of Television and Broadcast at the Science Museum Group explores the gems of BBC Heritage Collection.
  • BBC Heritage TrailFind out more about the buildings and the interesting roles they’ve played in the BBC’s history. Our interactive map will help you plan your journey around the BBC Heritage Trail blue plaque scheme.
  • BBC Props Collection: Prop of the WeekTypewriter - Alistair Cooke travelled across the USA with this typewriter for his Letter from America.
  • BBC Buildings Collection: Building of the WeekWood Norton - For many years this mansion, dating back to medieval times was the BBC's principle engineering training centre.
  • BBC Art Collection: Wall friezesFriezes - the iconic works by Gilbert Bayes on the walls of the BBC Radio Theatre.
  • BBC Technology Collection: Item of the WeekMicrophone - the Round-Sykes that changed the sound of broadcasting.
  • History of LGBTQ+ and the BBCAn LGBTQ+ timeline of classic BBC programme clips, major historical moments, and archive documents.
  • History of Children at the BBCSince Children's Hour in 1922, children's programmes have always been at the heart of the BBC's public service remit.
  • History of Women at the BBCA fresh and surprising story about pioneering women in broadcasting.
  • History of Diversity at the BBCIn June 1948, Britain began the process of becoming multi-cultural and post-Imperial. How did the BBC respond?