Summer in the Sixties
Snapshot of the era
The Sixties were an era of memorable events, fads and fashions. To
jog your memory, we have highlights for art,
style and toys
along with information about related programming in the BBC FOUR season.
the BBC FOUR season:
The Truth About Sixties
A Night in the Sixties
Time Shift: Fantasy
Time Shift: Black
and White Minstrel Show - Revisited
Dennis Potter – The Nigel Barton
Plays (to be confirmed)
TV went colour, Britain's first ever soap was launched
and Dr Who was born…
• Originally an American show, Jukebox Jury
landed in the UK in 1959 but didn't really make it big until 1960.
Involving different celebrities deciding whether new
music releases would be a 'hit' or a 'miss' it often featured big name
guests including The Beatles.
• In 1961 The Avengers hit the small
screen. Featuring English Gent Patrick McNee in his bowler hat and Honor
Blackman oozing sex appeal this show was must-watch TV.
• Now the oldest soap opera in the world, people first
tuned into Coronation Street in 1961.
• With the aim of injecting some gritty realism into
police drama on TV, Z Cars first started in 1962.
The show was named after the then new Ford Zephyr cars
used as patrol vehicles in the series.
• One of the best loved TV characters of all time,
Dr Who, first appeared in 1963 with his Tardis and
the infamous Daleks that scared generations of school children.
• Steptoe and Son – Father and son
team Albert and Harold were TV's first (and probably favourite) rag
and bone men. This pair of scoundrels, first on screen in 1963, had
the nation gripped and made the show one of the most popular British
sitcoms of all time.
• Originally transmitted from a converted church in
Manchester in 1964, Top of the Pops was initially commissioned
for six shows but is still going strong today.
The very first episode featured Dusty Springfield, The
Beatles and Cliff Richard and The Shadows.
• Thunderbirds – This group of puppets
first set out in 1965 to save the world and ended up captivating the
• The Magic Roundabout was created
by the French author Serge Danot in 1965. Each five minute episode of
this weird and wonderful series featured the delights of Dougal the
dog, pink cow Ermintrude and their other groovy friends!
• Til Death Us Do Part - Warren Mitchell
played arch bigot Alf Garnett who from 1966 onwards found fault with
everyone and everything except his beloved West Ham United, in this
popular British comedy.
• From 1967 onwards a former secret agent called Number
6 was kidnapped and kept against his will in a mysterious village in
cult TV show The Prisoner.
Every week he endeavoured to escape but was always recaptured.
• A cheeky red fox called Basil Brush
first hit screens in 1968.
• Dad's Army the series started in
1968 and produced around 80 episodes in the nine years that it ran.
The term Dad's Army was given to the British Home Guard
during World War II, as it was predominately made up of men who didn't
qualify for active service.
• In 1969 school children and their parents alike fell
in love with The Clangers - a family of cute little
pink knitted aliens living and whistling on a blue, cratered moon somewhere