From the BBC Archives: The first 21 years of the World Service

BBC-AT-WAR

Many thanks to SWLing Post contributor, Andrea Borgnino, who shares a link to the excellent archived radio documentary, The first 21 years of the World Service, via the BBC World Service‘s online audio archives.

The recording/broadcast dates from December, 18 1953. Here’s the description of the recording:

The first 21 years of the World Service: how it began in 1938, its important role in WW2 and its aftermath, including historic moments as they were first broadcast by Churchill, de Gaulle, Eisenhower.

Click here to listen to the documentary via the BBC World Service.

VOG Interval Signal

I learned an interesting fact in this documentary: I had no idea that the BBC used the Greek radio interval signal for their Greek language service while Greece was occupied in WWII. After liberation, the BBC Director General “solemnly” handed the famous interval signal–“the sound of shepherds’ pipes mingling with the bells of their flocks”–back to Greece. Amazing.

The Greek radio interval signal is one of my all-time favorites. Indeed, my mobile phone’s ringtone is the VOG interval signal:

If you would like to add this ringtone to your mobile phone, check out this post from 2013.

Spread the radio love

3 thoughts on “From the BBC Archives: The first 21 years of the World Service

  1. David Freeborough

    The BBC World Service 21st anniversary programme is likely to be from 1959, rather than 1953. At 27 minutes 27 seconds it refers to a letter sent by the Hungarian radio in 1956. The source of the confusion seems to be that the BBC Empire Service started in 1932, while this was renamed the BBC Overseas Service when European langauge programmes were launched in 1938.

    Reply
  2. Michael Meyer

    I smiled when I read about using VOG as ringtone on the phone. Good to hear I’m not the only one with that idea ?. My iPhones ringtone for the past few years have been Radio Netherlands church bells. On YouTube, several shortwave interval signals are available in good quality.

    Reply
  3. Michael Meyer

    I smiled when I read about using VOG as ringtone on the phone. Good to hear I’m not the only one with that idea ?. My iPhones ringtone for the past few years have been Radio Netherlands church bells. On YouTube, several shortwave interval signals are available in good quality.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.