Last BBC Home Service Closedown

Sep 11, 2014, 10:13 PM
This is delicious. The last words on the station which got listeners through thick and thin. The end of the BBC Home Service as 29th September 1967 drew to a close; ready for the start of Radio 4. David Dunhill was on late continuity duty, and he'd clearly given more than a passing thought to what he might say as he drew the curtains on this powerful station. It's beautifully done, with British under-statement. 

There were those who suggested that 'Radio 4' was a name which ill-suited the legacy of the fine service, and, at the time, it must have sounded a pretty weak solution. Amazing how time changes the meaning imbued into a brand name. Few would disagree that the Home Service's calm, reassuring and trustworthy DNA is still firmly part of its successor.

David Dunhill, who died in 2005, was a fine man. Son of a composer and brother of the chap who'd founded the familiar Dunhill tobacco firm, he'd worked across the Light Programme, the Third Programme and the Home Service as a staff announcer. In later life, he was often called upon as a voice coach; and I treasure a typed report he compiled of my performance, having spent some time with me. What a gentleman.