The BBC is the world’s oldest and largest broadcaster. It is a public service broadcaster, founded in 1922 and funded by the UK government. The BBC has an international reputation for impartiality and accuracy in its news reporting.
Here are ten fun facts about the BBC:
1. The BBC was founded by John Reith, who was appointed its first Director General in 1922.
2. The BBC began life as a radio station, broadcasting from London to ships at sea. Its first broadcast was on 14 November 1922.
3. Television broadcasts started in 1936 with regular programming beginning in 1937 – making the BBC one of the world’s first broadcasters of television programmes!
4. During World War II, the BBC played a vital role in morale-boosting propaganda broadcasts to occupied Europe on behalf of the British government. Winston Churchill famously described it as “the voice of hope” during this time.
5. In 1952, theBBC launched its flagship current affairs programme Panorama – which is still going strong today!
6. In 1963, the iconic children’s TV series Doctor Who premiered on BBC One – it remains one of the longest running sci-fi shows ever made!
7. The popular sitcom Dad’s Army aired on BBC One from 1968 to 1977 and is still regularly repeated today – almost 50 years later!
8. Another hugely popular sitcom, Only Fools and Horses, ran for seven seasons on BBC One between 1981 and 1991 (with sporadic Christmas specials until 2003). It has since been voted Britain’s favourite sitcom of all time!
9. In 1997, Prince Charles caused controversy when he criticised some aspects of modern architecture during an episode of Blue Peter – one of Britain’s best loved children’s TV programmes which has been running since 1958!
10. The successful global franchise that is Top Gear began life as a motoring show airing on BBC Two way back in 1977, though it has undergone many changes (and presenters!) over the years!