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Early TV in the UK


Alan Blumlein Alan Blumlein radar
The first regular TV broadcasting in the world originated in Britain in 1936 and employed the 405 line system developed by Alan Blumlein's team at EMI - which went on to develop a TV-like radar system called H2S.Conspiracy theorists think the UK government encouraged the work on TV mainly because it secretly helped pre-war stealth work on radar


Alan Blumlein radar
Alan Blumlein also developed a stereo sound film system very similar to the Dolby system of the 1970s
Francis Thomson - the 'biographer' of Alan Blumlein who did not produce a biography - here with the Blumlein family at the blue plaque unveilng in Ealing

An early post-war BBC TV Outside Broadcast
In 1967 the UK pioneered the used of 625 line PAL colour, invented in Germany by Walter Bruch of Telefunken
The BBC made this experimental video recorder called Vera in the 1950s
The BBC then bought one of the first Ampex VTRs
While the BBC and IBA set the UK standard, France (and the Soviet Union) adoped Secam. East Germany used Secam to stop its citizens watching West Berlin colour TV

The PAL system (Peace At Last) solved the colour problems experienced with North America's NTSC sytem (Never Twice the Same Colour)


In the pre-digital era, the BBC made the quartz delay lines that the PAL system needed

In the early 1990s Nokia was still in the TV business, with this 'Olympic' set
The UK lead the world into mass adoption of Digital TV through an ordinary aerial, using the European DVB system



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