So tonight, BBC TV Centre at White City is closing its doors for the last time and bowing out of broadcasting. After fifty-three years of making televisual history, the ming-mongs who call themselves the powers-that-be somehow decided to relocate to Salford in a money-saving exercise. I will never understand this strategy because no-one wants to go to Salford. Three hours from the capital by train, how many celebrities will turn up for an interview? They’ll head to the ITV Studios (the old LWT studios on the South Bank) instead for a chat.

But what do I know? I’m just another Norman No-Nothing, ain’t I?

I have many memories of Television Centre, as I’ve had quite a few interviews there in the past. I remember one, where they actually offered me the job, but I’d have to take a pay cut of £6k, to which I politely withdrew my application during the interview.

The corridors were like a rabbit warren and it’s decor and overall feel was that of a long-gone era and it was hard not to be think back to Blue Peter or Swap Shop or whatever programme had ventured out into those self-same corridors. They had a familiarity about them.

Then there was the time I attended a taping of Top of the Pops on 13 October 1988 with The Missus (but she was still just The Girlfriend back then and hadn’t earnt her promotion). On that show was such delights as PP Arnold and the memory of nearly being knocked out by a camera dolly as I was hypnotised by Sabrina’s heaving bosom.

Ahhh, the memories. The band T’Pau did their thing and their performance was underlined by Carol Decker, obviously reacting to Sabrina being on the show, asking the crowd “Who wants to see my tits?” to which the crowd replied: “No-one”. The story appeared in The Sun the next day and it was that moment I knew that the tabloid press only printed the truth…

So farewell, BBC TV Centre and I predict that the rat’s nest at Salford will never come close to your achievements or your history. And I’ll leave the piece with my favourite photo of Charlie Drake in the atrium of the BBC studios, creating a striking image.

Charlie Drake at the BBC

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