A Bit Piffed Off

Christmas Blooper Tapes.

A concept familiar to most fans of archive television thanks to the online circulation of the compilation tapes put together by BBC engineers in the late 1970s (and to a lesser extent those made by ITV companies in the early 80s which were distributed network-wide).

However an even richer vein of nostalgia can be found in radio blooper reels, recordings of those occasions when the words came out in just the wrong order at just the wrong time. Media lecturer Jonathan Hewat made the collection of these the work of a lifetime and for years presented bank holiday specials on BBC radio and released CD collections in aid of blind charities.

Digging through some old cassettes earlier today I came across a tape I’d made of a compilation of bloopers distributed as the IRN Christmas Tape in 1994. A 15 minute compilation of some of the worst radio moments from the preceding 12 months or so, it was produced for internal consumption only and almost certainly forgotten once everyone had gathered around the newsroom to listen to the feed.

However some moments are worth preserving forever, and so for your entertainment here is a digital restoration of the strictly under no circumstances on pain of being sued not for broadcast or dissemination in any form 1994 IRN Christmas tape. As fun as it is hearing accidental swearing and coughing fits, part of the fun is noting the odd household name feature at the very start of their careers. Indeed although I’ve not yet been able to verify this, I could swear that at about 1:30 there is the voice (and laugh) of a well known national radio drivetime host…

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