Andrew Serraillier on working with continuity announcers

The other thing about promotions is that the promotions scriptwriters worked with continuity announcers. There were four in my time. There was Charles Foster, Jim Pope who was the voice of World in Action and I think University Challenge, Graham James, and a guy called Malcolm. All these men – women came later – these men had fantastic voices. They really did. They didn’t have to write any of the words. Anything was done by us, except at the end of the night they often did personal things. If anything went wrong, if presentation broke down for any reason, they’d have one of our scripts standing by. But the great thing about these guys is that whatever you wrote, no matter how rubbish it was, it would always sound fantastic because they had these lovely fruity voices, deep voices, melodic voices, maybe a voice which had a chuckle in it.

The big thing you learned in that department was how to write for different voices. And I can imagine that real writers, scriptwriters, have these voices in their mind and they can get it right. And after you’d been there for months you knew who was going to do different bits and you could write for them. That’s one of the things that I loved.

You can find out more about Granada’s continuity announcers here


1 Comment

  • David Sinck says:

    The “guy called Malcolm” was of course Malcolm Brown, who left to open up TVS on its first day. I wrote to him when he was Melody FM and he wrote a really nice, detailed two page letter on his memories of Granada. Don’t know what he is doing now (acting?) but he remains an early hero of mine.

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