Click for larger image The Open University - Mechanical
1971-1981
This is the one! The Open University shield in its original, generic form dominated weekends until 1984. Originally the form-up was mechanical, as seen here, but was computerised around 1982. And that fanfare? It was the first five bars of Divertimento for Three Trumpets and Three Trombones, composed by Leonard Salzedo.

Click for larger image The Open University
1980
Click for larger image A few tv related things probably scared us as a kid. The Yorkshire Television chevron at the start of 3-2-1, the Southern TV identand this, the Open University symbol. This clip leads us into "Social Work, Community Work and Society".

The Open University - CGI
1982
Spot the difference...the animation might look the same, but it is now generated electronically from solid state equipment, part of the computerisation of BBC presentation that rolled out from 1980. If you look closely you might be able to see the circle is larger and closer to the edge of the shield.

Click for larger image The Open University Start-Up
1982
Usually there'd be a two-minute startup before OU transmissions began. Here's a typical example from 1982, complete with clock and announcement for the first programme.
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Click for larger image BBC2 Open University Follows Shortly
1984
Click for larger image Oh goody! Vivaldi for 9 minutes while BBC2 hands over to the OU. This clip doesnt contain 9 minutes of Vivaldi though, just the still for the OU!
 
(The Rock Around The Clock credits you see briefly at the start was from a music marathon broadcast from studio S1 in the basement of Broadcasting House in London, which featured New Order and was simulcast on Radio 3 FM as Radio 1 was still on MW. The Broadcasting House technicians were not happy about recording band sessions, unlike the crew at Maida Vale who were used to doing so, and this caused tempers to fray between them and New Order, causing Bernard Sumner, New Orders lead singer, to introduce their final song, "Temptaion",as "An atmospheric song to get out of an unatmospheric place")


Click for larger image The Open University - BBC2
1984
Click for larger image Left Clip - A trail for "The Greeks Have A Word For It" about the possible demise of Greek village life, and then a word about Radio 4's programme "Rollercoaster", about a poetry writing contest between a poet widely tipped to be the new Poet Lauriet, a lyracistand a computer. Then onto that OU ident with the very author.

Click for larger image The Open University - BBC2
1984
Click for larger image Two clips from 1984 featuring the channel-styled OU ident, which had been introduced that year. The left clip features an Open University interval. OU intervals weren't exactly riveting TV as all you got was the OU shield disappearing and then reappearing at the end of the interval, as seen in the clip, which features the full 80 second link. The right clip is the opening link to a late night transmission. Clearly pre-recorded, a different announcer does the continuity. Its also worth noting that the BBC2 continuity announcer does a standard closedown announcement over the clock before handing over to the OU, a practice which had ended by the time the TWO look came into being in March 1986.

Click for larger image The Open University - BBC1
1984
Click for larger image We present another interval link, this time from BBC1 in the early days of the BBC1-styled OU ident. Announcer David Allan uses part of the time to mention a forthcoming programme before the rest of the interval begins with the disappearing version of the OU shield.

Click for larger image The Open University - BBC1
1985
Left Clip - Another startup for the technical course, "Telecommunication Systems"
 
Right Clip - A closedown from the OU, where the symbol reverses and disappears.


Click for larger image The Open University - BBC2
1986
Click for larger image The OU ident as used on BBC2. Programmes start in 2 minutes, in the mean time, heres some music...

BBC1 Open University
2.2.1991
First clip - The Gulf War means extra news bulletins are being slotted around programmes, and this junction informs viewers of changes. Look out for the stylised OU logo for the COW era.
 
Second clip - Recorded during the final OU weekend of the COW era, this link features OU programme captions (still on slides) and the welcome return of Mark Waddington to the announcer's chair.


Click for larger image Weekend Outlook
1991
Click for larger image A preview of what's coming up on the OU

Click for larger image The Open University
1991
Click for larger image From the 16th February 1991, this is how the new look BBC1 was unveiled... together with a new look Open University for BBC1 & BBC2.

Click for larger image Weekend Opening 1
1993
Click for larger image OU opening on Sunday 19th September 1993.

Click for larger image Weekend Opening 2
1994
Click for larger image OU opening on Saturday 8th January 1994.

The Open University
2000
The final OU ident from 2000. Shown only at weekends, the blue and yellow colours are reminiscent of the classic 1970s symbol. A widescreen version was occasionally seen.

Click for larger image The Open University Promo
2002
Click for larger image No longer is the OU for geeks and strange men with beards. A fresh outlook on the OU, complete with bizarre trail.

Click for larger image The Open University Promo
2003
Click for larger image The OU and the BBC - binging learning to life. As you can see, things have come a long way since the early years of the Open University.

Click for larger image The Open University End Boards
2001 / 2003
Click for larger image Two examples of an animated OU shield just a bit more modern than the rotating shield that symbolised Open University programming until the 1991 BBC TV logos redesign.

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