Sunday February 5th 1989 saw a revolution in television viewing habits in the United Kingdom with the launch of the Sky Television Network direct-to-home service via the Astra 1A satellite
The line-up consisted of four channels - Sky Channel, Sky News, Sky Movies and a joint venture sports channel, Eurosport. Sky also promised Sky Arts and The Disney Channel to begin later in that year in '89, but it never happened.
Pre Launch - 1988
On June 8th 1988 Rupert Murdoch, Chieft Executive of News International, announced his intention to expand the company's interests in satellite tv under the group name Sky Television. Until this time Sky's satellite tv involvement was represented by Sky Channel, a 6 year old family entertainment channel broadcasting to cable TV systems across Europe. 1988 RSL research highlighted the success of this channel, which acheived a 13% share of all UK cable viewing, out performing both BBC2 and Channel 4.
The clips below show how the media reported the news that day...
Here's a copy of the first press release from Sky Television back in 1988. (click on images below to read the pages)
Sky's main channel idents below...