Round The Regions – Scottish.

SCOTTISH

Scottish Television has been the ITV company for central Scotland since August 1957, only Granada have held their franchise for longer of all the regional companies. Their first ident in the monochrome era featured a lion that span round and formed part of the Scottish symbol.

About a year or so after the introduction of colour television, a new symbol was introduced, which featured a tartan-style pattern forming into the STV symbol, and this was used for about 15 years. Also during this time an onscreen clock was regularly used which prominently featured the symbol. stv5

In August 1985 STV brought in a new look and became one of the first ITV regions to have a computer-generated ident. The idea was that it was a somewhat abstract version of a thistle, made out of various cubes and spheres that form together. With the pinks and blues used on a grey background, it does look very mid-80s, and it would became known to viewers as “Bertie Bassett”. They also reverted to using the full Scottish Television name, and there were a few special variations made including one for the 30th anniversary in 1987. stv1

There isn’t a huge amount of Scottish continuity clips online but the ones that I have seen of their presentation have been rather enjoyable and interesting, especially from the 80s. In the mid-80s Scottish did use in-vision continuity with various announcers, including Steve Hamilton who would become better known nationally as the voiceover on Wheel Of Fortune for the whole of its 13-year run on ITV. By the late-80s though in-vision was only used after the launch of Scottish’s night time service in 1988 before being phased out altogether. stv2

Scottish weren’t that interested in taking the first ITV corporate look, and preferred to establish the thistle symbol. In January 1989 a new look was introduced, meaning that Scottish were already on to their second computer-generated ident. Also, Scottish didn’t produce a huge amount of programming for the network, but some of their most memorable shows include CITV’s Fun House, the game show Win, Lose Or Draw, and dramas such as Taggart and Take The High Roadstv4

Scottish decided to keep the second thistle symbol throughout the whole of the 90s, although it was modified on a few occasions as the years went by, and there were also some nice variations created for Christmas and Hogmanay. Scottish didn’t use the second corporate ITV look, keeping the thistle on screen. stv3

In February 2000 Scottish’s new blue square look was introduced in-line with Grampian, and this was the look that would be used for the next six years. I must admit that I’ve never been a huge fan of lifestyle idents but several of them were introduced to help create a new image. I haven’t seen many clips of Scottish’s news coverage but I do know that their main programme was Scotland Todaystv6

In May 2006 Scottish decided to have another relaunch, again returning to the STV name, and Grampian also took this look meaning that their name left the screen. Although regional presentation has long gone from ITV in England and Wales, it still survives in Scotland, with the STV name still being used meaning that there is still a local feel to programming remaining north of the border.

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