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British Industrial History

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British Relay Wireless and Television

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August 1949.

Providers of sound and television relay services, of Giltspur House, London EC1

1931 The principal companies of the group started operating as a unit

Post WWII Philips Electrical Industries acquired further relay companies as going concerns. and became subsidiaries of the principal companies.

1949 British Relay Wireless Ltd. & Associated Companies of Aldwych House, Aldwych, London, W.C.2.

1953 Public company incorporated[1]; acquired from Philips Electrical Industries the share capital of the principal companies in BRW Group, and Link Sound and Vision Services from Murphy Radio and Pye. Approx. 1000 employees. Offered a 4th channel in addition to the 3 sound channels based on the BBC's broadcasts.

1955 Murphy Radio had started production of television sets for the relay services.

1958 Acquired 2 existing relay services and further expansion of areas served. Rental branches were opened in areas not served by the relay services.

By 1961 there were more than 500,000 users of wired television services in the UK (c.4 percent of the number of television licence holders); British Relay and Rediffusion were the 2 main companies involved[2]

1962 Demonstration of a new system suitable for subscription services[3]

1962 Murphy Radio owned 11% of British Relay Wireless and Television when Rank acquired Murphy[4]

1963 Government allowed experiment with Pay-TV[5]

1963 Rank Organisation sold its holding in British Relay Wireless and Television, which it had acquired with Murphy, to International Publishing Corporation[6].

1966 Drop in retail business led to fall in overall profits[7]

1967 Introduced colour relay[8].

1968 1.1 million sets received relay television in the UK[9]

1972 Lloyds and Scottish acquired the shareholdings of Associated Television and Reed International[10]

1974 Lloyds and Scottish acquired the shares it did not already own[11]


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. The Times, Jul 20, 1953
  2. The Times, Nov 20, 1961
  3. The Times, Jun 21, 1962
  4. The Times 12 April 1962
  5. The Times, Nov 26, 1963
  6. The Times 18 September 1963
  7. The Times, Jul 23, 1966
  8. The Times, Aug 31, 1967
  9. The Times, Nov 15, 1969
  10. The Times, Aug 23, 1974
  11. The Times, Dec 31, 1974