Fragment of the first television outside broadcast cable


Fragment of the BBC's first outside broadcast television cable, encased in resin, used in the broadcast of the coronation of King George VI, May 1937.

The original London "ring" installed for King George VI's coronation in May 1937. This was the first cable capable of passing video signals over a significant distance. Often referred to as "Harry Lauder" cable because of the "bandy-leg" appearance of the two central conductors. The fledgling BBC television service was determined to televise as much of the coronation as possible. Permission could not be obtained to put television cameras into Westminster Abbey, so it was decided to televise the scene from Hyde Park Corner. However, the major problem was how to get the signals all the way from there to the TV transmitter at Alexandra Palace. This special cable was designed, measuring about an inch (2.5 cm) in diameter, containing a pair of copper conductors surrounded by a copper screen with the whole lot covered in a protective lead sheath. This small sample is believed to be the only surviving example of this, the world's first television outside broadcast cable.


Object Number:
The BBC Collection

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