BBC 2 Station Identification Caption

1974-1978 in London
British Broadcasting Corporation

BBC 2 station identification caption or 'tuning device'. This mechanical device turns stacked layers in alternating directions to form the 2 design used as the animated onscreen graphic ident c.1974-1978.

BBC 2 launched on 20 April 1964. The first onscreen identification for the channel featured black and white criss-crossing lines to form two bands. The top band held the 2 and the bottom the BBC logo. This mechanical device picks up the motif again, replacing a rotating cube with 2s on the faces introduced with the launch of colour in 1967. This graphic in turn was retired in 1979 with the introduction of the first electronically generated symbol, this time two orange lines and a double line 2 symbol used until 1986.

The retired device was mounted with a presentation panel that reads 'Aubrey Singer / Controller BBC 2 / 1974-1978’. The caption generator was used during the same period that Aubrey Singer was Controller of the channel and was gifted to him after he moved to Managing Director of BBC Radio.

Born in Bradford, Singer was a respected executive who was responsible for bringing important programmes to the channel, including Ascent of Man (1974) and I, Claudius (1976), meeting the intention at launch for BBC 2 to offer cultural programming in contrast to the more mainstream BBC 1.


Object Number:
metal (unknown), plastic (unidentified) and wood (unidentified)
station identification
Aubrey Singer