Thursday, October 13, 2005

Queen to Join ITV 50th Celebrations

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh will join a host of ITV celebrities at a reception to mark the channel's 50th anniversary.

A glitzy dinner is taking place at London's Guildhall, which was the location of the channel's first broadcast in September 1955.

Ant and Dec, Chris Tarrant, and stars from Coronation Street, Emmerdale and The Bill are all expected to attend the celebrations.

ITV went on air at 7.15pm on September 22, 1955, with a broadcast for the London region and a Guildhall banquet in honour of its birth.

The network emerged after the 1954 Broadcasting Bill gave birth to the Independent Television Authority and allowed a commercial channel to compete with the BBC.

On that first evening, viewers saw the Halle Orchestra playing Elgar's Cockaigne Suite and part of Oscar Wilde's The Importance Of Being Earnest.

The launch also saw the broadcast of the country's first commercial at 8.12pm, an advert for Gibbs SR toothpaste.


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