Baird slideshow on BBC website

John Logie Baird
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Iain-Baird-27.04.11A NEW audio slideshow about Helensburgh-born TV inventor John Logie Baird can be viewed on the BBC Scotland website.

Entitled ‘Thinking outside the box’ it is the work of a freelance producer, Gill Davies, who is now Glasgow-based but is originally from Helensburgh.

Gill, who has worked with the BBC for 20 years, said: “I interviewed Baird’s grandson, Iain Baird, for the feature which was published on the BBC Scotland website on Wednesday June 22 to coincide with the end of Digital Switchover in Scotland.”

Iain Baird, who is Curator of Television at the National Media Museum in Bradford, can be heard talking about the pioneering work of his grandfather, the first person in the world to demonstrate a working television system.

As he speaks, excellent images of the inventor's work — some supplied by Helensburgh Heritage Trust — can be seen. The web address is

Des Gorra, editor of the Secret Scotland website, commented after viewing the slideshow: "The slide show reminded watchers that Baird's original low-resolution television transmission were actually audio signals, and could only be broadcast after the BBC's normal  audio programmes had ended for the day, so the same transmitters could be used for Baird's television signal.

"Today, with the digital network, there is still competition for broadcast space (bandwidth), and BBC Alba is effectively doing the same thing today on Freeview, as it does not broadcast until the evenings (longer at weekends), when the BBC closes down a number of its Freview radio channels to provide space for BBC Alba when the main radio networks — Radio 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Live, Radio Scotland and World Service — are not available on Freeview between 5pm and 11pm each night, with the addition of afternoon at the weekend.

"I just find it rather ironic that we still have the same bandwidth problem after all these years and our clever modulation systems that have jammed so much more into into the same space, yet it's still not enough."