FANS of broadcasting history are being urged to head along to a jam-packed programme of free events in Glasgow this week.

The National Library of Scotland Festival of Broadcasting is being held from Tuesday until Saturday at Kelvin Hall and will celebrate 100 years of television and radio in Scotland looking at how technology has evolved, iconic programmes and Gaidhlig and Scots on air.

The library's broadcaster-in-residence Alistair Heather said National readers will find a variety of talks and presentations of interest including an event on pirate radio in Scotland and a conversation about sports broadcasting with Eilidh Barbour, Jane Lewis and Ray Bradshaw.

He said: “National readers have a critical eye when it comes to broadcasting, as do most Scots.

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“From the protests outside the BBC during the independence referendum, to the ongoing stooshie around STV showing England football matches when Scotland are playing, broadcasting is seldom uncontroversial.

“The stories we are exploring this week at the Festival of Broadcasting in NLS Kelvin Hall in Glasgow dive into all that controversy and way more.

“Get yourself along to Kelvin Hall, across from Kelvingrove Gallery and Museum.”

On Tuesday an event called The Radical Potential of Community Television from 1pm to 2pm will look at Scotland’s first experiment in this field in 1976 which has been almost forgotten.

Dr Emily Munro from the National Library will describe the emergence of community television in the 1970s and surrounding debates, focussing on the story behind the ‘Women in Focus’ programmes made for Vale TV by the Workers’ Educational Association.

BBC Scotland archivists Andy Gailey and Pauline McHugh will then be introducing a series of clips from the BBC’s Rewind project from 3pm to 4.45pm. This was established last year to mark 100 years of the corporation and allows public access to thousands of previously unavailable clips from the 1940s to the present day.

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On Wednesday from 2pm to 3pm, Do It Herself will be celebrating women and the Scottish small screen using examples from the extensive Grampian and Scottish Television archives. Curators Ann Cameron, Liam Paterson and Caireen Stuart will lead a discussion after the screening. 

There will then be a panel discussion from 5pm to 6pm focussing on women in radio where broadcasters Shereen Nanjiani, Pauline McLean and Nicola Meighan will speak about their experiences on air.

On Thursday Radio Rebels will look at pirate and alternative radio in Scotland with sound curator Charlie McCann. The event from 2pm to 3pm will start with an illustrated lecture and panel discussion with invited guests and then the debate will then open to discuss the future of Scottish radio broadcasting.

Other highlights throughout the week include Broadcast Conversations: Gaidhlig and Scots On Air hosted by Heather on Thursday from 5pm to 6pm – featuring conversations with Hugh Dan MacLennan, Lana Pheutan and Mary Ann Kennedy – and Broadcast Conversations: 100 Years of Scottish Sport on Friday evening from 5pm to 6pm.

Heather said National readers may be interested in an event on Saturday in particular.

He said: “Saturday’s a big one for National readers; from 2pm to 3pm is our broadcast conversation about news.

“We have two big-hitters: Colin Mackay of STV, fresh from the SNP leadership debate, and Laura Maxwell from Good Morning Scotland.

“I can’t wait to speak to these two about broadcasting the news in an era of covid, culture wars and ongoing pressure for an indyref. I’m hosting that one, and I’ll try and leave plenty time at the end for questions.”

For more information about the festival here.