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The Children's Channel, also known as TCC, was a British-based pan-European children's television channel in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, which was owned by Flextech in London, England, UK. It began broadcasting on the original Eutelsat satellite on 1 September 1984.

History[]

The Children's Channel was launched on the original Eutelsat satellite on 1 September 1984, almost exclusively to cable households owing to the low proliferation of domestic satellite dishes in Europe, the Middle East and Africa at the time. The channel was owned by Starstream (a joint venture of British Telecom, DC Thomson, Thames Television and Thorn EMI) and worked closely with Warner-Amex. The channel was directed by Richard Wolfe, who had previously worked at Warner. "The Children's Channel" was created according to the old Nickelodeon concept (previously owned by Warner-Amex Cable Communications). The office was located in London at 6/7 D'Arblay Street.

On 3 April 1998, the original pan-European operations of The Children's Channel on Eutelsat's Hot Bird both unexpectedly and silently closed after 14 years. Ratings had fallen massively due to competitors Nickelodeon UK, Cartoon Network Europe, Disney Channel UK and Fox Kids UK launching within three years of each other. These launches had reduced TCC's viewer share to 0.2% by its closure. The exodus of teen programmes to Trouble only accelerated its decline. Flextech officially stated that it only wished to focus on the teen market, and there were "so many other channels designed for [TCC's former target audience]". After the closure, Trouble's hours expanded to start at 7.00am. Upon the closure of the pan-regional TCC Europe channel, Cable & Wireless carried the localized TCC Nordic feed for a few months due to the company's anger at the closure of TCC at such short notice. On 5 October 1998, it was taken off the service and its slot was filled by Fox Kids.

History with Barney[]

Around April 11th, 1994, TCC made an agreement with Lyons Group and Australian based company and distributor Southern Star to broadcast the show's 2 seasons (at the time) to expand it's Preschool programming range.[1] It wasn't long until TCC saw that Barney was one of their most popular preschool programs (Along with GMTV, who started broadcasting Barney the same month), as around August 1994, TCC and Alton Towers collaborated to bring Barney to their televised "Summer Crunch" event, performing several sing-alongs. Along with a pre-show party for around 50 V.I.P. guests.[2]

In September 1995, they rebranded and separated all their programming into blocks. This meant that all their preschool programming (including Barney) would now be broadcast on their new "Tiny TCC" block. airing every morning from 6.00am until 9.00am. At the same time, they began airing Season 3 (along with Seasons 1 and 2).

Starting in February 1997, As TCC was silently beginning to wind down it's pan-European operations, they suddenly took off all preschool programming from the channel and moved it over to various channels. Including Nickelodeon UK's Nick Jr. block/channel, and Flextech's other channel "LIVINGtv" (now known as Sky Living). Barney's agreement was given over to LIVINGtv's new block "Tiny Living".[3] and TCC now just focused on pre-teen/teen programming.

External links[]

References[]

  1. [1] The Children's Channel (TCC) (UK) Continuity (August 1994)
  2. [2] TCC promos and adverts shown during Barney and Friends on the 1st and 2nd August 1994
  3. [3] Barney and Friends - Hop to It! (partially incomplete)
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