There's a cool thing that I just discovered last night - The BBC Genome Project, with all the Radio Times listings of BBC radio and television programmes from 1923 onwards! It's really cool, even if it is scanned in with text-recognition software that doesn't always get it right. So, after staying up all night researching and cataloguing all the BBC broadcasts of Thundercats cartoons and cross-referencing it with my own taped-from-the-TV video collection (because, I'm sorry, there are some things that are vastly, top-priority important and you really have to be me to understand it), today I had the idea of seeing how many times the name Pridmore shows up in the history of the BBC. Turns out it's seven.
Really? Seven? From 1923 to 2009, people with my surname can only muster seven mentions in the Radio Times? I know we're not exactly a foremost-in-the-land kind of family, but that's a bit bad, isn't it? One of them's me, from that "Make Me Smart" thing, the others are a fascinating mixed bunch...
Saturday 20 May 1933, 9:15pm, BBC Regional Programme - "The Bottle Imp". A radio adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson's story, with the list of characters including "Pridmore, a young American in Honolulu". This is a bit strange, really, since there isn't a character called Pridmore in the original story. From his position in the 'in order of appearance' list, I assume Pridmore is the originally-unnamed idiot who bought the cursed bottle for two cents (it grants you great powers, but if you die owning it you're damned to Hell for eternity, and it can only be sold at a loss). What made James MacGregor, the radio adaptor, call him Pridmore? Maybe he had an enemy of that name.
Friday 14 June 1940, 8:00pm, For the Forces - "Thirsty Work". An evening of country singing recorded by the BBC Mobile Recording Unit. Singers: Bill Pridmore , Peter Wilson , Thomas Hendrie , Luke Webster , Bill Prodger , Frank Smart and other regulars of The Exeter's Arms, Wakerley, Northamptonshire. Hmm, Uncle Bill would have been 17 then, and in Sheffield, so it's probably not him. June 14th is my brother's birthday, too.
Sunday 15 March 1964, 6:15pm, BBC TV - "Meeting Point". "This is My Story - Faith on the River Kwai". How important is faith in conditions where all else which usually makes life acceptable— comfort, security, even human dignity-have gone? Neil Matheson, Leonard Morrison, Robert Pridmore who in the Second World War worked as prisoners on the ' railway of death' —the Burma-Siam railway-give their own answers in the light of their experiences, in a conversation with William Purcell. I don't know of any relatives on the Pridmore side of the family who were in Burma during the war. I assume Robert's answer was along the lines of "very important", because it was that kind of TV programme.
Friday 20 January 1967, 2:40pm, BBC Home Service - "Brave and Bold", a radio poetry programme with, down at the bottom of the listing, "also poems by Jane Pridmore, Zoe Bailey and Hal Summers". I've come across the name Jane Pridmore in books of poems before, but I don't know anything about her beyond that.
Thursday 20 August 1988, 11:30pm, BBC Radio 4 - "Fresh Air Media", A four-part series of feature-making by non-professional broadcasters. 3: Voices Four pieces with a common interest in the voice. Presenter Geoff Pridmore. Never heard of him.
Sunday 9 August 2009, 7:00am, BBC Radio 2 - "Good Morning Sunday", Aled Jones talks to that John Pridmore who I've come across in Google searches before, who seems to make a comfortable living for himself claiming to be a former gangster who found God.
Quite a motley crew, I must say. We really need to get more Pridmores on the BBC. Family pride is at stake!