TV-am: 1983

TV-am’s initial launch date was set for June 1983. However, the IBA allowed the station to bring forward its start-date to 1 February 1983 in response to the launch of the BBC service Breakfast Time. TV-am was spearheaded by the ‘Famous Five’ who were not only lined up as presenters on the station, but were also shareholders: Michael Parkinson, David Frost (1983–92), Angela Rippon (1983), Anna Ford (1983) and Robert Kee. Esther Rantzen had originally been one of the station’s ‘star’ line up of presenter/shareholders, but pulled out in 1981 after the birth of her third child.

TV-am’s headquarters and studios were at Breakfast Television Centre, Hawley Crescent, Camden Town, London. Designed by Terry Farrell and converted from a former car showroom, Henlys Rover, the building included a number of large plastic egg-cups along its roofline facing Regent’s Canal; these egg-cups also served as the programme’s closing credits copyright year identifier. Programmes originally ran from 6 am to 9.15 am, with Daybreak, then Good Morning Britain (neither related to the 2010 and 2014 ITV shows of the same name) filling weekday mornings.

With thanks to Transdiffusion for their contributions to this page.

Start-up slides

TV-am Generic Ident

Good Morning Britain titles

First Day

March 1983:


Daybreak was the news programme broadcast before Good Morning Britain. It didn’t last long. Not to be confused with the 2010 ITV breakfast programme.