Philip Redmond, is an English television producer and screenwriter from Huyton, Lancashire. He passed it, but attended St Kevin's RC School in Northwood, Kirkby, his mother was a cleaner and his father was a bus driver. He trained to become a quantity surveyor, he based his first ideas for Grange Hill on his time at St Kevin's. He is well known for creating several popular television series such as Grange Hill and Hollyoaks. For over twenty years he ran his own independent production company, Mersey Television, before selling off the company in 2005. Redmond created the daytime legal drama, The Courtroom, cancelled after 38 episodes. In 2013 Phil Redmond published his autobiography Mid-Term Report. In 2016 Phil Redmond published his first novel Highbridge, a follow up from a short Ebook called Hightbridge the Beginning, published in 2015. In 1989, Redmond was awarded the post of Honorary Professor of Media Studies at Liverpool John Moores University, where he is encouraging a new, practically-orientated, media studies course.
In November 2010 he was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Chester. He was appointed a CBE in the 2004 Queen's Birthday Honours List for services to drama. Redmond is Chair of National Museums Liverpool and of the UK City of Culture Independent Advisory Panel. In February 2012, Redmond declared an interest in running for the role of Elected Mayor of Liverpool. Phil Redmond on IMDb
Damon and Debbie
Damon and Debbie was a three-part spin-off from the Channel 4 soap opera Brookside first broadcast in November 1987. A Mersey Television production, it was written by Frank Cottrell-Boyce, directed by Bob Carlton, produced by Colin McKeown; the series is credited as the first'soap bubble'. The series followed teen sweethearts Damon Grant and Debbie McGrath as they absconded to York to escape their disapproving parents in Liverpool who objected to the relationship because of the class divide, it ended with the death of Damon, a regular character in Brookside since its launch in 1982. Damon and Debbie was developed in response to several factors, according to Brookside creator Phil Redmond. Firstly, the producers were keen to develop further "high-octane storylines" having seen the audience and media response to 1985's siege storyline, in which nurses Pat and Kate were held hostage in their home, concluding in the latter's murder. Actor Simon O'Brien, who had played Damon Grant since the show's first episode in 1982, said he not only wished to leave the show, but requested that his character be killed off.
Additionally the intention was to celebrate Brookside's fifth anniversary in November 1987, the production team and executives were keen to mark the occasion. The Grant family had featured in major storylines the rape of Sheila Grant (played by Sue Johnston, Damon was used to illustrate the problems of the Thatcher ministry's Youth Training Scheme, which saw Damon, who expected to be employed by a firm for whom he had worked for low wages, but being told that the company were going to replace him with further cheap labour at the end of his service in the scheme. Following both of these storylines, executive producer Phil Redmond suggests, Damon's departure would have to be "something a bit special"; the producers developed the idea of a'soap bubble', a term which Redmond credits to Channel 4 executive David Rose, so that the multi-stranded narrative of Brookside would continue during the standard episodes, with two characters co-existing in a separate production. Damon and Debbie is recognised as the first instance of a UK soap opera expanding its narrative world in such a way.
According to Annie Leask of The Sunday Mirror, the spin-off was a result of the characters' popularity with the viewing public. The character of Debbie McGrath was introduced into Brookside as Damon Grant's girlfriend, her being younger than Damon caused friction between the parents of both characters, alongside a class-divide, a plot-line which saw one critic refer to it as like "Romeo and Juliet in trackies". When their parents objected to them dating, the couple decided to elope from Liverpool to York, an adventure, depicted in Damon and Debbie. Filming took place over six weeks; the scenes in which Debbie attends an open day were filmed on 19 September 1987 at the University of York. The same corridor was used several times for the scenes in which Damon tries to find her, with the furniture rearranged to make it appear different each time; the computer graphic. The three-part series was broadcast late on Wednesday evenings on Channel 4 in November 1987, with an omnibus edition screened over the Christmas period of that year.
Following the broadcast of Damon and Debbie, the storyline returned to Brookside. Police are seen arriving to break the news to Sheila Grant in episode 529, broadcast on 23 November 1987. Debbie returned to Brookside, Damon's funeral was featured in the episode of Brookside broadcast on 1 December. Crosby actor Jonathan Comer, the extra who played the part of Damon's killer, began to receive threatening phone calls and hate mail shortly after the episode was broadcast; the music played over the opening and closing credits was written by Steve Wright, who had written the Brookside theme. Dani Ali performed "Talk to Me", a song written for the show's closing credits, on episodes one and three, with a recording by English singer-songwriter Annabel Lamb accompanying the credits of episode two. Both versions of the song were releases on the Ariola label through BMG. There is no record of the single gaining a chart position; the title was the closing spoken line of dialogue in all three episodes. Damon Grant – Simon O'Brien Debbie McGrath – Gillian Kearney Lettuce – Siobhan Maher Mr McGrath – Nick Maloney Nick – John Basham Barbara/Bridget McGrath – Annie Tyson Lonnie – Neil Caple Tone – Geof Atwell Zoe – Jaye Griffiths Jenny – Michelle Holmes Kirk – Ian Ormsby-Knox Patrick – Lyndam Gregory Apala – Seeta Indrani Sadhir – James Neale-Kennerley Damon and Debbie on IMDb
The Only Way Is Essex
The Only Way Is Essex is a British reality television series based in Brentwood, England. It shows "real people in modified situations, saying unscripted lines but in a structured way." The series is filmed just a few days in advance, is narrated by Denise van Outen. Broadcast on ITV2, the series was moved to ITVBe in October 2014; the first series consisted of 10 episodes and ran for 30 minutes, with a Christmas special following in the year. Due to popularity, the show was renewed for a year's airing. On 22 May 2011, the series won the Audience Award at the 2011 BAFTA Awards. On 13 March 2016, ITVBe aired a one-off documentary hosted by former cast member Mark Wright, discussing the history of the series. On 28 February 2017, with the announcement of the cast for the show's twentieth series, it was confirmed that instead of the usual three series per year, ITVBe would only be airing two series, but with more episodes, it was confirmed that episodes will only air once a week, that running times would be increased from 50 minutes to 60 minutes.
The first series of the show began airing on 10 October 2010 and concluded on 10 November 2010, consisting of 10 episodes. Due to the success of the series, a Christmas special aired the same year on 24 December 2010; this series was centered on the love triangle of Mark Wright, Lauren Goodger, Lucy Mecklenburgh. This was the only series to feature cast members Michael Woods. Mark appeared alongside fellow cast members Amy Childs, James Argent, Nanny Pat and Sam Faiers on Alan Carr: Chatty Man on 21 February 2011 to discuss the first series and confirmed a second series; the second series began airing on 20 March 2011 and concluded on 4 May 2011. Due to the popularity of the first series, the second series consisted of 14 episodes. Before the series aired, the cast filmed a four-minute music video, screened on ITV2; this series saw the departure of Amy Childs off screen and introduced new characters Joey Essex, Gemma Collins, Chloe Sims, Debbie Douglass, Carol Wright and Mick Norcross. The third series began airing on 24 September 2011 and concluded on 9 November 2011, consisting of 14 episodes.
As well as being the first series to feature new cast members Mario Falcone and Georgio Georgiades, Billi Mucklow and Cara Kilbey, this series saw the departures of original cast members Mark Wright, Harry Derbidge, Kirk Norcross and Maria Fowler. A second Christmas special aired on 20 December; the cast of the third series covered the Wham! Single "Last Christmas"; the fourth series began airing on 29 January 2012 and concluded on 29 February 2012, consisting of 10 episodes. On 25 January, the show was nominated for "Most Popular Reality Programme" at the National Television Awards; the series was the last to feature Dino and Georgio Georgiades but included the arrival of new cast members Ricky Rayment, Bobby-Cole Norris, James "Diags" Bennewith, Georgia Dorsett, Tom Kilbey, Little Chris Drake and Charlie King. Mick Norcross returned to the series for the first time without his son Kirk; this was the first series where the opening scenes changed to include silhouettes of the current characters, with the theme tune playing on the background.
The fifth series began airing on 15 April 2012 and yet again ran for 10 episodes concluding on 27 May 2012. The series included just one new cast member, it was the last to include Georgina Dorsett who left after just two series. Shortly after the series, an hour-long special entitled The Only Way Is Marbs, set in the holiday destination of Marbella, aired on 13 June 2012. Tinchy Stryder made a guest appearance in the episode; the sixth series started airing from 22 July 2012 and concluded on 22 August 2012. Lauren Goodger confirmed that this series would be her last and she departed at the end of the series. Former cast member Mark Wright, who last appeared in Series 3, made a cameo in the eighth episode, but did not have a speaking part; the seventh series started airing from 30 September 2012 with all of the cast from the previous series returning apart from Lauren Goodger, original cast member Kirk Norcross returning to the series after departing in Series 3. This made him the first cast member to return to the show.
The series was renewed for two further series in August 2012, set to air sometime in 2013. On 13 November 2012 it was confirmed that three festive specials would air in December including a live episode, a first for the show; the live episode was met with numerous negative reviews, with Digital Spy commenting that it just didn't work and was complete car crash TV with it not making much sense. On 14 December 2012 it was confirmed that former cast member Mark Wright would return for a cameo appearance in the 2012 Christmas special. Original cast member Lydia Bright, Tom Kilbey, Cara Kilbey all left after this series, it was the first to include Danny Walia and Jasmin Walia, who had made a cameo in the first Christmas special of the show; the eighth series started airing from 24 February 2013 and saw the introduction of several new cast members including James Locke, Dan Osborne, Jack Bennewith and Abi Clarke. Twin sisters Amy and Sally Broadbent were confirmed to have joined the cast however after two episodes, Lucy Mecklenburgh announced on Twitter that they had been used by the show to create storylines and had been dropped from the cast.
The series saw the departures of numerous long serving cast members such as Kirk Norcross, Debb
BBC One is the first and principal television channel of the British Broadcasting Corporation in the United Kingdom, Isle of Man and Channel Islands. It was launched on 2 November 1936 as the BBC Television Service, was the world's first regular television service with a high level of image resolution, it was renamed BBC TV in 1960, using this name until the launch of the second BBC channel BBC2 in 1964, whereupon the BBC TV channel became known as BBC1, with the current spelling adopted in 1997. The channel's annual budget for 2012–13 was £1.14 billion. The channel is funded by the television licence fee together with the BBC's other domestic television stations, shows uninterrupted programming without commercial advertising, it is the most watched television channel in the United Kingdom, ahead of its traditional rival for ratings leadership, ITV. As of June 2013 the channel controller for BBC One was Charlotte Moore, who succeeded Danny Cohen as an Acting Controller from May 2013; the BBC began its own regular television programming from the basement of Broadcasting House, London, on 22 August 1932.
The BBC Television Service began regular broadcasts on 2 November 1936 from a converted wing of the Alexandra Palace in London. On 1 September 1939, two days before Britain declared war on Germany, the station was taken off air with little warning, with one of the last programmes to be shown before the suspension of the service being a Mickey Mouse cartoon. BBC Television returned on 7 June 1946 at 15:00. Jasmine Bligh, one of the original announcers, made the first announcement, saying, "Good afternoon everybody. How are you? Do you remember me, Jasmine Bligh?". The Mickey Mouse cartoon of 1939 was repeated twenty minutes later; the BBC held a statutory monopoly on television broadcasting in the United Kingdom until the first Independent Television station began to broadcast on 22 September 1955, when ITV started broadcasting. The competition forced the channel to change its identity and priorities following a large reduction in its audience; the 1962 Pilkington Report on the future of broadcasting noticed this, that ITV lacked any serious programming.
It therefore decided that Britain's third television station should be awarded to the BBC. The station, renamed BBC TV in 1960, became BBC1 when BBC2 was launched on 20 April 1964 transmitting an incompatible 625-line image on UHF; the only way to receive all channels was to use a complex "dual-standard" 405- and 625-line, VHF and UHF, with both a VHF and a UHF aerial. Old 405-line-only sets became obsolete in 1985, when transmission in the standard ended, although standards converters have become available for enthusiasts who collect and restore such TVs. BBC1 was based at the purpose-built BBC Television Centre at White City, London between 1960 and 2013. Television News continued to use Alexandra Palace as its base—by early 1968 it had converted one of its studios to colour—before moving to new purpose-built facilities at Television Centre on 20 September 1969. In the weeks leading up to 15 November 1969, BBC1 unofficially transmitted the occasional programme in its new colour system, to test it.
At midnight on 15 November with ITV and two years after BBC2, BBC1 began 625-line PAL colour programming on UHF with a broadcast of a concert by Petula Clark. Colour transmissions could be received on monochrome 625-line sets until the end of analogue broadcasting. In terms of audience share, the most successful period for BBC1 was under Bryan Cowgill between 1973 and 1977, when the channel achieved an average audience share of 45%; this period is still regarded by many as a golden age of the BBC's output, with the BBC achieving a high standard across its entire range of series, plays, light entertainment and documentaries. On 30 December 1980, the BBC announced their intention to introduce a new breakfast television service to compete with TV-am; the BBC stated it would start broadcasting before TV-am, but made clear their hands were tied until November 1981 when the new licence fee income became available, to help finance extending broadcast hours, with the hope of starting in 1982. On 17 January 1983, the first edition of Breakfast Time was shown on BBC1, becoming the first UK wide breakfast television service and continued to lead in the ratings until 1984.
In 1984, Bill Cotton become managing director of Television at the BBC, set about overhauling BBC1, slated for poor home grown shows, its heavy reliance on US imports, with Dallas and The Thorn Birds being BBC1's highest rated programmes and ratings being over 20% behind ITV. Cotton recruited Michael Grade to become Controller of BBC1, the first time the Corporation had recruited someone outside of the BBC, replacing Alan Hart, criticised for his lack of knowledge in general entertainment, as he was head of BBC Sport prior to 1981; the first major overhaul was to axe the unpopular Sixty Minutes current affairs programme: this was a replacement for the news and magazine show Nationwide. Its replacement was the BBC Six O'Clock News, a straight new programme in a bid to shore up its failing early evening slot, it was believed the BBC were planning to cut short the evening news and move more light entertainment programming in from the 18:20 slot, but this was dismissed. The Miss Great Britain contest was dropped, being described as verging on the too offensive after the January 1985 contest, with Worlds Strongest Man and International Superstar being axed.
BBC1 was relaunched on 18 February 1985 with a new look, new programming including Wogan, EastEnders and a revised schedule to help streamline and maintain viewers thr
CBBC is a British children's television brand owned by the BBC and aimed for children aged from 6 to 15 BBC programming aimed at under six-year-old children is broadcast on the CBeebies channel. CBBC broadcasts from 7 am to 9 pm on CBBC Channel; the CBBC brand was used for the broadcast of children's programmes on BBC One on weekday afternoons and on BBC Two mornings until these strands were phased out in 2012 and 2013 as part of the BBC's "Delivering Quality First" cost-cutting initiative.. CBBC programmes were broadcast in high definition alongside other BBC content on BBC HD at afternoons on weekends, unless the channel was covering other events; this ended when BBC HD closed on 26 March 2013, but CBBC HD launched on 10 December 2013. CBBC programming returned to BBC Two on Saturday mornings in September 2017 when Saturday Mash-Up! launched, however this strand continues to use the regular BBC continuity announcers and not the CBBC presenters. BBC-produced children's programming, in native languages of Scotland and Wales airs on BBC Alba and S4C respectively.
The BBC has broadcast television programmes for children since the 1930s. The first children-specific strand on BBC television was For the Children, first broadcast on what was the single'BBC Television Service' on Saturday 24 April 1937, it lasted for two years before being taken off air when the service closed due to the Second World War in September 1939. Following the war, For the Children recommenced on Sunday 7 July 1946, with a twenty-minute slot every Sunday afternoon and the addition of programmes for pre-school children under the banner For The Very Young, over the years they became an established feature of the early afternoons on the BBC's main channel BBC One. In 1952, the "For the Children" /; the 1964 launch of BBC Two allowed additional room for children's programming with an edition of Play School technically being the first official programme. On 1 October 1980, Watch with Mother was replaced by See-Saw, moved to BBC2 in June 1987, before ending in 1990. Meanwhile, weekday afternoon children's programmes on BBC One were introduced by the off-screen continuity announcer, though specially-designed menus and captions would be used.
On 9 September 1985, this long-standing block of children's programming was rebranded as Children's BBC, for the first time the children's block had dedicated idents and an in-vision presenter. The BBC had broadcast children's programming using BBC1's team of regular duty announcers; the launch presenter for this block, thus the first Children's BBC presenter of the current format, was Phillip Schofield. During the 1990s, Children's BBC began to be referred to informally on-air as'CBBC'; the official billing name of Children's BBC remained in place, until the BBC's network-wide branding refresh of October 1997, when the official on-air branding changed to CBBC.. Further changes to the schedule were rolled out during the 1990s and 2000s, including the introduction in the late 1980s of Sunday morning programmes on BBC Two only during the Open University's winter break and subsequently year-round. In the 1990's, BBC Scotland introduced Children's BBC Scotland with a mixture of repeats and local programming such as Megamag and Up for It!, broadcast in the school holidays on BBC One Scotland and subsequently on BBC Two Scotland.
During this time, BBC Scotland opt out of the national presenters to broadcast their local version of the weekday morning breakfast show presented by Grant Stott and Gail Porter. From 1996 to 1999, CBBC programmes were shown on the channel Nickelodeon, as part of the CBBC on Nick programming block; the launch of digital channel BBC Choice in 1998 saw the channel broadcasting children's programming in a Saturday afternoon slot, subsequently replaced by the daily 6 am to 7 pm service CBBC on Choice, which aired archive pre-school programming and was itself the precursor of the current CBBC Channel and CBeebies services. In 2002, the launch of the CBBC Channel and the CBeebies Channel saw a wide variety of programmes, both new and archive, being shown again on the new channels from 6 am or 7 am until 7 pm. In 2005, the Secretary of State for Culture and Sport, Tessa Jowell, was questioned in the House of Commons as to whether a public service broadcaster should be broadcasting "lavatorial" humour.
Ms Jowell responded that it was the government's job to develop a charter for the BBC. In 2009, a report published by the BBC Trust found that scheduling changes which took place in February 2008, where programming ended at 17:15, had led to a decrease in viewers; this was noticeable for Blue Peter and Newsround, two of CBBC's flagship programmes. The changes were made following the BBC's loss of the rights to soap opera Neighbours, wh
Hollyoaks is a British soap opera, first broadcast on Channel 4 on 23 October 1995. It was devised by Phil Redmond, who had conceived the Channel 4 soap Brookside; the programme is set in the fictional village of a suburb of Chester. The show is filmed at Lime Pictures in Liverpool; when Hollyoaks premiered, it aired just one episode weekly. At its inception, the soap was targeted towards an adolescent and young adult audience, but now has broadened its appeal to all age groups, it has famously covered many taboo subjects seen on mainstream British television. Beginning with a cast of fourteen characters, the serial now has upwards of fifty cast members; the longest-serving cast member is Nick Pickard, who has played Tony Hutchinson since the first episode. The programme has won 35 British Soap Awards, 18 Inside Soap Awards, one TRIC Award and one National Television Award. At the 2014 British Soap Awards, Hollyoaks won Best British Soap for the first time, breaking the 15-year draw between rival soaps EastEnders and Coronation Street.
Hollyoaks is produced by Lime Pictures and is filmed at studios in Childwall, Liverpool. Bryan Kirkwood joined the show as executive producer in 2006, but left three years to become producer of EastEnders. After he left his role in 2009, a number of producers worked on the show, resulting in a number of creative reinventions and changes in direction during this time. Lucy Allan was named as Kirkwood's successor. In 2010, Allan announced she was to step down from the series after only a year, being replaced by Paul Marquess. Speaking of her decision, Allan stated: "I am proud to have been part of the Hollyoaks team. I've had a fantastic time working on this show but am now excited about what the future will hold." On his upcoming role of series producer, Marquess said: "Taking up this position at Lime Pictures feels like I'm going home, as I began my career working with both Carolyn and Tony at Granada and my first major project was Brookside at Mersey Television. I'm a huge soap fan so to be handed the reins of Channel 4's flagship teen drama is not only a huge challenge but a massive honour."
Lime Pictures creative director Tony Wood added: "I'd like to thank Lucy Allan for making such a contribution to Hollyoaks over the years and wish her well for the future. It's exciting to be working with Paul Marquess again. He's one of the best showrunners in the business; this is a brilliant appointment for Hollyoaks." Only one day after being announced as the new producer, Marquess began work on the soap opera. A Channel 4 spokesperson stated: "It's all been a quick turnaround at the top, it was announced in January 2011 that Marquess would leave his role as series producer and would be succeeded by Hollyoaks production team member Gareth Philips. Discussing the news, Philips said: "I have enjoyed working in the script team at Hollyoaks and it will be a huge honour to take the reins of Channel 4's flagship youth drama. I am excited about taking the show further this year with more compelling and brave stories." Emma Smithwick replaced Philips in autumn 2011. In late-September 2012, it was announced that Bryan Kirkwood would be returning to Hollyoaks, replacing Emma Smithwick.
When the show was created in 1995, it featured fourteen characters: the Benson siblings Kurt and Lucy. On 26 February 2007, the programme launched a revamped title sequence with a faster version of the theme tune; this new sequence underwent minor changes caused by characters leaving or joining the programme. The original style of this sequence has changed on many occasions. March 2008 saw an updated "style" to the titles, with a purple background and new character segments, it was announced on 19 June 2010 that new titles with a new theme tune, "slowed right down", would be used in new series producer Paul Marquess' first episode, which aired on 5 July 2010. However, on 2 July, the titles were delayed for one week; the titles were delayed for a second time due to "technical difficulties". On 10 September 2010, Channel 4 confirmed the new Hollyoaks titles and theme music would air from 13 September. However, the titles were different from pictures of filming of the original credits, suggesting a reshoot was the reason for the delay.
Marquess commented: "We're excited about the new titles that the viewers will see on Channel 4 on Monday. They're glossy and Hollyoaks." He apologised for the delay, saying: "We're sorry to the fans who have been waiting to see them, but they've taken a while to perfect. I'm happy with them and I hope that the fans like the new-look show."The new titles that Marquess introduced continued to appear until September 2016, with minor changes made between them. When characters depart the show, they a
Brookside is a British soap opera set in Liverpool, England. The series began on the launch night of Channel 4 on 2 November 1982, ran for 21 years until 4 November 2003. Intended to be called Meadowcroft, the series was produced by Lime Pictures and it was conceived by Phil Redmond who devised Grange Hill and Hollyoaks. Brookside became successful and was Channel 4's highest rated programme for a number of years in the mid-1980s and with audiences in excess of nine million viewers, it is notable for realistic and challenging storylines. From the mid-1990s it began raising more controversial subjects under the guidance of new producers such as Mal Young and Paul Marquess, it is well known for broadcasting the first pre-watershed lesbian kiss on British television in 1994, as well as a powerful domestic abuse storyline resulting in murder. In 1996, the series experienced an extreme backlash from viewers when it featured a hugely controversial storyline of a consensual incestuous sexual relationship between two sibling characters.
Although the series had a long and successful run, by 2000 its viewing figures were in terminal decline and low ratings led to its cancellation in June 2003. The final episode was watched by around two million viewers; the first episode of Brookside was repeated as part of Channel 4 at 25 on 1 October 2007. The episode aired on More4 in a season of celebratory Channel 4 programmes to mark the channel's first quarter-century. Several classic episodes have been available to view on All 4, an online service, since 2009. After years of campaigning by fans led by Lee Brady, a special DVD was released in November 2012, just over 30 years after the series began, titled Brookside Most Memorable Moments, it features episodes from the programme's 21-year history. A British Rail Class 86 electric locomotive No.86402 was named Brookside on 10/8/87 with an associated plaque. It was renumbered 86632 on the 30/9/89 and carried its number until 30/6/99 appearing on trains in Liverpool and the North West. Brookside differed from other soap operas because it was filmed in real, brand-new houses, in a real cul-de-sac, situated off Deysbrook Lane in the North West city of Liverpool.
Built by Broseley Homes, the houses were custom built in an attempt by the producers to add to the show's realism. In early 1982, Mersey Television, with Phil Redmond at the helm, bought thirteen houses altogether, six of which would be seen on-screen as sets; the remaining seven properties housed administration and canteen facilities for the cast and crew. Phil Redmond was enthusiastic about purchasing an entire'close' of houses as a means of achieving the desired realism of Brookside, but in order to maintain total control of his creation. Brookside had a smaller ensemble cast than other soaps focusing on six households; the early cast featured just 16 characters and it would be a full 12 months before the six houses in Brookside Close became occupied. This was intentional, as Redmond wanted to reflect the pace of real life'new-build' estate occupancy. Therefore, introductory episodes concentrated on the development of the anchor Grant family, with Sheila and Bobby who had moved up the social ladder to a big, four-bedroomed house on the'middle-class' Brookside Close from a run-down council estate.
The Grants were the first family to have moved onto the Close and they lived at number 5 and were the focus of earliest advertising campaigns promoting the programme. Only three of the six new-builds were occupied by characters and Episode 1 saw the arrival of the Collins family led by Annabelle Collins, the first actor to be seen in the first episode and Paul Collins. In contrast to the Grants, the Collinses were on their way down the social ladder, downsizing from their lavish home on the upmarket Wirral, to the smaller, more modest, number 8, Brookside Close following Paul's redundancy; the contrast between the families was featured Bobby's left wing and Paul's right wing views. Other characters included Heather and Roger Huntington, two young professionals residing at semi-detached number 9 who took an instant dislike to the Grants. Low class newly-weds Gavin and Petra Taylor moved into number 10 during early episodes, memorably selling stolen cookers from the front lawn, infuriating their new neighbours.
The first episode was watched by 4.2 million viewers but the initial reaction to the serial was far from positive. Critics were quick to point out various technical problems as well as the profanity now being screened before the watershed; as viewing figures plummeted, stabilising at around 1 million, the production team and writers started to iron out Brookside's teething troubles. Soundproof panels were placed on the ceilings of the houses to contain sound and eliminate echoing, the scriptwriters toned down the language and removed a couple of poor performing supporting actors; the show's atmosphere changed with the arrival of new characters such as Alan Partridge who moved into the bungalow in April 1983, while pensioners Harry and Edna Cross, who bought number 7, arrived in November. Their opening storyline involved the mysterious movement of their garden gnomes; these new characters expanded the cast whilst helping to bring humour and balance to the existing cast during 1983. Further cast changes during 1983 saw the arri