A Handful Of Songs, 1973
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It’s Friday and no it’s not Crackerjack, it’s time for our weekly look back at vintage kids TV. Today it’s another ITV pre-school kids lunchtime show: A Handful Of Songs.
This is one of those shows everyone remembers but there are huge gaps in the available information, most notable the transmission dates.
A Handful Of Songs was an idea had by then Senior Producer of Children’s Programmes Muriel Young. She had been working with a musician by the name of Wally Wyton who had released an album of nursery rhymes. This gave her the idea of a presenter singing children’s songs on TV.
At the time Wyton was too busy working with BBC Radio 2’s Folk Club so wasn’t available. Un-deterred Muriel Young pressed ahead with the idea pairing a young singer Kathy Jones with a guitarist Alistair Johns, and so A Handful Of Songs made it’s way to the ITV lunchtime kids slot.
Initially the show aired only in the Granada region of ITV. Alistair Johns left the show and was replaced by Keith Field who partnered Kathy Jones. As the series began broadcasting right across the ITV network Kathy Jones moved on and was replaced by Maria Morgan. This pairing stayed with the show until the end in 1983 although it’s very difficult pin an exact date. It is believed there were 379 editions of the show, but we were unable to find out how many still exist.
If memory serves me correctly this went out on a Friday at 12pm.
Simple format. Two presenters sing songs requested by their viewers usually by way of sending in a painting related to their song choice. These paintings were shown in the background, whilst the song was being sung.
Sadly there are no clips of Kathy Jones available from the show but we thought this might interest readers
Kathy Jones and Alistair Johns
Kathy Jones and Keith Field
Maria Morgan and Keith Field
Created By: Muriel Young
Originally Transmitted (unverified): 1973 – 1983
If you thought this was a handful of cheese wait till you see what we dragged up for next week!