Alan Taylor sent us these pictures of the former BBC LO-4 Type 5 scanner being hoisted into the garden of the Lock Keeper’s Cottage at Bow.
He wrote: ‘It was to become the control room for Channel 4’s Big Breakfast. The location was on an island and, as there was no vehicular access at that time (although there is now), the truck had to be lifted over the wall from an adjacent industrial estate.
I was the Head of Sound for Planet 24 at that time and was responsible for getting the audio and comms systems adapted for their purposes, training the sound crews and for mixing the shows. They were especially keen to use me because I had worked on that particular truck quite extensively and knew its innards intimately.
‘When the scanner was being lifted, the crane driver was horrified to discover that the truck weighed substantially more than he had been told (based on the original BBC specification). He lifted it anyway and the RSJ spreader bars did show signs of stress, which was very alarming. Once it was in position, we opened the doors and found that the interior was piled high with camera, audio multi and power cables, which Planet 24 had also bought from the BBC at the same time.’
Note: LO-4 was the first of the Type 5s to enter BBC service, and the first to be retired. You can see it here in the original BBC livery, grey with a green stripe.
Alan Taylor was a sound supervisor with BBC TV OBs and has worked freelance since 1989.