Five black and white TVs still in use in Ely as BBC One in colour hits 50

PUBLISHED: 18:49 18 November 2019 | UPDATED: 18:49 18 November 2019

Five homes in Ely still use a black and white television. Picture: SUBMITTED

Five homes in Ely still use a black and white television. Picture: SUBMITTED

Archant

It may be the 50th anniversary of colour TV - but five households in Ely are still watching programmes on black and white TV sets.

TV Licensing officials revealed that five households in Ely still have black and white licences.

It comes as BBC One celebrated its 50th anniversary of colour TV on November 15.

There were 6,586 black and white TV licences in force at the end of September 2019 - a fall of 575 compared to the same time last year.

In 2000 this figure stood at 212,000.

The figures show that despite the rapid growth of smart TVs, smart phones and tablets to access TV content, a surprising number of households still appear to enjoy the nostalgia of monochrome TV sets.

They remain popular with collectors with vintage and portable TV sets regularly traded online.

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A licence is still needed to watch live TV and stream BBC programmes on iPlayer on a black and white TV or monitor and costs £52.

But if they are used to download BBC programmes on iPlayer or to record any live TV, then a colour TV Licence is needed.

Rachel Roberts, spokesperson for TV Licensing in the East Anglia, said: "When BBC One launched its colour TV service in November 1969, there were only three channels available.

"Fast forward to 2019, and more than half of TV households have in some way an internet connection to their TV and access to hundreds of channels.

"While only accounting for a very small proportion it's interesting to know that some households still like to watch their favourite shows on a black and white telly."

BBC One launched its full colour service on November 15 1969.

The new service was also extended to ITV, bringing them in line with BBC Two, which had been offering colour programmes - including Wimbledon, the Olympic Games and The Eurovision Song Contest - since 1967 under controller, David Attenborough.

Programmes showing in colour on November 15 included Star Trek and Dixon of Dock Green, The Harry Secombe Show and Match of the Day, plus the feature film The Prisoner of Zenda.

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