The Care of Your Car (lost early BBC motoring show; 1947)

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Radio Times listing of Episode 1.

Status: Lost

The Care of Your Car was a five-part BBC Television Service program broadcast throughout 1947. An early motoring show, it guided viewers on how to best maintain their cars, by examining each component in turn.


The program was presented by two individuals; Peter Dimmock, best known for presenting Grandstand, Sportsview and BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards;[1] and Keith Rogers, a senior TV production executive for outside broadcasting, who often worked with Dimmock.[2] The duo would present five 20-minute documentaries on how to properly look after cars, with assistance from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.[3]

Episode 1 was broadcast on 26th January, 1947. This episode focused on looking after the car chassis, although the exact details regarding inspections, repairs or any other maintenance that should be done to the chassis was not documented by issue 1224 of Radio Times.[4] Episode 2, broadcast on 30th March, was slightly more descriptive, focusing on maintaining the steering, brakes and tyres of the vehicle, including by ensuring how tyre issues could be minimalised.[5][6] Episodes 3 and 4, broadcast on 27th April and 1st June, provided instructions on engine maintenance. Episode 3 involved an expert from a "leading car manufacturer" discussing how engine efficiency could be maximised, which is vital for ensuring low petrol consumption, reliable starting and overall performance that can be achieved through an optimal engine.[7][8] Episode 4 used a displaced engine to further detail how engine maintenance should be conducted.[9][10]

Finally, Episode 5, broadcast on 4th July, instructed viewers on maintaining a variety of electrical equipment. According to issue 1237 of Radio Times, the episode would ensure viewers had the knowledge needed to inspect and maintain a car's electrical equipment, and that such inspections should be done in the summer so that they would be in tip-top condition for autumn and winter.[11][12] After that, no further episodes of the show were documented by Radio Times, suggesting the cancellation of the show after five parts.


Like most early BBC television programs, The Care of Your Car was broadcast live. Back in the 1940s, direct recordings were near-impossible; video tape recordings were not possible, and would not be perfected until the late 1950s. While cine camera recording, involving mounting a camera in front of a television screen, was indeed possible post-World War 2,[13] very few programs received such recordings. Hence, unless someone recorded the episodes as they were broadcast, all episodes of The Care of Your Car are now permanently missing. While no photos of the program have resurfaced, respective Radio Times issues provide confirmation of the existence of the five episodes.


See Also

Early BBC Television

Early BBC Sports Television

External Link