The 8:15 from Manchester

The 8:15 from Manchester
Genre Children's, entertainment
Presented by Ross King
Charlotte Hindle
Barry Foy (Series 1)
Dianne Oxberry (Series 2)
Theme music composer Inspiral Carpets
Opening theme "Find Out Why" (reworked), Inspiral Carpets
Country of origin United Kingdom
Original language(s) English
No. of seasons 2
No. of episodes 43
Location(s) Manchester, England, UK
Running time 140 minutes
Original network BBC1
Picture format 4:3 (576i SDTV)
Audio format Mono
Original release 21 April 1990 (1990-04-21) – 14 September 1991 (1991-09-14)

The 8:15 from Manchester was a Saturday morning children's magazine show broadcast on BBC1 when Going Live! was in summer recess.

Broadcasting from Manchester, and taking its name from the train departing from Manchester Piccadilly station for London Euston, which was, and still is at 08:15. It was presented by Ross King and Charlotte Hindle. The first edition was broadcast on 21 April 1990. It was produced by Martyn Day. BBC Radio 1 (and now BBC North West) weathergirl Dianne Oxberry joined for the second series, which began on 20 April 1991.

The format was very similar to Going Live!, with imported cartoons (Rude Dog and the Dweebs, The Jetsons and Defenders of the Earth) punctuating items, such as games, music performances and interviews. A regular segment was The Wetter The Better, a game show based in a swimming pool (filmed in Blackpool) and hosted by Ross King.[1] A weekly drama was shown, in which the short episode ended in a dilemma of some sort (e.g. should x tell her sister that y has been cheating on her). Two endings had been filmed and viewers telephoned to vote which ending would be shown.

It also incorporated a repeat run of Rentaghost, though all the pre-1980 episodes were omitted and the end-credits rarely seen. Later, episodes of Grandad, starring Clive Dunn, were also shown.

The theme tune was by Inspiral Carpets: a rewrite of their single "Find Out Why". An early edition had a feature of how the theme was recorded.

The first series came out of studio C in BBC Manchester (on Oxford Road), which was really the scene dock between the main network studio (A), and the regional studio (B). On Thursday evening all the scenery and sets were wheeled out into studio B and everyone moved into the space left to rehearse on Friday mornings. Studio A was eventually used for the second series.

Series guide

In total, there have been 43 editions of The 8:15 from Manchester.

Series Began Ended Number of episodes
Series 1 21 April 1990 15 September 1990 22
Series 2 20 April 1991 14 September 1991 21 *

(* Series 2 was taken off-air for one week on 24 August 1991 due to full coverage of BBC's Grandstand.)


  1. "The Wetter the Better".
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