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From EastEnders to The Muppet Show: The Elstree Centre programmes

Broadcasting

From EastEnders to The Muppet Show: The Elstree Centre programmes

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Honey Lane (ATV)

Before Coronation Street was given its own outdoor set ATV’s East End saga Market In Honey Lane (later just Honey Lane) was the first UK serial to be given an open air backlot to add realism to the proceedings. Launched in 1967 Honey Lane was based on a real London street market – which creator Louis Marks’ wife had lived nearby in her youth. The show followed the lives of the residents of the market street as well as the traders who worked on it.

It starred John Bennett of the original Forsyte Saga and Ivor Salter of Crossroads fame. Up until 2022, where EastEnders’ Queen Victoria pub once stood, in the original Albert Square backlot, was the structure of The Duchess of Verona Inn of Honey Lane.

Emergency Ward 10 (ATV)

ITV’s first medical serial launching in 1957. It moved from a theatre in Wood Green to ATV Elstree in 1961 and remained in production until 1967. The storylines concerned the doctors more than the patients and medical procedures were secondary to the love life of the doctors and nurses.

Based at the fictional Oxbridge Hospital it made a television heartthrob of Richard Thorp who played Dr John Rennie, Richard now best known as Alan Turner in Emmerdale. The series also launched two spin off shows which were also produced at Elstree – Calling Oxbridge 2000 and 24 Hour Call.

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