BBC World Service Television Europe

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BBC World Service ident

This cable and satellite channel was launched in 1987 as BBC TV Europe, serving most of western continental Europe, including the islands in the Mediterranean sea, such as Malta.

The station transmitted via the IntelSat satellite, broadcasting on frequency 601 27.5º west, at 10,995 and 11,155 gigahertz. The station broadcast a mixture of delayed programming originally shown on BBC1 and BBC2.

(There was also a BBC World Service radio network; it was on this that the radio serial Slipback was heard in certain parts of the world.)

From 11 March 1991, BBC TV Europe changed its identity to BBC World Service Television.

From November 1991 it expanded its coverage to parts of Asia, which received different programming from that seen in Europe; for example, although the station was available in India in 1993 and 1994, the repeats of Doctor Who were not shown.

On 26 January 1995, the channel split into BBC World (for news) and BBC Prime (for entertainment) -- see our dedicated page to that re-branded channel.


BBC World Service listing for 4 April 1993, with "Dr Who" (at 5.55pm) (this is Revelation of the Daleks BBC 2 repeat), from Times of Malta
Same 4 April 1993 listing from a Spanish newspaper, albeit with some of the listings times printed incorrectly! - "Dr Who (Colin Baker)" at the incorrect time of 6.20pm

The Doctor Who repeats that aired on BBC2 in 1992, 1993 and 1994 were delay broadcast a few days later on the satellite channel:

For instance, in April 1993, each episode of the BBC2 repeat of Revelation of the Daleks played two days later on BBC World Service, as demonstrated by these two April 1993 billings from Maltese and Spanish newspapers, which lists the episodes simply as "Dr Who" and "Dr Who (Colin Baker)"

Some key dates:

  • January 1992 to December 1993: The run of Friday repeats of Doctor Who on BBC2 are delay-broadcast on Sundays, times differ slightly, but usually around 6:15-6:45pm.
  • January 1994 to March 1994: The run of Sunday repeats of Doctor Who on BBC2 are delay-broadcast on Mondays, usually around 5:35-6:00pm.

BBC World Service intro plus start of Genesis of the Daleks ep2 (January 1993)

Generic BBC World Service clips and idents