HC Deb 12 March 1963 vol 673 cc1164-5
25. Mr. Dempsey

asked the Postmaster-General if he will introduce legislation in order to limit the number of times television networks may show the same film.

Mr. Bevins

I sympathise with the intention of the hon. Gentleman's Question and I propose to draw the attention of the broadcasting organisations to the matter.

Mr. Dempsey

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that that reply will be warmly welcomed because, after all, the cost of television to viewers is considerable? When he draws the attention of the television authorities to this matter, will he also give them a list of some of the films from whose repeated showings we have suffered so often and include the famous one, "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon"? That film has been shown so often that the ribbon is now faded. Will he try to protect viewers from this type of thing?

Mr. Bevins

I am told that the I.T.A. repeats about 38 per cent. of feature films, while the B.B.C. does not keep exact statistical information on this; but I understand the percentage is about the same. However, the B.B.C. has shown "She Wore a Yellow Ribbon" four times, and "The African Queen" seems to crop up quite regularly. It is fair to add that many middle-aged people have a nostalgia for these things, although I am not one of them.

Mr. Woodburn

Will the right hon. Gentleman point out to these two bodies that even these films are better than some of the things from the intellectual beatniks on both channels?