Johnnie Hamp

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Interview Date(s): 
7 Apr 2009
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Interview notes

Johnnie Hamp Interview    6“ April 2009

Interview starts prior to National Service early 1950s — JH had his own act in Variety — Goes into National Service - On Leaving RAF goes for interview at Granada in Golden Square —

Gets job as assistant manager Granada cinemas - E5 per week Granada cinema chain — The Bernstein brothers

Film scheduling and ’This is where we came in’ — Hitchcock demands changes with screening of Psycho

Duties of assistant manager — life as assistant manager Live entertainment in cinemas — Cine-Variety —

Sidney Bernstein’s managerial style

1954 promoted to assistant head of publicity for Granada Cinemas chain 1955 becomes Head of Publicity

1956 - Arrival of TV franchises and Granada, opens up Quay Street Manchester studios

GTV has London studio in Chelsea Palace theatre

Earliest TV experience — Harry Watt documentary on Soho

Don Arden and Rock and Roll tours provides his intro to performers who will work with him in GTV specials in the 1960s

‘I Hear The Blues’ 1963

Little Richard and The Shirelles — 1965 — peak time broadcast ‘Chelsea at Nine’ —asked to be the producer

‘Spot the Tune' — live transmission Studio procedures — cam set-ups, etc.


Set-ups for ’Wheeltappers & Shunters Club’ Working with Phil Casson director

Moves to Quay Street 1962 — David Plowright ‘All Our Yesterdays’ Movietone News

‘People & Places’ Bill Grundy, Gaye Byrne and Michael Parkinson ‘Scene At Six-Thirty’ — GTV’s footprint from Hull to Liverpool ‘Blues & Gospel train’ 1964 — OB procedures, radio mikes

Set design for Rock and Roll specials - ‘Whole Lotta Shakin Goin On' Creative atmosphere 1960s TV


Started as Messenger boy for Pathe in Wardour street. Career on stage as a mime act before going in to RAF. After RAF became assistant in Granada cinema Kingston Upon Thames. Worked in various cinemas for Granada. Promoted to Granada Golden Square in 1954. First produced Quiz Show "Spot that Tune" in the same year. No editing allowed on Quiz shows then. Became Head of Light Entertainment for Granada TV.