Saturday, 20 January 2018

Radio Review - The Snappiest Thing in Broadcasting

In 1935, a rather beautiful collection of 'Silvered Photos of Broadcasting Stars' was issued by D. C. Thomson  & Co. Ltd. The famous Scottish publishing house offered readers of 'Radio Review' a unique opportunity to collect 36 self-adhesive gummed silver cards which could be affixed to a twelve page album.

Each Wednesday radio fans could snap up their copy of 'Radio Review', which was a supplement to 'Topical Times' - a hugely popular magazine during the Inter-War years. From its inception in 1919, 'Topical Times' regularly offered readers free gifts like trade cards and booklets, which must have made it a very popular choice. Within its cheap newspaper-style pages, 'Topical Times' was crammed with sporting stories, illustrations and crime capers. The magazine was wound-up by D.C. Thomson in 1940 as part of the nation's paper saving campaign, though the title itself was still used into the 1970s, especially on hardbound Football Annuals.

The high production quality of the 8 x 6 cms silvered photo cards isn't quite matched by the flimsy orange-tanned pages of the album itself, but this artefact offers up a wonderful opportunity to spot the big radio stars of their day.

Check the faces and the names - here are the voices that were so well-known to radio listeners of the 1930s. Eighty years on, perhaps rather less so. But it begs the question - which of our current radio personalities will be remembered some eight decades on...

The back of the Lew Stone card - which contained a more in-depth pen picture of the star than the caption printed in the Album

Back cover of the Album