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Blue Peter is named the greatest children's TV show of all time

David Walliams, Konnie Huq, Noel Edmonds and Phillip Schofield were among the panelists who voted in the Radio Times poll

Published: Tuesday, 9th January 2018 at 7:00 am

Blue Peter has been named the best children’s television programme of all time in a Radio Times poll voted for by celebrity experts including David Walliams, Konnie Huq, Noel Edmonds and Phillip Schofield.


Each of the 30 experts (listed below) were asked to name their five favourite children’s TV shows and their votes were added together to give the top 50. Blue Peter was crowned as the greatest ever, followed by Grange Hill in second, Newsround in third, Tiswas in fourth and the Multi-Coloured Swap Shop in fifth.

Blue Peter is the world’s longest-running children’s TV show and is loved across the generations. It made its debut in 1958 and will celebrate its 60th anniversary this October.

The show garnered as many as eight million viewers an episode at its peak and received one thousand letters a day from viewers who were after the coveted Blue Peter badge.

Its most memorable moments over the years include John Noakes dropping his trousers to reveal his bobsleigh bruises (and his wife’s underwear), Noakes clambering up Nelson’s Column wearing nothing for protection but a combat jacket and a pair of flares, Valerie Singleton working her way through the national supply of sticky-back plastic and an incontinent elephant called Lulu.

Mark Frith, editor of Radio Times, said: "British TV produces the best programmes for children in the world – reading our list produces the most wonderful, warm memories"

Out of the top 20 shows, 16 were broadcast in the 1980s – making it the most popular decade for kids’ TV.

The 30 experts who voted in the poll were: Noel Edmonds, Floella Benjamin, Frank Skinner, Russell T Davies, David Walliams, Edwards Barnes, Lenny Henry, Peter Purves, Phillip Schofield, Chuckle Brothers, Biddy Baxter, Dick & Dom, Chris Packham, Sally James, Clive Doig, Steve Backshall, Pat Sharp, Timmy Mallett, Michaela Strachan, Richard Marson, Ayo Akinwolere, Malorie Blackman, Neil Buchanan, Ade Adepitan, Jake Humphrey, Iain Stirling, Justin Johnson, Andi Peters, Janet Ellis, Barney Harwood, Konnie Huq, Joe Goodwin and Ewan Vinnicombe.

Radio Times is celebrating the top 50 children’s TV shows with four different covers, paying tribute to shows from the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s, on sale from Tuesday 9th January.

Radio Times Top 20 children’s programmes of all time:

  1. Blue Peter
  2. Grange Hill
  3. Newsround
  4. Tiswas
  5. Multi-Coloured Swap Shop
  6. Vision On
  7. Live & Kicking
  8. Going Live!
  9. Play School
  10. Crackerjack
  11. Play Away
  12. Pingu
  13. Rentaghost
  14. SM:TV Live
  15. Animal Magic
  16. Byker Grove
  17. Jackanory
  18. The Box of Delights
  19. How
  20. The Borrowers

The top 50 can be found in the latest issue of Radio Times magazine – on sale from Tuesday 9th January in shops and via iTunes

Children's TV shows cover

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