Commonwealth Exchange

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started9th Jul 1951
ended10th Jul 1953
3 school years
duration20 mins
age rangeAge 9-11 & Age 11-13
languageenIn English

Commonwealth Exchange is a BBC schools radio series from the 1950s, covering Miscellany for primary and secondary school pupils.

These special programmes, broadcast at the end of the summer term in 1951, 1952 and 1953, were the result of an arrangement between schools broadcasters in several countries of the British Commonwealth - Britain, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Ceylon and Canada - to provide each other with programmes on the common theme of Something We're Proud Of.

The BBC broadcast the programmes contributed by the other five countries involved in the exchange, and also produced a programme themselves for broadcast in the other countries - but the BBC productions were not broadcast in Britain.

The exchange was established in summer 1951, at the time of the Festival of Britain. After three years of these exchanges of complete programmes it was decided that a better arrangement would be to exchange raw material from which each national broadcaster could compile schools programmes to suit their local audience. In Britain the first output from these new arrangements was a unit called The Commonwealth and Ourselves, broadcast in For the Fourteens in autumn 1953

Sources & references

  • BBC (1952) BBC Annual Report and Accounts 1951-52 p.23
  • BBC (1953) BBC Annual Report and Accounts 1952-53 pp.16-17
  • BBC (1954) BBC Annual Report and Accounts 1953-54 pp.21-22
  • Radio Times listings, 1951-1953


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