Sunday, 3 February 2013

Tell me something, whatever happened to holiday programmes on the TV?

I don’t mean holiday horror shows – I see Angela Rippon’s got a new vehicle starting this week; I saw a trailer for it complete with a cockroach – shan’t be watching that then.

I mean the proper, old fashioned, BBC Holiday or ITV’s Wish You Were Here...? type shows with vacations of an aspirational nature.

We all know it’s a bit grim out there at the minute – I didn’t even realize a triple dip recession was possible – so why can’t we have something cheerful on the tellybox to brighten our dull February nights?

I loved the holiday shows of the 70s and 80s, even later I guess.  Dear old Judith Chalmers with her skin the colour of mahogany and the texture of a leather handbag, reclining on a sun-lounger in Southern Spain and showing us that we too could age prematurely given too much sun.

It wasn’t all unattainable holidays either, they had a fair mix of UK holiday parks and campsites, to contrast with the USA theme parks and faraway beaches.

I think my all-time favourite though was The Travel Show which was on BBC2.  Simon Calder presented it, with Fi Glover and somebody else whose name escapes me.  It was a more ‘serious’ show, I think it included the weather, and also had a late availability bit at the end which my family would avidly watch and exclaim ‘Oooh that’s cheap, we could afford that!’ before the end title credits rolled.

It amuses me now that whenever there’s a travel-related story on BBC they wheel out Simon Calder for his comments.  There he’ll be, at silly-o’clock in the morning on Breakfast talking about the travel story du jour.  This is such a regular occurrence that if my husband and I hear that there’s been a holiday company failure or a merger, for example, we’ll look at each other and say ‘time for Simon Calder then’.  Whilst I appreciate he’s perhaps the font of all knowledge travel-wise, aren’t there any other travel journalists who could make the occasional comment and leave poor Simon to have a lie-in?!

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