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TITLE
Fred MacAulay at the BBC (2 of 4)
EXTERNAL ID
GB232_MFR_FREDMACAULAY_12
PERIOD
1980s
CREATOR
Fred MacAulay
SOURCE
Moray Firth Radio
ASSET ID
1630
KEYWORDS
Outer Hebrides
broadcasting
audio

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Fred MacAulay was born in Sollas, North Uist, in 1925. Educated at Inverness Academy and Edinburgh University, he went on to become Senior Gaelic Producer of BBC Scotland in 1964, and Manager of BBC Highland in 1979. An active campaigner for the continuation of the Gaelic language, he was one of the most distinguished Gaels of his generation and made a lasting contribution to Gaelic culture. He died in Inverness in 2003, aged 78. In this audio extract, originally recorded for 'Moray Firth People' in 1983, Fred talks to Sam Marshall about his work at the BBC.

Interviewer: What other difficulties did you face, Fred, because things weren't as technological as they are now, perhaps?

Well, it was getting easier. You see, when I came in we were still cutting disk, and you had three disks for a 15 minute talk, if you recorded it, and the SM, as he was called, the Studio Manager, had to do speech change in - just at the tail of, of the first disk going onto number two, getting the two absolutely in unison, and then doing a cross [pot?] fade. And they did this without batting an eyelid; except the odd one who had what was known as a fifty-cycle ripple. In other words, if he'd had too much to drink the night before, it was rather more difficult. But -

Interviewer: Was contacting people hard?

Oh, that, that was quite fun because, well the Gaels, as you know, were not known for their urgency anyway, and, you know, it was all done by letter in those days; the number of telephones were very, very few, surprisingly few. I've got a - the first book of telephone numbers at home and there's lots of room in it but the last one is quite incredible, you know, there just isn't. And, of course, once you hit the Macs it, it was almost impossible. We - in the Gaelic Department of the BBC - we filed the Macs under their, the second element; MacAulay was under 'A', MacBryde under 'B', and MacDonald under 'D', and so it went on; it was the only way you could deal with this. And even then you found that MacLeods, MacLennans and MacLeans, for example, filled more than the allotted space in any telephone book

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Fred MacAulay at the BBC (2 of 4)

1980s

Outer Hebrides; broadcasting; audio

Moray Firth Radio

MFR: Fred MacAulay

Fred MacAulay was born in Sollas, North Uist, in 1925. Educated at Inverness Academy and Edinburgh University, he went on to become Senior Gaelic Producer of BBC Scotland in 1964, and Manager of BBC Highland in 1979. An active campaigner for the continuation of the Gaelic language, he was one of the most distinguished Gaels of his generation and made a lasting contribution to Gaelic culture. He died in Inverness in 2003, aged 78. In this audio extract, originally recorded for 'Moray Firth People' in 1983, Fred talks to Sam Marshall about his work at the BBC.<br /> <br /> Interviewer: What other difficulties did you face, Fred, because things weren't as technological as they are now, perhaps?<br /> <br /> Well, it was getting easier. You see, when I came in we were still cutting disk, and you had three disks for a 15 minute talk, if you recorded it, and the SM, as he was called, the Studio Manager, had to do speech change in - just at the tail of, of the first disk going onto number two, getting the two absolutely in unison, and then doing a cross [pot?] fade. And they did this without batting an eyelid; except the odd one who had what was known as a fifty-cycle ripple. In other words, if he'd had too much to drink the night before, it was rather more difficult. But - <br /> <br /> Interviewer: Was contacting people hard?<br /> <br /> Oh, that, that was quite fun because, well the Gaels, as you know, were not known for their urgency anyway, and, you know, it was all done by letter in those days; the number of telephones were very, very few, surprisingly few. I've got a - the first book of telephone numbers at home and there's lots of room in it but the last one is quite incredible, you know, there just isn't. And, of course, once you hit the Macs it, it was almost impossible. We - in the Gaelic Department of the BBC - we filed the Macs under their, the second element; MacAulay was under 'A', MacBryde under 'B', and MacDonald under 'D', and so it went on; it was the only way you could deal with this. And even then you found that MacLeods, MacLennans and MacLeans, for example, filled more than the allotted space in any telephone book