Meridian Television

From Audiovisual Identity Database

Credits
Descriptions by
mr3rious and Michael Bass

Editions by
Michael Bass, PAV123, Camenati, Michael Kenchington, RSX-798, Hb1290, Blue2000, CrazySpruiker2001, SubparMario63, Frentoria, and others

Background

Meridian Television was the holder of the ITV franchise in the South East of England. The station was launched on January 1, 1993, replacing TVS. Originally as a consortium between SelecTV, Mills & Allen International and Central, it became part of United News & Media in 1996 when MAI was sold off. It was sold to Granada in July 2000, which later renamed it ITV Meridian in 2002, and since 2004, it became an in-name-only unit of ITV.

1st Logo (January 1, 1993-September 1, 1996)

Logo: An explosion of light occurs and we see blue and yellow-orange colors radiating from the screen. Two rows of crystalline sun rays revolve into place, forming an abstract sun and moon combination with a face (yellow with a purple eye and red-orange rays on the left side, and purple with a yellow eye on the right side). The background is then divided into yellow on the left and blue on the right. "MERIDIAN", in purple, appears at the bottom.

Variants:

  • Occasionally, "STEREO" (for programmes with stereo sound), and "888" (for programmes with subtitles) would be indicated in the top-right corner.
  • During the night hours, the finished product would be shown first, then the main animation was played in reverse, and then played forwards again.
  • Sometimes, the words "Part of the ITV Network" (and with the 1989 ITV logo) appears below the logo.

Technique: The colors radiating, and the forming of the logo. Really nice computer-generated effects here, which continue to hold up over twenty years later.

Music/Sounds: An uplifting fanfare with a four-note horn sounder, which faded out once the logo had fully formed up and the "STEREO/888" text appeared.

Music/Sounds Variants:

  • A more soothing rendition of the fanfare, which had a piano in place of the horn, was sometimes used.
  • Other times it used a reggae version of the theme (mainly at weekends). All three renditions were composed by David Dundas, who previously composed the "ITV Generic" theme.

Availability: Extinct.

  • However, logo enthusiasts have, much like the logos of many other ITV regional franchises, preserved this on websites such as TVArk.

Legacy: Some people might be caught off-guard by the sudden appearances of the rows of crystalline sun rays at the start of the normal variant.

2nd Logo (September 2, 1996-October 4, 1998)

Logo: On a moving pink and purple striped background, we see a purple bubble with yellow dust particles following suit. Both objects form the usual Meridian sun/moon logo with the "MERIDIAN" text below in white.

Variants:

  • "888" would also occasionally appear for shows with subtitles.
  • Sometimes, the 1989 ITV logo would also appear in the top left corner as well.

Technique: The bubble and particles' movements, the formation of the Meridian logo, and the moving striped background.

Music/Sounds: A remix of the Meridian fanfare from before with electronic beeping.

Music/Sounds Variants:

  • A softer rendition of the theme was used for certain, more "serious" programs (such as Meridian News).
  • A different version was used at night-time.

Availability: Same as the second logo.

Legacy: This logo is very peaceful, but some people could get caught off guard by the abruptness.

3rd Logo (October 5, 1998-November 7, 1999)

Logo: On a bright yellow/orange background, we see the Meridian sun/moon logo rotating into place from the left side of the screen. The words "MERIDIAN" fade in at the bottom right.

Variants:

  • "888" (later changed to "Subtitles" beginning in May 1999) would also occasionally appear in the top-right (for shows with subtitles).
  • Starting in May 1999, the 1998 ITV logo also fades in beneath the words "MERIDIAN".

Technique: The Meridian logo revolving into place, and the text appearing. But on this occasion, the symbol's "face" is slightly out of proportion.

Music/Sounds: Same as the third logo.

Availability: Same as the second and third logos.

Legacy: It may be less abrupt than before, but some people may still get caught off guard by the logo rotating into place and the music.

4th Logo (November 8, 1999-October 27, 2002)

See ITV IDs.

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