Once upon an Autumn day in 1989, when dinosaurs still roamed the earth, I joined the BBC as a Studio Manager at BBC Broadcasting House in London.
As trainees, we were frequently allocated to GLTS – the Gram Library Transfer Suite, though Suite is rather a grand description!
A tiny cell (note bars on windows) at traffic level, tucked away at the back of the gram library, we would transfer old, bizarre, rare & often irreplaceable 78’s and LP’s onto reel to reel tape, making them as clear & clean as possible. All without the aid of computers, auto-heal, or anything resembling today’s audio editing software.
We then stuck labels on the box, using a decaying roller with a little well of stagnant green water, for adhesive purposes.
The saving grace of this imprisonment, was the walk between buildings through a secret tunnel, that positively echoed with a tangible sense of history.
Plus, if you were lucky, colleagues would pop in to poke fun at you & perhaps bring tea & biscuits.
There was also the challenge of flicking a large collection of elastic bands at the window & seeing if you could hook them over the window handle.
Oh & the thrill when, on rare occasions, the phone rang! Gosh – you need my services urgently?! Heavens, someone is rushing a terribly important disc to me right now? Yes of course, I shall speak to you down the line immediately, & play out said disc, so you can incorporate it into your programme in whatever distant BBC studio you’re occupying.
I can still recall the dusty scent of mold, old records, rubber bands & decaying Studio Managers……
A little piece of history that is no more.