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Inside Wimbledon…

BBC sounds music Radio podcasts hello and welcome to a rather unusual Media show today because we're at Wimbledon I'm currently standing on the roof of the broadcast centre on my left is number one court with it's brand new retractable roof on my right is centre court with its walls festooned with Boston ivy.

There's a course is one of sports most prestigious competitions.

It's also the world's largest annual broadcast event.

Mega starter over the course of two weeks in July more than a billion people will watch some of the 675 matches that will be played here and iconic green grass around the world takes an army of engineers and producers and a network of underground tunnels control rooms and commentary boxes and over the next half an hour.

That's where we going for 321 a warm welcome to Day 2 of the championships in the stunning shot or call 14.

Will you join me on the first Tuesday of Wimbledon which means that there are a lot of matches.

Just getting underway across the course.

It's just gone 11 in the morning.

It's the bottom half of the first round.

Draw and it's the job of Paul Davies head of broadcast and production at the all England club to make sure all of them are televised live for now.

Just described where we are what we can see the broadcast centre here at the all England club, and we we we developed this space about 2 years ago now.

It is very much like Mission Control as you can see him with very proud of what we created but effectively here were acting as the Host broadcaster, so delivering 18 outside broadcast separately coming into mission Control quality controllers we call it and all these pictures of being beamed around the world to you know different times and so here at 11 in the morning, but in Australia at 20 so we try and schedule Simpson big Australian matches on for that particular market we got the Japanese house on one of the courts doing a unilateral we got the norwegians from Eurosport who looking forward to take aspirin later on so it organised and invision position for them on ct12, so there's there's a different story for every match.

It's going.

Around the world at any one time and this bank of screens, how many screens are there? And what are they showing as well? We got a bad a total of 120 screens hear what we can do is integrating with very keen on this is to embellish the coverage that the domestic broadcaster doing and all different countries with the beauty cameras, so we have 20 beauty cameras across the ground cross the 41 acres and we're very proud of this your Avon you.

Why can which is a cross on the golf course looking into the club which is 380 m long offering these beautiful pictures you can see them swing by there on that that camera there which was a challenge to get through the border put these 33m pylons with sewing to the Aesthetics and the beauty of the grounds, but they allowed us to put them up and they just offering these magnificent shots to the beauty comes will offer you anything from an aerial shot of centre number one court to Upper basket of petunias absolutely I think think Augusta if you like people always compare Wimbledon Augusta at The Masters exactly so it weird.

Find me the same thing bring the beauty of the grounds in the smell and the feel and the colour is picked up on one of your cameras and the Duchess of Cambridge who's who is here sitting in the royal Box whisperer Leah on oversee these things are kept fairly quiet until last minute.

It's an unofficial visit today.

So the Duchess is actually on ct14 as you can see at the moment and I know she's then going to wonder down to arana practice area just to get a real flavour before going to the Royal box and and watching from there, but I think she does does enjoy watching Johanna konta as well.

So you know she might go across the court one as well is about to start her match and the Duchess of Cambridge has arrived here and she is in the royal Box itself.

Is it down to the club to the chairman of the club inviting people or do you sometimes they actually let's get a mixture of people there because it'll look really good on TV while the box is very much the domain of the chairman.

Of course and we get the list in the mornings.

So we have to pass them on to the commentator.

So they can pick up shots and talk about talk bad individuals knowledgeably some of the more famous than others so we've come down the corridor to where all the automated coverage is happening.

So this is set up with Fletcher who are our company who provide these incredible cameras based on tracer technologies, so what that means is there's there's no camera personnel on the courts that the cameras are automated and they actually trace the players that the cameras are given intelligence to recognise certain characteristics of the players sometimes certain colours on their outfit orbital white, there's not a lot of colour, but it could be an emblem logo could be a headband alexandrova against siniakova glad you said that you haven't got any man cameras on that these are all entirely automated cameras absolutely we don't put commentary on all of these matches, but if we do get a request like we did.

This morning from Estonia to get coverage of their player.

It's about festival capturing the match itself, which we doing with these cameras putting graphics on as you can see as well and then we distributing the pictures through satellite to Estonia in this case and that means that all of our broadcast partners.

They will paying very decent rights fees they guaranteed to see their player at the Championships this is the national programme now.

We're going to take away with Wimbledon for a running commentary on the Old English championship by colonel, breath.

What's today's high tech world is very different from the early days of broadcasting from Wimbledon Charles Runcie is a former BBC Sport editor and he studied the pioneers who got the tournament on at one of his inimitable Thanksgiving movement reaches when broadcasting started in the late 20s sport was obviously one of the things that the BBC was going to try and cover and so the BBC rainbow to go along to Wimbledon

How to cover your event could we put a commentary box on centre court so they rigged up this little garden shed in the corner of Centre Court cables lashed up from the general Post Office between Wimbledon and the local exchange and then the local exchange all the way back to Broadcasting House all very simple all very rudimentary.

That's really how it happened for the first few years.

He had a ball by running out.

You should have stopped buying it.

It's better.

It's gone back now, so no recordings of those early days of radio commentary but they made a special program in the early 30s looking back to recreate the sound of the commentary of those very very early tennis matches and it sounds rather weird now but in a way.

It's rather charming to listen to Arnold inspec hand-roasted reaches it and was one of those perfect backhand drive with his easily passes cottages 1937 television came along the BBC

He wants to cover 122 sporting events, but because it wasn't in the studio.

They had to invent outside broadcast units is the 8th yourself and share in the excitement of those were actually present curiously the radio Times didn't actually mention the commentaries been done on television that said the experiment of televising play on the Centre Court at Wimbledon by means of the radio link will be continued this week transmissions will take place every day during the afternoon programmes or after 16 and another great tradition was started, but then when they interrupted the tennis between the cameras round to view Queen Mary entering the royal Box station at Alexandra Palace a bit reactionary but actually it's not the case and the association of BBC has led to a lawful.

Lot of broadcasting Innovations first we start colour launching and so the 60s colour television was about to happen and was a bit of an arms race going on.

I'm on several countries as who was going to be the first country to introduce colour television the controller BBC2 David Attenborough decided.

He wanted to get colour television beat the Germans beat the Dutch BT Italian Tyrol developing their own colour television service the colour service if we did it in Wimbledon on fortnite and so we actually started in Wimbledon fortnight and out of I think for colour cameras would was Alby happened in Wimbledon we produce enough to say we have started colour and the Germans were absolutely livid 3.7 time and so the very first broadcast of colour television in Britain were from Wimbledon

The BBC recorded the Impressions of people who are watching television in colour for the first time it was such a shock to the system have to be next to a television showroom lived in the window and there was colour television and we would just completely dumbfounded Will saying look the grass the grass is green.

It really is green.

It's unbelievable and we missed our bus was just so desperate to see a bit more of the stuff around the world work and they all have their own screens watching multiple matches going on I can see tigers and tiger there and that is the exact item and the girl British sunny here as well Rob Moore

Rights of them Rob just let's walk down to your desk here and so you are a number number 99 we keep going and we can put here for 2 weeks.

Don't see much sunlight getting an early leave late, so you've got your terminal hear you've got your laptop.

You've got your screen.

I think this stage will be down the afternoon you doing stuff online and then later about 5 your budgie on the paper deadline newspapers and that's when you starts with a really bashing through copy and as we saw on the first day with coco girl winning about 8:30 9 at night it can be quite for netting good evening ladies and gentlemen Roger Federer as usual you could raise your hands and taking this questions first in Tennessee access compare sports is fantastic.

You can speak to figure out for 20 minutes for Djokovic and they really do the passport great publicity I think by big so accessible.

because I very much aware that accept pace interviews don't do multiple languages Roger Federer speaking English that he will do it in Germany or doing some French so she can finish the match after an hour for example and I can do an hour and a half to hours of Media

will come down into the bowels of centrecoat and the Gang ways where the fans will come to make their way up to their seats above us and between gangway at 101 and 102 is probably the most privileged seat in the house, so let's go now underneath many many wires and threw a little green Door

if you look at the left, there is the girls for centre court.

And we are so close, and this is where the players walk out and let's go up here now.

This is a metal staircase.

It's quite steep and my legs are quite short but we do not open this door who should we find that the BBC's tennis correspondent Russell Fuller hello Ellie and Gigi salmon, who's presenting for BBC Radio 5 live at these championships welcome to the tentacle Country Box so if you always feels like coming home because I've been covering more than championships quite a few years now.

Just described the view that we've got here us if he's pretty unique in support this view because we are so close to the action quite often when you go to any sporting event particularly tennis events.

You will be in position quite high up in the stand with a fantastic view often behind the servers on here though with that much closer.

Slightly side on and when the players are wondering around at the back of the court the hats reaching for the towel you can read.

The signs on their faces you'd have to have very long arms if there wasn't a double glazed pane of glass between you and the players to touch them, but they're almost within touching distance it is quite cramped space if you stand up too quickly you're going to knock your head at the top you gonna make a loud noise.

We have a range of monitors, so we can keep an eye on another course we got the monitor with the stats and front of us, that's what all the other courts and maybe your specific Mac computer to look up a few things there's five or six headsets are the scattered along the bench it is quite in Stark contrast to the view we have through the window.

It is better for white people than tall people I think because we have the width but we don't have the height gcm10s can move so quickly, how do you develop a rhythm? How do you develop a way of describing the ball which can be flying across the court in all corners of the

To radio audience I get lost in a bubble.

I just disappear once they say the matches started.

I'm with the person or the two people alongside me and I try and follow everything people have different styles for me.

I just trying to shot by shot and throw in some random bits and pieces and just try and paint the picture of the people that cannot see it, so she will turn around and take another bowl from above like the back of a quick look up at Serena Williams and a couple of ounces of the ball a couple more and she is ready Williams foot to fit side to side steps up step back stretches into the forehead ball lands in for him down the line from Georgie little bit inside the court from Georgie goes back across the street from William football jokes on and it is due.

I would never script anything but I think that in advance or perhaps even during the set had a change of ends perhaps where you have 30 seconds to compose your thoughts.

You are just reminding yourself what the main storylines are and I remember with that married triumph of a Milos raonic in 20s.

Stephen the final look like he was very likely to win in straight sets so I thought right this is gonna fall to me and I was aware that this was a pretty historic moment in British tennis.

Have I got this wrong? I was going to be haunted by this when I heard it back from the archives in 2230 years time very comfortable you do think what is the important thing? I thought for me it was the fact that he had had back surgery since the last one that I did not won Grand Slam and he'd come back and he done it and I hope that that was brought across somehow in Coventry at stunning.

I'm Annabel Croft I'm commentating at Wimbledon

Just a classic back and this one so rare in the women's tour there's a big difference between radio and TV commentary little bit more strict.

You really can't talk over the umpires for sometimes you have to let really important moments breathe.

And that the atmosphere of the crowd all the reaction of the players just kind of sink into the audience a little bit for hammer.

I can always remember one of my first comment trees at Wimbledon was with that the very well known and I famous John Barrett and I'm in pain taking his cans off and saying to me about don't just tell us why it was a good back and you've got to give much more detail about why it was a good back and it just say it's a good back and why was it a good back and and I learnt a lot more from him than anybody else actually just keep them honest but beforehand is his big shot in the modern day commentary.

I think sometimes people can be sometimes a little bit guilty of talking too much.


Well, when I'm on centre court with the commentators.

I always feel like I have the best view in the house, but I know in a couple of guys who possibly might disagree.

We are down at eye-level.

We can see the blades of the grass individually and let me introduce you to some of the photographers covering the tournament from what is known as the East hit this is Toby Melville and Hannah McKay from reuters at Toby is it is it a Risky Business sitting so close to the court because those tennis balls can fly and quite rapidly can do all over hit by tennis ball is far less.

I can't feel of being hit by cricket ball so hazards of the trade.

I think the biggest dangerous here is when was the reign break and it's the ground staff running to get the covers across your sitting on what looks like an uncomfortable Ben she got some padded seat backs, but but the bench itself.

You know lowering you into the Earth looks looks quite uncomfortable and put me what a city it.

You don't know how long you going to say today because I'm as much if I've sent much can take hours.

Literally, I've bought some gardening knead cushions and take them together so I carry that around with me to sit on which helps with the wooden benches a little bit yesterday.

I sat on the floor for a wild.

It's just good to sort of change it around who are the players that you particularly think a good photograph good because I quite like the photograph in the women.

What's the secret Toby to set two taking a great Wimbledon photo.

What's the most memorable photo? You've ever taken most of the time you hoping you don't miss the moment.

So it's a bit like putting a finger in the dam.


He just here constantly thinking where's the whole going to pay from I must have missed that picture because you start to notice how players react and you see where the coaches on if they're reacting to the coaches more being here for Andy Murray winning his first Wimbledon that was more about trying to get a slightly looser frame.

To show the crowds reaction and Andy dropping to the floor and some players you start to know when they win the match or win the final how They're gonna prehistoric Lee falls on his back to quite that picture makes from an elevated spot which you can also shoot from a wooden and any competitive Hannah the competitiveness when you're sat in the Ventures and the trenches, it's not shopping albertsstuff moments you text people for potentially 10-12 hours a day so all very friendly with each other but I think we like it when I pictures get used over this.

When are the global interest in Wimbledon means broadcasters and sponsors are prepared to pay huge sums to be associated with it and Mick Desmond is commercial and media director of the all England club and Mick I'm sure you'll probably won't put an exact figure on it, but roughly how much do you raise each year from selling the media rights to Wimbledon

We raise a lot as a private members club.

We don't disclose our figures but as you can imagine the broadcasting revenues by far our biggest income and in many ways there.

They're very important partners, because they are Windows to the world the frost is not just about the money here.

We want to ensure that as many people around the world can see the beauty and the story of Wimbledon the UK Mail via Christian point where RGB we can get more money selling rights to other broadcasters for the BBC is part of our fabric in a great storyteller.

What's the biggest growth area for you at the moment in the history pie with different that we play on grass near the Royal box is obsessed by royalty I think so how to make that's a very attractive that allows women to transcend support, how much do the needs of companies in sponsors shaped the way that Wimbledon is covered in the way the Wimbledon his put together Football Club sponsors.

I'm having a 15.

I don't think we'll have many more than that.


We said no to many many sponsors you want to come in who send me one of branches you want have lots of badgers around the place cos that's not what we are.

I think the partners are we will see when was the hero Brand and I don't have a clear Flossy of less is more if you're watching on TV you gonna look quite hard to spot the logos.


I mean our partners have different things are Rolexes we have all the clocks around the server over 200 blocks around the cypher if they have the school boards in in in that sense but also a brand like Rolex I have an orca Hawkeye execution so when that call is made on a global Europa for Global TV that Hawkeye capabilities is Syria brought with you alongside Rolex so in a very subtle Wimbledon way, we bring those partnerships for life and you mentioned earlier on that quite possibly the BBC doesn't pay the full market rate if you like what you could get Elsewhere and you look at.

Companies like Amazon for example he been snapping up the sun the other events that the WTA the women's tour and so on from the more traditional broadcasters, so you think this changing market means that one day the BBC will no longer be right holders at Wimbledon no, I don't think I think you look at the school at the BBC when I watch ITV for many many years and listen to me to commentate who wrote of both the scale of the BBC NI TV and both are both as broadcasters still dominate the audience in the UK I know for the for a factor here whilst the BBC in minutes terms may well.

Have a less absentia sporting racing terms the dominant.

Yeah, I'm we see that for us.

We want as many people in the UK to access our coverage of women as they possibly can.

Willy the pressroom I've just bumped into John Barrett Diana BBC TV commentators going back many many years and also the former tennis correspondent of BBC Radio Richard Evans have a lovely to see you both, how many years do you think you've clocked up between your covering Wimbledon I can honestly say I have encountered, but I can tell you that I've been at every day of every Wimbledon except one since 1950s and Michael Wilson graduated so we had to go watching what we just meet outside the main pressure in because we're getting people's where I cannot believe that to such distinguished gentleman's he probably.

When was the first being thrown out of places that you have the green and purple ribbon you have the badge? You don't have to hang around in the pressroom.

Do you really know what sort of place? I love coming back tomorrow for the big thing is they changed here is the number of people in the media mean you got the whole broadcast building which wasn't there when we started and you know we arrived with a bit of paper and and and a memory really that's what we had to come and take with Woodman so it's changed and people who are not listening to both of you on the radio now on the TV what will think that you're still doing it and who are listening thinking.

I'm suddenly taken back to my childhood watching on TV or listening on the radio is this is that something that people say to your lot still or they still think you're doing it.

In the park, I underlined or one of the half mile walk around Wimbledon Park as part of our necessary exercise regime Antonia white former champion absolutely somebody stop me at the cafe.

Will we have a little coffee and it was so yes, it does happen.

Must be really rather concerned because he's had all those chances to break the 10th game of the previous set when he have the set points on the microserver.

Just now two more and each time for today man who knows his business at the name one of the nicest compliments.

I think I've ever received Kevin hand is the BBC Middlesex commentator, Man cricket fan and he invited me up into the Oval food and one of the commentators.

I've never seen before.

I said I think about two sentences and he should have a voice of summer.

I thought that was that was lovely.

Thank you.

Look on just found the butterfly we can't is now attending very carefully to the butterfly.

He's got it on the end of his record is picking up very skillfully and instead of doing something terrible to it is walk very gently to the back of the court and is now trying to flick it off.

He has inflicted on his record through the stock netting here.

Just below us and that is Henri leconte round of applause but I tried to and I'm sure we pick that up before television as well listen to radio.


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