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Today was launched on 30 July 1968 when ITV switched from their ATV/Rediffusion contracts to the new Thames Television/LWT model.
Thames produced the daily live entertainment and information programme to reflect “what is going on in London”. The original host was Eamonn Andrews, with Bill Grundy taking over in 1976.
Grundy (and British television audiences) would never forget 1 December 1976 – the day he attempted to interview the Sex Pistols live to air.
Affronted by their aggressive swagger and the fact that they’d just received a £30,000 advance from a record company, Grundy was not a sympathetic host.
The air turned blue as Johnny Rotten and his pals effed and blinded while Bill goaded them to go further and further . . .
The Thames studio switchboard was flooded with protest calls, some also claiming that Grundy was drunk. He was carpeted and suspended for two weeks for provoking the obscenities.
When approached by reporters the next day for comment, Grundy told them to fuck off, and his photo later appeared under the headline in the Daily Mirror, “The Filth and the Fury”.
Thames Television issued an apology, Grundy was suspended for two weeks, and the Today programme was scrapped five months later.
Eamonn Andrews (1968)
Bill Grundy (1976)
Allan Hargreaves (1977)