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Holiday (TV series)

Genre Travel
Presented by Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen
Cliff Michelmore
Jill Dando
Country of origin United Kingdom
Running time 29 minutes
Original channel BBC One
Original release 1969 (1969) – 2007 (2007)

Holiday is a long-running UK television programme on BBC One, and was the oldest travel review show on UK television. It was aired on the channel from 1969 until 2007.[1]


  • Overview 1
  • Presenters 2
  • Theme tunes 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


The programme began in 1969 as Holiday 69, and until the 1990s the year was included in the title in this way. The first presenter was Cliff Michelmore who remained with the series until 1986. In 1974 its popularity led to ITV launching a rival show, Wish You Were Here...?.

Each week, the programme consisted of several reports in which one of the presenters visited a holiday resort and reviewed the attractions of the region. Despite the programme's obvious attraction as escapism, over the years it was criticised for featuring destinations that the majority of viewers would be unable to afford.

The programme spawned several short-lived offshoot programmes, including Summer Holiday; Holiday: Fasten Your Seatbelt (1996–98, in which presenters tried out holiday-related jobs); Holiday: You Call the Shots - in which viewers advised the presenters which sites to visit in a particular destination prior to filming; and Holiday on a Shoestring (1999).

It was announced by the BBC in November 2006, that after a record 37 years on air, Holiday would end at the end the series that was running at the time of the announcement in March 2007.


Many presenters came and went over the history of the programme, the most notable being Cliff Michelmore, Ginny Buckley, Peter Whelpton, Joan Bakewell, Anne Gregg, Frank Bough, John Carter, Desmond Lynam, Eamonn Holmes, Anneka Rice, Jill Dando, Rizwana Lateef and Craig Doyle.[2][3]

In addition, the teams of "reporters" who provided regular reviews from holiday destinations have included Sarah Kennedy, Bill Buckley, Kieran Prendiville, Fyfe Robertson, Kathy Tayler, Monty Don, Rowland Rivron, John Cole and Carol Smillie. The final presenter was Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen.

Theme tunes

The original theme tune for the series was Love's The Castle.

Subsequent theme tunes in the mid-70s included Hugo Montenegro's arrangement of Lalo Schifrin's theme to the 1968 movie The Fox and Jean Michel Jarre's Équinoxe (Part One).

Gordon Giltrap's Heartsong was used as a theme tune from 1978 until the end of the 1985 series, when it was replaced with The Holiday Suite written by Simon May. This proved unpopular, and was replaced the following year by a further Giltrap composition.

In 1988, Paul Hardcastle composed new music called The Voyager. This theme was used throughout the 1990s and 2000s until the programme came to an end after 37 years in 2007.


  1. ^ West, Dave (27 November 2006). "BBC axes 'Holiday' after 37 years". Digital Spy. Retrieved 13 June 2013. 
  2. ^ Holiday' programme axed after 37 years"'". Daily Mail. 25 November 2006. Retrieved 13 June 2013. 
  3. ^ Holiday' programme axed after 37 years"'". Standard. 25 November 2006. Retrieved 13 June 2013. 

External links

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