BBC seeks family to go back to the future

From the Teasmade to the Trimphone, documentary film company Wall to Wall, in conjunction with the BBC and the Open University, is seeking a family to relive the domestic technological revolution of the 1970s, ‘80s and ‘90s.

Wall to Wall (makers of Edwardian Country House, Who Do You Think You Are and New Tricks) want to take one family on a fast-forward, living-history journey through the formative decades of today’s multi-function gadgets as part of a new television series for BBC Four.

Be it the Atari games console or the Sony Walkman, this was the technology that had a lasting societal impact on family life.

The parents may well experience nostalgic flashbacks, while the children will likely experience bewilderment, finding themselves in a world sans FaceBook, mobile phones or Sky+. There will be no internet. Telephones will have dials. Music will be on vinyl.  Photographs will be projected from 35mm slide film.

Gradually, as the family moves through the years, the technology will evolve and morph into something recognisably more modern; it’s a chance to see which family member is the most technologically savvy.  Microwave ovens will enter the kitchen, games consoles will enter the den and home computers will increase in power and complexity.

Fortunately, an IT support team will be on hand throughout to help the family with any technological quandries as they grapple with historical teething problems mercifully long-since forgotten by today's generation.

The series will chart the technological revolution of the past 40 years and assess the impact these changes have had on an everyday British family. By the end of the experiment, the family will have experienced almost 40 years of technological change.

If you are a home-owning family with at least two children between the ages of eight and eighteen, and you have an interest in how modern technology has transformed the family home, contact either Michael Fraser on 020 7241 9349 or Laura Jackson on 020 7241 9308 or email or

The deadline for registering your interest is Friday 28th November 2008.

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