“Today Is Saturday, Watch and Smile!” - Birmingham locals share their favourite Tiswas memories

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Birmingham locals take a nostalgic look back on the 1970s TV show, Tiswas

Tiswas, the iconic children’s TV show that was filmed in Birmingham near Broad Street, has left an indelible mark on the hearts of locals.

The show, known for its Phantom Flan Flinger, was a Saturday morning staple for many in the 1970s.

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Here are some of the best memories shared by BirminghamWorld readers, who were lucky enough to be part of this iconic children’s TV show, and shared their memories in response to our story which you can still read here: Remembering Tiswas. Here’s a selection of those fond memories:

Fiona Tedds recalls her unforgettable experience as part of the Tiswas audience. “My sister and I were in the audience once,” she says, “and we got to slime the cage. Brilliant fun—totally bonkers!” The iconic “cage” segment, where participants were doused in gooey green slime, embodies the show’s comedy spirit.

Phantom Flan Flinger in action with Tiswas host Chris TarrantPhantom Flan Flinger in action with Tiswas host Chris Tarrant
Phantom Flan Flinger in action with Tiswas host Chris Tarrant

Marie O’Reilly Hunter proudly shares, “I was on Tiswas—I won a competition!” Her excitement is palpable, and she longs to relive those moments. “I would love to be able to watch it now,” she adds.

Tiswas competitions were a gateway to adventure, and winning one was like capturing lightning in a bottle.

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The Impact of Tiswas

For Peter Flemmich and many others, Tiswas was more than just a TV show—it was a magical start to Saturday mornings. “My favourite show,” he reminisces. “Saturday morning was the best.”

Behind bars, Tiswas-styleBehind bars, Tiswas-style
Behind bars, Tiswas-style

Indeed, Tiswas became a weekly ritual for countless families, setting the tone for a day filled with laughter and surprises.

Its slapstick humour, celebrity guests, and unpredictable antics made it irresistible for young and old viewers alike.

Memories and Nostalgia

Joanna Dunnington mourns the loss of many Tiswas recordings. “Seems such a shame,” she reflects. “Most of the recordings have been lost. Would love to watch this again.”

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Robert Fletcher unravels a fascinating fact, not known to many: “Wasn’t the Phantom Flan Flinger Chris Tarrant’s own old man? But he never knew that.”

Helen Cooper said: “I was on Tiswas! I think I was about 3. I remember crouching under the desk, waiting to be pulled up by the " ears". I sat on Chris Tarrant's lap.”

Julie Spooner said: “The best kids programme.” Susan steadman added: “I was on an episode when Bucs Fizz was on.”

Penny Baddams said: “Loved it watched it every week won the comp got an Elton John lp and £2 of rachams vouchers.”

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The Phantom Flan Flinger, an iconic character, remains etched in Birmingham’s memory.

These shared memories paint a vivid picture of the joy and excitement that Tiswas brought to its viewers.

Arthur Etchingham sums up the idea of many when he says, “Great and funny times and sometimes absurd but funny as anything.”

It’s definitely clear that Tiswas, was a cherished part of many people’s childhoods.

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