Power of print to the fore as Radio Times celebrates centenary

The special cover design was created by graphic artist Peter Horridge
The special cover design was created by graphic artist Peter Horridge

Radio Times is celebrating its centenary with a bumper issue, four front covers, and additional merch to mark the occasion.

The title is published by Immediate Media and is believed to be the UK’s most profitable magazine.

Radio Times has a weekly print circulation of 431,080 of which 261,330 are subscriber copies.

The centenary issue features four covers with the different masthead styles used since it was first published on 28 September 1923: the original 1923 design; the post-war style that ran between 1946 and 1960; its longest running masthead, which graced the front page from 1972 to 1994; and the current logo, introduced in 2004.

The cover design was created by graphic artist Peter Horridge, whose work includes calligraphy, lettering and type design, and illustration. He also designed the emblem for the Coronation of King Charles.

The centenary issue is 164pp, upsized from the usual average issue size of 148pp.

Pre-media and printing are handled by Walstead Group, with repro at Rhapsody and printing at Walstead Bicester.

The special issue includes a metallic gold plus varnish, with the cover produced on 115gsm woodfree gloss supplied by Denmaur, with text pages printed on 48gsm lightweight coated from UPM.

Centenary merchandise includes an Emma Bridgewater mug

The title lays claims to being the world’s first listings magazine and initially carried listings for six radio stations. Today, that has become 149 channels encompassing 86 TV channels and 63 radio stations.

Joint editors Tom Loxley and Shem Law said: “Since its launch Radio Times has been at the heart of the national conversation, covering the momentous historical events, from Royal weddings, funerals, Coronations and births, the outbreak of war and declaration of peace, Moon landings, Olympics - and the best TV and radio from the last 100 years.

“We’ve overseen the development of the radio age, the birth of television and colour television, through to the current broadcasting revolution and an ever-increasing choice of content, service providers and ways to consume. And as Radio Times turns 100, it remains even more relevant than ever, with more choice there’s never been a great need for expert guidance for our audience on what’s the best content and how you can get it. Here’s to the next 100 years!” 

Special merchandise to mark the occasion has also been commissioned, including a poster of the centenary cover, archive poster prints, a red tasselled fabric magazine cover featuring all the mastheads, and a collaboration with ceramicist Emma Bridgewater for a special centenary design mug.

Radio Times has also named its 100 most memorable radio and TV programmes of the last 100 years and is asking the public to nominate their own favourites.

The centenary issue is on sale now.