May 31, 1975: —‘ll Fix It debuts on BBC1

Jim'll_Fix_It-1975—‘ll Fix It was a long-running British television show, broadcast by the BBC between May 1975 and June 1994. It encouraged children to write in to have their wishes granted.

Among the well known fix-its:

In 1976 Muhammad Ali was on a world tour to promote his book, The Greatest. Landing in London, catching the BBC by surprise, and with no time to bring the thousands of hopeful letter writers to a meeting with the legend, the TV company nipped next door “borrowing” three schoolboy boxers from the school (Christopher Wren). Vince, Andly and Nigel were whisked off to meet Ali.

TV-UK-05-31-1975

A group of Cub Scouts from the 2nd Sutton St Mary’s troop, wrote to the programme asking to have a meal in an unusual place. The show opted to send them, complete with packed lunch, to ride the Revolution rollercoaster at Blackpool Pleasure Beach — the result, thanks to the force of gravity and momentum, being lots of little faces full of food and drink.

The Fourth Doctor, Tom Baker, appeared in the second episode, where he tore off and handed away the frayed ends of his scarf to girls visiting the studio. Ten years later, a young Doctor Who fan, Gareth Jenkins, was able to take part in a short adventure titled A Fix with Sontarans with Colin Baker and Janet Fielding.

Veteran actor Peter Cushing wrote to the show in 1986 to ask if a variety of rose could be named after his late wife; the ‘Helen Cushing Rose’ was the result.

In the 1980s a young girl wrote to ask if she could “accidentally” drop and smash a seemingly valuable vase on an edition of Antiques Roadshow. This was broadcast as part of a regular edition of Antiques Roadshow (as well as in the —‘ll Fix It episode), with many of the crowd at the Roadshow looking on, horrified, until the antiques expert explained the ruse.

In the 1980s a young boy called Dom Lawson, who now works for Kerrang! and Metal Hammer magazines, got his wish to be Iron Maiden‘s tech for the day and meet the band. The incident was described in Iron Maiden’s A Matter of Life and Death tour book, where Dom Lawson speaks about Iron Maiden and his history on the band.

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