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Harlech Television was awarded the contract to take over the ITV region covering South Wales and the West of England in the contract reshuffle of 1967. The existing station Television Wales and the West (TWW), outraged at their treatment by the Independent Television Authority (ITA), dropped out of their franchise early and sold the remaining months of their contract which had been due to expire at the end of July 1968 to Harlech for just under half a million pounds. Their last transmission day was 3rd March 1968 but since Harlech's facilities were not yet ready to take over ITV coverage in the region the ITA set up the interim Independent Television Service for Wales and the West which ran from 4th March to 20th May 1968 after which Harlech properly took over (TWW continued to contribute programmes, presenters and facilities during this interim period).
Episode 775 of Coronation Street was the first episode of the programme to be shown by the new station. Two years later they began their colour transmissions on Monday 6th April 1970, one of the first programmes in the new medium being Episode 968 of the Street shown that evening. The station renamed itself HTV at the same time to avoid alienating its non-Welsh viewers.
Along with Thames Television HTV was at the forefront of the 1979 ITV strike when striking staff were suspended and locked-out on 8th August and consequently viewers in the region never saw Episode 1935.
HTV changed ownership several times from 1996 onwards with both Granada Television and Carlton Television being owners at various points and has been owned by ITV plc since 2004. Its on-screen identity was changed to ITV1 and ITV1 Wales in 2002.
- HTV at Wikipedia.