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Nick Jr.
Nick Jr. logo 2009.svg
Logo since 30 April 2010.
CountryUnited Kingdom
Broadcast area United Kingdom
 Ireland
 Malta
HeadquartersNickelodeon UK, Rathbone Place, London (1993-2012)
MTV Networks Europe, Camden, (2012-)
Programming
Language(s)English
Picture format1080i HDTV
(downscaled to 576i for the SDTV feed)
Timeshift serviceNick Jr. +1 (2012-)
Nick Jr 2. (2006)
Ownership
OwnerParamount Networks UK & Australia
Sky Group
Sister channelsNickelodeon
Nick Jr. Too/Nick Jr. 2
Nicktoons
History
Launched1 September 1993 (programming block)
1 September 1999 (TV channel)
24 April 2006 (Nick Jr. 2)
Links
Websitewww.nickjr.co.uk
Availability
Streaming media
Sky GoWatch live (UK & Ireland only)
Now TVWatch live (UK only)
TVPlayerWatch live (UK only, TVPlayer Plus subscription required)
Virgin TV AnywhereWatch live (UK only)

Nick Jr. is a British pay television channel owned and operated by a joint venture between Paramount Networks UK & Australia and Sky Group. The channel is aimed at pre-school children.

History

Nick Jr. was first broadcast in the UK and Ireland on 1 September 1993 during the daytime hours from 9 am to 12 pm on weekdays on Nickelodeon,[1] though these hours varied initially. Its programming was a mix of shows from the US version of Nick Jr and other imported shows. Later in the block's existence, syndicated British childrens' programmes would be a main focus of the channel as well. Its identity followed that of the US feed of the block as well. By 1998 it was broadcast between 10 am to 2:30 pm.

On 10 June 1999, it was announced that the block would be spun off into a channel, and its new branding was being finalized.[2] The channel launched on 1 September 1999 as the world's first dedicated preschoolers' channel.[3] The slot on Nickelodeon continued until July 2000, initially broadcasting on Sky, and from 6 am to 10 am alongside Sky Sports 3 on analog satellite, although this schedule would sometimes be altered if sports were being covered in the early morning.[citation needed] However, on digital platforms, Nick Jr. aired from 6 am to 7 pm.[4]

On 3 September 2001, MTV Dance started broadcasting during Nick Jr's downtime hours after it was spun off from MTV Extra. MTV Dance acquired its own separate channel in 2002 and both MTV Dance and MTV Extra have since extended their broadcasting hours.

The channel refreshed on 4 February 2002. Dora the Explorer and The Hoobs had their premieres the same day of the rebrand. That day, the channel gained another hour at the end of the broadcasting day, now operating from 6am to 8pm.

On 19 July 2002, the channel moved its EPG slot on Sky to make way for the incoming Nicktoons channel.[5]

On 31 May 2004, Nick Jr extended its runtime to end at 10pm, in order to launch Noggin launched, a block that showed classic British children's TV programmes from 8 pm to 10 pm, causing the exodus of these shows from the main daytime schedule leaving more space for new shows.

On 5 September 2005, the Noggin block was changed to Nick Jr Classics as part of a channel-wide refresh (see Identity). The Backyardigans had its linear UK premiere the same day of the rebrand.

A version of Nick Jr. for Ireland was launched in 2006.[citation needed] This version, like the Irish version of Nickelodeon, shares the same schedule as the British version of Nickelodeon but has Irish adverts.[citation needed]

On 30 January 2006, a spinoff of the American Noggin, as a block showing Nick Jr programs on free-to-air sister channel TMF from 7 am to 9 am. It was promoted on Nick Jr.

On 24 April 2006, Nick Jr 2 was launched, initially as a 1-hour timeshift of Nick Jr., but within a year, this format was dropped and it became an alternative channel with a completely new schedule, but with Nick Jr Classics at the same hours.

On 25 September 2006, TMF rebranded its Noggin block as Nick Jr on TMF.

Following the removal of Nick Jr. Classics from the main Nick Jr. channel on 4 January 2009, normal programming ran to 6 am to 10 pm. The block would continue on Nick Jr 2. until July 2010, after which classic British childrens' shows ceased to be part of the network's library entirely.

In early 2009, TMF reverted its Nick Jr block back to Noggin, and it broadcast until March 2010 before it was shut down permanently, at which point TMF had become VIVA.

On 2 August 2010, Nick Jr. began broadcasting 24/7, with many old shows from the 2000s being re-added to fill the schedule.[6]

In July 2011, Nick Jr. 2 briefly shifted its sign-on to 5am, but this was reverted a month later.[7]

A 1-hour timeshift named Nick Jr. +1 launched on 2 October 2012 replacing Nicktoons Replay.

By 2013, Nick Jr 2. had begun broadcasting 21 hours from 3am to 12am, with teleshopping off air.[8] In 2014, it started broadcasting 24/7 when it became Nick Jr. Too.

On 3 November 2014, Nick Jr. 2 was renamed Nick Jr Too.

On 5 July 2016, Nick Jr. HD launched on Sky, replacing MTV Live HD's Sky slot.[9]

Identity

Nick Jr's logo from 1 September 1993 to 29 April 2010.
Nick Jr's logo from 1 September 1993 to 29 April 2010.

Between the launch of the block in 1993 and the launch of the channel in 1999, Nick Jr UK's branding largely mirrored that of the American feed, and the two would share the same ident packages.[10] When it first properly aired it was presented by Face who presented the UK-input from 1995 until September 2005 and was voiced by David Holt.

In 2001, the channel started a limited roll-out of Nick Jr US's ident package, starting with the up-next idents adopting the "Nick Jr Is Where I Play To Learn" song.

On the 4th of February 2002, Nick Jr. fully revamped into the said new ident package. It had a specific jingle, and the idents usually consisted of children playing around or dancing, and the logo appeared in a white circle on a plain brightly-coloured background at the end.[11] On some occasions, they would broadcast these atmospheric idents which included babies. Sometimes these idents would take up half the ad breaks, or sometimes they appeared in split-screen graphics and next bumpers.[12] Promo endboards were addded as well.

Dora the Explorer and The Hoobs had their premieres the same day of the rebrand. Just before closing at 8pm, it would air a bedtime segment hosted by Kevin Duala (host of the British version of Blue's Clues followed by a short closedown bumper featuring some characters from Nick Jr. shows and an announcement telling viewers to resume watching at 6 am, before cutting to a static screen with the characters and the broadcast times until 6 am the next morning.

In Autumn 2002, they updated their DOG to a much cleaner, organised and less opaque state.

Just before Noggin signed on, an ident showing the logo as two caterpillars played during the last advertisement break at 8pm.[citation needed] However, in 2005, this was replaced with a sting ident of the Nick Jr. and Noggin logos flipping back and forth.[13] After Noggin finished airing, it would cut to a variation of the aforementioned static closedown board.[14]

In July 2004, some in-vision morning presenters were introduced to the network. Neal Wright (Zak) and Jennifer Johnston (Jen) presented and hosted this block simply called "The Garden." Alongside them, there was a puppet plant called Bud, and a blue ball of light/firefly named Izzy. They were dropped in late 2005.[15]

Also around this period in 2004, Nick Jr. started to use the 2D American animal idents originally introduced there in 2003. It is unknown when they stopped showing them.[16]

Around the same period in 2004, Nick Jr. reeled in the new look of Face to their channel introduced in America the year prior, usually referred to as "Modern Face". He was still voiced by David Holt. Nick Jr. made the unusual decision to not drop the original Face, leaving Modern Face and Face's old look broadcasting simultaneously, much to the confusion of viewers. The UK-dubbed version of Modern Face is extremely hard to come across.[17]

Around the time of Spring 2005, a new animated presenter appeared on the channel alongside Face at the time. This was Piper O'Possum, which she presented for the UK input of Nick Jr. until its rebrand on April 30, 2010. She was voiced by Alex Kelly in the UK input and had a much longer shelf life in the UK than in the USA - the 2007 rebrand of the US version which scrapped Piper never launched in the UK. When the September 2005 rebrand happened, she was the main presenter for most of the day, but in the late afternoons she got taken off for the rest of the remaining hours and her segments of announcing shows usually got replaced with normal next bumpers.

Between this time and 4 September 2005, a mix of Old Face, Modern Face, Piper, and The Garden hosted the channel.

During the rebrand on 5 September 2005, all mascots except Piper O'Possum were dropped. In addition, Noggin changed its name to Nick Jr. Classics and the ident package that had been used since 2002 was dropped, as the international versions of Nick Jr. launched a 2D-3D animated pop-up-book-style ident package, with two animals (a parent and a child) forming the Nick Jr. logo, very similar to the package of Nick Jr. on CBS from 2004 to 2006. This package was designed by British animation studio Studio AKA.[18] Idents on Nick Jr. 2 had the number "2" appear at the end of each ident in the scenery. On 25 September 2006, Nick Jr. on TMF began using this package.

This package would be used on its then-new sister channel Nick Jr. 2 and on the main Nick Jr. channel until 29 April 2010. Before Nick Jr. Classics, both channels showed a sign-off ident telling viewers to come back at 6 am, and after Nick Jr Classics, cut to a night loop of the same ident playing over again.

During the time when Nick Jr, Nick Jr 2. and Nick Jr. on TMF co-existed, the three cross-promoted their programmes under the slogan "Three ways to play".

Between 2008 and 2014, the schedule after 6 pm was rebranded as "Nick Jr. Bedtime". A new bedtime look and song (Land of Dreams) was commissioned and played alongside the already existing night version of the 2005 idents and its song (Jimmer Jammers). The titular characters of the Early Worms, Arnie and Barnie, became hosts of this strand (and eventually the last hosts of any Nick Jr. feed internationally).

On 30 April 2010, Nick Jr. updated and rebranded to a prototype of the United States look. They used the animated American idents along with their own which included still shots of children in assorted places or doing things like letting go of a balloon, or being at a picnic.[19] Their branding, in general, had a different feel to the original American graphics and soundtrack, but it still had the same basis of preschool-style arts and crafts like the Noggin branding. Many soundtracks were reused from Noggin. Many of the design elements had features in common with the mainland European Nick Jr. feeds. Moose and Zee were brought over from the American Nick Jr. channel and the former Noggin block on Viva (which had been axed as part of the rebrand) to host the main Nick Jr. channel, with Moose's voice being dubbed by David Holt (voice actor). Just like on the US version of Nick Jr., Moose and Zee presented links between programmes and especially around up-next bumpers, although due to the need for advertisement space, they appeared irregularly and not at night, where they would be replaced by regular next bumpers.

In addition, Nick Jr. Classics was rebranded but was discontinued in July of that year. When Nick Jr. and Nick Jr. 2 signed off, they cut to an off-air slide,[20] and then played a night loop of the same ident repeating,[21] but the actual sign-off has not been found yet.

On 2 August 2010, when the main Nick Jr. stopped signing off, the Bedtime block was truncated to an 8pm finish. When Nick Jr. 2 expanded its broadcast hours, it broadcast the segment from 7pm to 9pm.[22]

However, on 7 January 2013, the channel rebranded again to the next United States look, which dropped Moose and Zee and the arts-and-craft style branding in favour of a 3D CGI world appearing in bumpers and promos where clips of the characters appeared.[23] The Bedtime strand was also revamped under this branding. There were also slight variations between the colour schemes on Nick Jr. and Nick Jr. 2, with the later opting for a colder colour palette.

However, some of the 2010 idents, especially the Christmas ones, were retained until December 2014, albeit with the new Nick Jr. endcap (of the logo changing colour multiple times).

While it was initially the same as the United States version, on 3 November 2014, the branding on the main channel was refreshed by Blue Zoo, and the Bedtime strand was dropped from both channels, leaving the channel without any hosts for the first time in 19 years. This new branding used CGI and 3D shapes like the previous one and used standard colour schemes for different parts of the day.[24] However, until 2019, the old-style had been kept for Nick Jr. Too.

On 18 February 2019, Nick Jr. dropped the "Smart Place to Play" look in favour of the "Ready to Play" branding adopted in the United States the previous year, featuring live-action children running in a 3D CGI space, often holding bubble wands in which clips of shows appear out of. Bumpers also show these children interacting with the Nick Jr. characters in live-action environments.

TMF/Viva block

A version of the US Noggin branding was used for the Noggin block on TMF/Viva. It was visibly stripped-back from the American version but still very similar. It was hosted by Moose A. Moose and Zee D. Bird from the American version, with Moose, dubbed over by David Holt, who previously dubbed Face for Nick Jr.

Slogans

Other related services

Nick Jr. Too/Nick Jr. 2

Nick Jr. 2's logo from 24 April 2006 to 29 April 2010.
Nick Jr. 2's logo from 24 April 2006 to 29 April 2010.
Nick Jr. 2's logo from 30 April 2010 to 2 November 2014.
Nick Jr. 2's logo from 30 April 2010 to 2 November 2014.
Nick Jr. Too's logo since 3 November 2014.
Nick Jr. Too's logo since 3 November 2014.

Another channel, Nick Jr. 2, was launched on 24 April 2006. When it launched, the idents and branding were just the same as the main channel. The differences were that logos on promo endboards and promos, in general, had a 2 included next to them. This also was used in the next bumpers and general idents. Nick Jr. 2 was initially supposed to work like a +1 channel, but later reran old shows that the main channel didn't air like I Spy or Sali Mali.

Later on, it showed its own exclusive programmes, and it was advertised as such. Examples of this are It's A Big Big World, the second season of Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!, and the Nick Jr. Classics block after it left the main channel. It started broadcasting for 24 hours in 2014, and changed its name to Nick Jr. Too on 3 November 2014.

Since October 2013, the channel has occasionally aired long-term marathons (usually one month) of the British preschool series Peppa Pig, during which it rebrands itself as Nick Jr. Peppa.[25][26] The channel has since broadcast marathons of the Canadian preschool series PAW Patrol in a similar manner, likewise rebranding as Nick Jr. PAW Patrol.[citation needed]

Unlike the main channel, Nick Jr. Too is not available on TalkTalk, Eir TV or WightFibre.

Noggin/Nick Jr. Classics

Noggin's logo from 31 May 2004 - 4 September 2005.
Noggin's logo from 31 May 2004 - 4 September 2005.

During the mid and late 2000s, Nick Jr. and Nick Jr. 2 presented a nighttime programming block dedicated to classic British children's programmes from the 1970s and 1980s under the title Nick Jr. Classics. The block launched under the name Noggin on 31 May 2004,[27] running every night from 8:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m.[28] It was rebranded as Nick Jr. Classics on 5 September 2005.

The block was discontinued on Nick Jr. on 4 January 2009 and on Nick Jr. 2 in mid-late 2010.

Noggin/Nick Jr. on TMF/Viva

Noggin started broadcasting on 30 January 2006, the first international feed of Noggin (excluding the former vintage block on Nick Jr. which only had the name in common). It was a children's television slot broadcast on TMF from 07:00 to 09:00 daily. It showed a selection of Nick Jr shows and often promoted the full Nick Jr. channels to viewers with only Freeview.

Nick Jr on TMF had replaced the strand Noggin on 25 September 2006, but its programming remained identical. It is unknown why the rebrand happened. It used the same ident and presentation package as its main sister channel, Nick Jr. Moose and Zee's segments were removed as well. Programmes shown included Maggie and the Ferocious Beast, Dora the Explorer, The Backyardigans, Thomas & Friends, Blue's Clues, LazyTown, Go Diego Go!, Little Bill amongst others.

It was reverted back to Noggin in early 2009. The final set of programmes shown were Go Diego Go!, Dora the Explorer, Little Bear, Bruno and Maggie and the Ferocious Beast. In its final year, Noggin received almost zero cross-promotion from Nick Jr., not even on its website.

Noggin was the first commercial children's television channel launched on 30 January 2006 on TMF to air on the UK's DTT platform, Freeview, followed by CITV, then lastly Playhouse Disney on ABC1.

Following the closure of TMF, the block continued on Viva until March 2010, when the Nick Jr. rebrand caused Noggin to shut down. However, the branding of Noggin (except the name "Noggin") and the Moose and Zee segments were adopted by Nick Jr. and used until January 2013.

Programming

Main article: List of programmes broadcast by Nick Jr. (British and Irish TV channel)

See also

References

  1. ^ "Nick Jr from Nickelodeon advert - 1993". YouTube. 7 January 2011.
  2. ^ Kids’ TV Thursday 10 June 1999 Newspaper: Aberdeen Press and Journal P9
  3. ^ "Nickelodeon takes on creative director". Design Week. 12 August 1999.
  4. ^ "Nick Jr. UK - Promo (2000)". 1 May 2021.
  5. ^ "NickToons added to EPG; Nick Jr. moves". Digital Spy. Retrieved 1 September 2022.
  6. ^ "What's On TV". 15 August 2010. Archived from the original on 15 August 2010. Retrieved 25 June 2022.
  7. ^ "What's On TV". 21 July 2011. Retrieved 7 August 2022.
  8. ^ "What's on | Nick Jr". 8 July 2013.
  9. ^ NickALive! Post Retrieved 16 Apr 2022
  10. ^ "Nick Jr. UK - Commercial Break 1998". 5 December 2017.
  11. ^ "Nick Jr UK Ident Ball 2002". YouTube An example of the 2002-2005 ident package. Retrieved 23 November 2021.
  12. ^ "Nick Jr. UK Baby Ident". YouTube An example of the 2002-2005 baby bumpers. Retrieved 23 November 2021.
  13. ^ "Nick Jr. UK - Switchover to Noggin (26th March 2005)". 26 March 2005. Retrieved 1 September 2022.
  14. ^ "Nick Jr (Noggin! block) - Continuity and Adverts - (14th September 2004)". 14 September 2004. Retrieved 1 September 2022.
  15. ^ "The Nick Jr. Garden (Nickelodeon 2004) Promos - Jennifer Johnston". YouTube A trailer for "The Garden.". Retrieved 23 November 2021.
  16. ^ "Nick Jr. UK Ladybug Ident (2004)". YouTube A US 2003-2004 ident on Nick Jr. UK. Retrieved 23 November 2021.
  17. ^ "Nick Jr. UK - Modern Face (27th March 2005}". YouTube A compilation of UK-dubbed Modern Face. Retrieved 23 November 2021.
  18. ^ 2005-12-15T08:30:00+00:00. "Studio AKA does Nick Jr idents". Broadcast. Retrieved 18 August 2021.
  19. ^ "NICK JR UK REBRAND". |date=March 2010 |access-date=1 June 2022}
  20. ^ "Nick Jr. 2 - Off Air | Nick Jr 2. UK - Off Air Slide".
  21. ^ "Nick Jr 2 UK Night Loop (2010 - 2013, INCOMPLETE, RARE)". Retrieved 20 June 2022.
  22. ^ "Nickelodeon UK Announces Sponsorship Opportunity For "Bedtime" Programming Block On Nick Jr. UK And Nick Jr. 2". nickalive.net. 7 April 2013. Retrieved 4 August 2022.
  23. ^ "NICK JR UK REBRAND". January 2013. Retrieved 1 June 2022.
  24. ^ "Nick Jr. Identity". 4 December 2014. Retrieved 4 August 2022.
  25. ^ Wallop, Harry (8 October 2013). "Dad of four: a family united by Peppa Pig". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 12 January 2022. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  26. ^ "Nick Jr. UK Announces It's "Peppa Pig" Month on Nick Jr. 2; Rebrands Channel As Nick Jr. Peppa". NickALive!. 1 October 2013. Retrieved 1 December 2013.
  27. ^ "There's something happening on Nick Jr ..." Nick Jr. UK. Archived from the original on 11 July 2004. Retrieved 7 August 2018.
  28. ^ "Tune in to Nick Jr. from 8pm nightly to catch up with your long lost pals and introduce them to your Kids". Nick Jr. UK. Archived from the original on 11 July 2004. Retrieved 7 August 2018.