FTN which I want to say stood for the Flextech Television Network was an early Freeview Channel from back in the days when the platform was getting going after the collapse of ITV Digital.

The channel was made up mainly of programmes produxed for Flextech’s other channels (like Challenge, Bravo, Living) . In the early days the channel wasn’t really much cop and it only broadcast from 6pm until 6am.

Apart from Most Haunted which I confess I tuned into in the early days there wasn’t much great on the channel. At one point the channel started showing animations with series like Dilbert based on the comic strip and Bob and Margaret.

The later was originally a channel 4 series and was about the titular Bob and Margaret and their life, a British version of the Simpsons it wasn’t but the characters and the storyline were enough to draw me in.

Bob and Margaret don’t look happy to be on FTN

In the later years the channel started showing some of the more popular programmes (usually archive programmes) from Flextech’s channels with The Crystal Maze and the Krypton Factor standing out for me.

This was the point the channel improved. As I’d never had multi channels I’d not really had access to that kind of content and it was nice to relive programmes I hadn’t seen for many years.

As for FTN, Flextech became Virgin Media TV and so it was relaunched as Virgin 1 with a bit more of a budget and a sense of it being its own channel rather than a ‘shop window’. It was the same, but the world had moved on.

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