Time On Our Hands

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Time On Our Hands title
TOOH, Delia's shorthand for Time On Our Hands

Time On Our Hands is Delia's theme music, created in 1962, for a 70-minute BBC television documentary of the same name "on the problems of increased leisure in the automated world of the future. Pure electronic sound."[1]

The programme was produced by Don Haworth and directed by Pieter Morpurgo[2] and is described as a

Documentary made in 1963, which projected the viewer 25 years into the future to 14th Sept. 1988, to look back over the events of the past 25 years. With Kingsley Amis, Stafford Beer, Aldous Huxley, Franklin Medhurst and Raymond Williams.[2]

Robin Carmody writes:

One of her earliest contributions - "Time On Our Hands" - is a superb subversion of a phrase which would normally evoke (especially in the context of 1962) new-found affluence, spare time and leisure, now rendered alienated, distant and isolated.[3]

and Delia said:

I had only done one other television programme before Doctor Who, called Time On Our Hands, using beautiful abstract electronic sounds. So I was very inexperienced, but making something from nothing was my secret.[4]


Under UK law, audio recordings made before 1963 are in the public domain.[5]



Time On Our Hands - Spectrogram.jpg


External links

  • Two extracts of the programme are among the whitefiles' Radiophonic Workshop Videos, the first of 10 minutes with her title music and City Music, the second of 30 seconds with more of her music as the background.

See also

Delia also made two pieces of incidental music for the programme: