Obituary: Lord Bernstein

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The Independent Online
LORD BERNSTEIN had many friends in Canada and made an important contribution to the early development of television in that nation's capital, writes Roy Faibish (further to the obituaries by Anthony Howard and Sir Denis Forman, 6 February).

He was a founding shareholder of CJOH-TV in Ottawa, a subsidiary of Bushnell Communications, which in turn was a founding member of Canada's independent commercial television network, CTV, in 1961.

He was responsible for bringing Stuart Griffiths, then with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, to London to assist in the start-up of Granada. Griffiths made an unheralded contribution to Granada, which was always acknowledged by Lord Bernstein and his Deputy Chairman Joe Warton. With Bernstein's support Griffiths later became President of CJOH- TV. I sat at several Bushnell board meetings at which Bernstein was present and though never 'ruthless' he was certainly cost-conscious and, more importantly, by his 'oversight' was the most penetrating and perspicacious of all directors when it came to programming.

There was a further link between Bushnell Communications and broadcasting in the UK and Bernstein. Ernie Bushnell of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation was seconded to the BBC during the early years of the Second World War and he and Edward R. Murrow were responsible for infusing both spirit and modernisation into the BBC's method of organising and stimulating their war correspondents. It was during this time that Bushnell met Sidney Bernstein, who encouraged him to be bold in his efforts at reform in a corporation they both held in the highest esteem.

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