ABC1 (British and Irish TV channel)

ABC1 was a television channel owned by the Disney-ABC Television Group division of The Walt Disney Company, available to the viewers in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. ABC1 used the branding of the Disney-owned American network, ABC.

ABC1 logo
Picture format576i (4:3 SDTV)
OwnerDisney–ABC Television Group
Launched27 September 2004; 17 years ago (2004-09-27)
Closed26 September 2007; 15 years ago (2007-09-26)
Replaced byPlayhouse Disney + (Sky)
Links (archive)
(at time of closure)
FreeviewChannel 15 (except Wales)
(06:00 - 18:00)

The channel had general entertainment programming with programming from the US parent channel, apart from the weekend morning programming block Playhouse Disney, which was aimed at children and also aired on Disney Channel in the United States of America.[1][2]


ABC1 channel initially launched exclusively on the British digital terrestrial television platform Freeview on 27 September 2004 but it only broadcast daily from 6am to 6pm[2] with the expectations to eventually broadcast 24/7 by 2010. The channel did not air commercials for the first few months to build up viewers.[3][4] In December 2004, it was launched on Telewest's digital cable service,[5] and on 14 December on the NTL digital cable service.[6]

In March 2005, ABC1 took its first advertisement from Procter and Gamble.[7] Also in 2005, Sky started carrying the channel.[8] In Summer 2006, a Playhouse Disney block was added to the schedule in the morning.[1]

It was announced on 7 September 2007, that ABC1 would shutdown, due to Disney deciding to concentrate on their other channels and lack of primetime availability on Freeview.[9] Despite being scheduled to close down on 1 October 2007, ABC1 stopped broadcasting early on all UK & Republic of Ireland TV platforms at noon on 26 September 2007, a day before its third anniversary. The channel was then replaced by a timeshift service of Playhouse Disney.



  1. ^ a b Stewart, Lianne (1 April 2006). "New kid on the U.K. Freeview block". Kidscreen. Brunico Communications Ltd. Retrieved 3 April 2015.
  2. ^ a b Deans, Jason (5 August 2004). "ABC spells out plans for Freeview channel". The Guardian. Retrieved 19 February 2014.
  3. ^ (5 August 2004). Disney plans Freeview TV channel. BBC News. Accessed on 19 February 2014.
  4. ^ (5 August 2004). Disney plans ad-free start for new channel. Accessed on 19 February 2014.
  5. ^ (7 December 2004). ABC1 expands on to UK cable. C21 Media. Accessed on 19 February 2014.
  6. ^ Shelley, Darren (14 December 2004). "ABC1 comes to ntl". Retrieved 20 February 2014.
  7. ^ "ABC1 takes first ads". Broadcast Now. 24 March 2005. Retrieved 20 February 2014.
  8. ^ Welsh, James (26 September 2007). "Disney pulls plug on ABC1". Digital Spy. Retrieved 26 September 2007.
  9. ^ "Disney closes U.K.'s ABC1". Variety. 10 September 2007. Retrieved 2 February 2021.
  10. ^ a b c d e f "ABC1". Archived from the original on 27 February 2006. Retrieved 31 January 2021.
  11. ^ a b c d e "ABC1". Archived from the original on 7 April 2006. Retrieved 31 January 2021.
  12. ^ a b c d Deans, Jason (5 August 2004). "ABC spells out plans for Freeview channel". The Guardian. Retrieved 31 January 2021.
  13. ^ a b "ABC1". Archived from the original on 16 January 2007. Retrieved 31 January 2021.

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