For reasons too inane to go into, earlier today, I found myself reading the Wikipedia page for the 1980s ITV daytime game show Crosswits. Crosswits was originally hosted by Barry Cryer, before he was replaced by Tom O’Connor and featured contestants solving crossword clues with the help of a celebrity guest.

Here are the opening credits:

Nice jumper, Tom.

I was initially impressed by the level of detail on the Wikipedia page, even including the start and end dates of each series. However, the bit that really got my attention was this detail:

From Series 2 onwards, it was networked on all ITV regions with the second series airing on Tuesday afternoons at 3:00pm (no episode aired on 17 March 1987 due to live coverage of Budget ’87) and the third series airing on Tuesday to Thursday afternoons at 2:00pm, except for TVS, who did move the days and time around.

The fact that someone felt the need to state that there was no episode of Crosswits broadcast on 17 March 1987 due to coverage of the budget pleases me immensely.

After a (somewhat exhausting) trawl through the Wikipedia page’s edit history, I was eventually able to locate when this detail was added. 16th April 2013 at 03:21.

What sort of person would edit the Crosswits Wikipedia page at three in the morning? This person, I guess. Quiz shows and video games.

Interestingly, there doesn’t appear to be a Wikipedia page for the 1987 budget. Surely, the very fact alone that there was no episode of Crosswits broadcast on that day specifically because of the budget broadcast makes it noteworthy enough to deserve its own page.

According to the Guardian, Nigel Lawson’s 1987 budget speech was the shortest since 1867. Lawson, no doubt, rushed through his speech so that he could get home in time to watch that day’s rescheduled episode of Crosswits. Had he known that day’s episode had been cancelled, perhaps his budget speech would have been longer. I can’t help but feel that there is a connection between this abridged speech and the global stock market crash just a few months later.

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