Home and Away is a television serial created by Alan Bateman and produced by the Seven Network. The idea for the series came to Bateman (then head of drama at Seven) after he stopped to buy ice-creams in a small country town in southern NSW. While chatting to some locals, he learned that the town was unhappy about plans to build a home for foster kids from the city. At that time, Channel Seven was still smarting from its decision to let Neighbours go to the Ten Network, where it had become hugely popular, and was looking to create another series to rival its success. Bateman saw in the idea that became Home and Away the potential for plenty of storylines and conflict by having streetwise city kids being relocated to a small regional environment,
In the beginning, the series focused on Pippa and Tom Fletcher, who, being unable to have children of their own, decide to become foster parents. When Tom is retrenched from his city job, the couple buy the rundown Summer Bay Caravan Park and move there with their five foster children. Soon after arriving, they also take in troublesome Bobby Simpson.
The series debuted in January 1988 with an hour-long telemovie. Although this rated well, the series itself took some while to develop an audience. Having learned their lesson from the Neighbours debacle, Network Seven gave its new show time, and its ratings gradually increased. As with Neighbours, the Home and Away series and performers became very popular in the United Kingdom.
'The day of Bianca's wedding has arrived, Vittorio waits nervously at the alter as his stunning bride walks down the aisle towards him. They say their vows but Bianca hesitates for a moment and then tells Vittorio that she can't marry him. In front of all her friends and family she rushes back down the aisle and into the arms of her true love, Liam Murphy. In shock, Vittorio tries to drag Bianca away from Liam, but Romeo steps in and lands a punch that knocks him out cold. Bianca and Liam ride off into the sunset on his Harley Davidson. In the meantime, John and Gina save the day. Not being one to waste a good opportunity, John is prompted by Gina into telling everyone that there will still be a wedding today between himself and the beautiful Gina Austin. Colleen is quick to offer her services as Matron of Honour and Xavier happily steps in as best man. All seems to be going well until Xavier sees April's tear streaked face. She is being taken back to Europe by Joanne and has no idea if she will ever return to Summer Bay. There are more tears from Nicole when she confesses to Marilyn that she is pregnant to Penn Graham! Detective Robertson really spoils the party when he arrives with Graves to arrest Alf for Penn's murder. The residents of Summer Bay watch as Alf is taken away in handcuffs!'
Source: Home and Away homepage, www.au.tv.yahoo.com/home-and-away/ (sighted 08/11/2011)Sydney : Channel 7 , 2010
The definitive history of Australian TV soaps, Super Aussie Soaps examines Australian television serials, in chronological order from 1958 to the early 2000s. Among the series presented are Bellbird, Number 96, The Sullivans, Prisoner, Sons and Daughters, Neighbours and Home and Away.