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Friday, 19 October, 2001, 13:27 GMT 14:27 UK
Sir Jimmy back for TOTP Special
Jamie Theakston, Zoe Ball and Sir Jimmy
They're back: Jamie Theakston, Zoe Ball and Sir Jimmy
Original Top Of The Pops host Sir Jimmy Savile will step back in time on Friday to be a host once again for a special edition of the popular music show.

Sir Jimmy will be making a special guest appearance on the hour-long show which marks its return to London's BBC Television Centre after an absence of 10 years.

Steps will perform new single Words Are Not Enough
Steps will perform new single Words Are Not Enough
The new-look programme will also feature TV presenters Zoe Ball and Dermot O'Leary on the team.

But Sir Jimmy, 74, has been quick to point out that his appearance does not mark his return to the show he last presented in the 1980s.

"The BBC haven't got that much money, they can't afford me," he said. "I have a feeling they'll keep reeling me back in every now and then like a big fish."

He first introduced the enduring show from a converted church in Manchester on New Year's Day in 1964.

Natalie Imbruglia is among the performers
Natalie Imbruglia is among the performers
On that first night Rolling Stones, The Beatles and Dusty Springfield were among the performers.

Cigar-smoking Sir Jimmy said although the look of the current show was different, the spirit of the programme remained.

"For me, it's the same because the fun is the same," he said. "It's still as exciting, it's just different technically. But the spirit is the same because teenagers are still teenagers."

After the first TOTP in Manchester, the show moved to TV Centre where it stayed for 25 years before moving to Elstree Studios in Hertfordshire.

Sir Jimmy Savile and Louis Theroux
Sir Jimmy was also the subject of a Louis Theroux interview
Friday's show will take a look back at the 37 years of the show as well as include performances by Steps, Cher, Westlife, Natalie Imbruglia and Craig David.

Regular presenter Jamie Theakston will also be presenting - joining his former BBC One Live and Kicking co-presenter Zoe Ball.

TOTP The True Story author Geoff Simpson
"It's always fresh because the music's always fresh"
Who was the best Top of the Pops presenter?

Jimmy Savile

Dave Lee Travis

Jayne Middlemiss

Jamie Theakston

John Peel

254 Votes Cast

Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion

Top of the Pops
Is it still hitting the right note?
See also:

19 Oct 01 | Music
Behind the scenes at the Pops
18 Oct 01 | Music
TOTP editor plots fresh pops
18 Oct 01 | Music
Pops still tops after 37 years
19 Sep 01 | Entertainment
First TOTP awards launched
15 Aug 00 | Entertainment
Savile confronts modern art
23 Mar 01 | Entertainment
The story of the single
06 Oct 00 | Entertainment
'Banned' Frankie tops chart
06 Oct 00 | Entertainment
The Top of The Pops top 40
14 Apr 00 | Entertainment
Top 40 gets 4m sponsor
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