I suppose deciding when to end a successful series is always a difficult call to make. Brookside clearly went on a few years' too long - the final episode was one of the most surreal experiences in the history of TV soap, but by then the producers were clearly taking the piss. And Eastenders, in my view, should have finished about five years ago when it still maintained a modicum of artistic credibility, before they started resorting to Dallas-style stunts like bringing people back from the dead.
If I'm honest, Grange Hill has probably passed its sell-by date too. The saddest and yet posibly most perceptive comment I have seen on its demise came from a commenter on the BBC website who said:
"Things have changed too much in both education and society. If Grange Hill were to reflect the lives of teenagers today it would need to be shown after the watershed and not during children's prime viewing slots."
Be that as it may, as a "first generation" viewer from the late 70s, nothing for me can sully the memories of Tucker, Cathy, Gripper, Duane, Suzanne and of course Messrs Bronson and Baxter, the kind of old-school teachers who simply wouldn't exist in today's education system.