Inverell history: On the airwaves

Wired for sound: 2NZ celebrated 75 years of Golden Radio in 2012 in their Byron Street studios.
Wired for sound: 2NZ celebrated 75 years of Golden Radio in 2012 in their Byron Street studios.

By 1971, Radio 2NZ had outgrown the Otho Street studios they had used since the 1930s.  Plans were made to build a new studio in Byron Street.

Inverell architect Robert Lockwood designed the building, and local contractors Smith and Robinson built 2NZ’s new home. The main feature was the studio layout of which there were three, looking into the control room. The building housed an open-plan front open office area where the reception, copywriting and schedule departments were located.

...2NZ played a vital part in broadcasting flood information throughout the listening area.

Other sections were for an engineer’s workshop, newsroom, and a much smaller record library which held CDs rather than vinyl records and 78s as it had done in Otho Street. There was also a large sales department, the manager’s and secretary’s office, as well as a lunch room and cleaners’ area.

The neon signs were designed and construction by Darrel Thompson.

Strat Ward was the manager in the new building until 1978 when he transferred to Orange to take over management of 2GZ, which also controlled 2NZ. Strat handed over the reins to Ted Rogers who had been assistant manager and news reader. During this time, there was a major change to Macquarie Broadcasting Service.

One of the community features of 2NZ was the broadcast of the Grafton to Inverell Cycling Classic. From its inauguration, 2NZ has been involved, firstly with the staff of the North West County Council using their two-way radio network, then to various service clubs and organisations both in Grafton and Inverell.

Community services were conducted over the years, including raising money to send Emmaville athlete Debbie Wells to the Olympic Games. Other fundraising was undertaken for the hospital and Inverell Sports Council. On several occasions, 2NZ played a vital part in broadcasting flood information throughout the listening area.

Over the years, the Byron Street Studios have seen and heard Greg Kachel in the newsroom and as station manager; Peter Caddey, who hosted breakfast as well as being at the helm and then Gerry Taveira who took over the breakfast session and made early mornings a joy to listen to.

2NZ celebrated 75 years of Golden Radio in 2012 in their Byron Street studios.