Aug 14, 2010
I remember listening to Peter Homfray on an R-107 communications receiver back in the early 1970s. They boomed in the mornings in a era when distance had magic. Visiting Melbourne was a far-off dream. With hindsight, I would say Radio Australia in the 1970's was one of the first social media stations - there was a lot of entertainment and personalised style programming in an era where there was no FM, no Internet and an international call was beyond the reach of most people. They entertained and informed with a truly personal touch. It had a sort of Facebook group feel to it all. Radio Australia is now in its 70th year and has opened up a website to discuss and celebrate the past. That prompted me to find ways to copy a DVCAM interview I made with Peter in 2004, in which we discussed Christmas Island and how a Brit ended up managing Australia's overseas radio service for 18 years. It is a very personal view on his time at RA. The superb Radio Heritage site has a lot more details on the transmitters used in the early days. Peter also revealed some of the work he did in India and Burma during the 2nd World War. He was part of a unit involved in deceiving the Japanese in Burma, helping to support the Chindits. What a fascinating man! Hope you enjoy our chat. It's over on vimeo here.