DDQ acquired its first video recorder in 1967.   Despite being transistorised and costing $18,000, It wasn't a `pukka' recorder, according to broadcast standards people because it was a `helical scan' machine, and therefore could only be used for a small percentage of programme time.  (I think it was 3%)

The first person to be recorded by the unit was the then Hon. Reg Swartz, Minister for Civil Aviation.   Reg presented a a 15 minute Sunday night programme called, Canberra Report.  

A publicity photograph I  sent to the TV mags and the Toowoomba Chronicle had Reg `on set' (the studio news desk with a large picture of Canberra behind him) on the left of frame and Frank Balfour (Ass. Chief Engineer) operating the recorder while viewing Reg on a monitor on the right of frame.    The station should have a copy of that photograph.

I've added the recorder story to the EQUIPMWNT file, but if anyone can add further details of the unit, please do so.

Before the use of the recorder,Reg presented his reports live each week.   The introduction and back-announce to his Canberra Report was done from the V/O booth.   After the show one night I came out of the booth and into Master Control.   Immediately the team said, "Do you know what you called him tonight"?    "Yes", I replied, "The Minister for Civil Aviation".    "You did not" they said together,"You called him the Civil Minister for Aviation".  "I did not" I answered. "Oh yes you did" I must have.

Addendum: The late Rreg Swartz was, as I knew him, a nice person.   He enlisted in the 2nd. A.I.F.  and during World War 2 was captured by the Japanese.   He spent time in Changi Prison , followed by time working on the infamous Burma-Thai (death) railway.

Reg was born in Brisbane and attended Toowoomba grammar.   He went on to serve in several  Liberal Governments. 

 Bob Hargreaves  

The "helical" was the cause of the most frustrating interview I ever did on DDQ. We were reecording a segment for my afternoon show with Dawe ? the poet from The uni, and as I was well into the interview, a storm nearby sent the "helical" into a spin.The boys told me we would have to start again. No such thing as editing the interview? We were well into the second interview when another storm surge obviously threw the machine off again!!!!!  On the third attempt I got the briefest and least interesting interview possible because Mr Dawe had answered all the questions in the previous two and his brain told him there was nothing left to talk about.
Errol R J Morrison - 22/08/2012 Add a comment
Hi Errol, not the same helical Bob is talking about. The one you mention came after. Detail s soon in the equipment section. 
Dave Powell - 06/09/2012 Add a comment