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The 2MW Story


The Postmaster-General's Department of the Commonwealth of Australia first issued The Tweed Radio and Broadcasting Company Pty Ltd with a broadcasting station licence under the Wireless Telegraphy Act 1905-1936 (Licence No 127) in 1936. The license allowed 2MW to erect a Broadcasting Station at Murwillumbah "one and ¾ miles North East from Murwillumbah Post Office" and to operate from 6.11.1936 to 5.11.1938.

Application for the commercial radio licence was made by Mr A A (Arthur Aubrey, known as Aub) Budd, A C Pratt, F E Nicholl as Directors, and J A Small as Secretary of the Tweed Radio and Broadcasting Company Pty Ltd.

The company had been incorporated on 30th November 1936 and sought shareholders among the local community. Following a slow start it was ultimately established with 75% of shares held by the Budd Group and 25% by the Tweed Daily. Members of the original board of the Tweed Radio and Broadcasting Company included “Mr F E Nicoll, Mr J T Raward, Mr A C Pratt, Mr J C Price, the latter two representing the Tweed Daily, and Mr A Budd as Chairman.
The official opening of the station and first 2MW broadcast took place on the evening of 2 September 1937, only 5 years after the commencement of broadcasting by the Australian Broadcasting Company - ABC). The program for the opening night broadcast was published in that day's edition of the Tweed Daily.

The official opening was performed by the Minister for Works and Local Government (Hon. E.S. Spooner, MLA) and was preceded by a formal dinner to mark the occasion, held at the Hotel Murwillumbah. The guest list for the dinner together with quotes from a number of the speeches given during the opening broadcast were published in an article in the Tweed Daily the following day (3 September).

The Tweed Daily article (3 September) declared “The function [dinner] was attended by a large gathering representative of interests and public bodies embraced in the area from Brisbane to Lismore, and the various speakers were generous in their praise of the station and the benefits it would confer on the area to be served.” Following the dinner the party adjourned to the broadcasting station in Condong Road for the official opening.

Among the first words spoken by Mr A A Budd (as Chair of the 2MW Board of Directors) at the inauguration of Radio 2MW were ‘our earnest ambition is to provide a service that will be of material benefit to all sections of the community. I feel very confident", he continued "that this station, which I may say is your station, will prove to be not only a most useful commercial medium, but will be valued greatest because of the part it will play in the advancement of education and knowledge of affairs, the musical art, social intercourse, sport, and all those things which go to make the lives of people more useful and happier" .

The role played by Mr T A Small in initiating the action which ultimately led to the granting of a licence to the Company and in "setting in motion the forces which were responsible for station 2MW being on the air" were also acknowledged by Mr Budd.
Standard Telephones and Cables (Australasia) Ltd, and Lekmek Radio Laboratories were acknowledged for their supply of transmitting and studio equipment; Mr L N Schultz, consulting engineer for his advice on complex technical matters, Mr P S Buchanan and Mr H P Hancock for their role as architects, and Mr Mervyn Vardy builder.



The Radio Collection

The 1930s

These Art Deco radios were made by Amalgamated Wireless Australia (AWA), and are modelled after the New York Empire State building. They are named "The Fisk" after Australian radio pioneer Ernest Fisk. The most common colours of brown and black are made from Bakelite, and are believed to be the first moulded plastic radio in Australia. The white model, marbled with orange, is one of the rarest colours of this model.
1930s radios
Donated by Mike Johnson.
MUS1993.4.6
Donated by Mike Johnson.
MUS1993.4.6
Donated by Geoff Mosley.
MUS1997.105.2


The 1940s

Radios produced during the 1940s were quite simple in their design and production. WWII caused a shortage of materials and many radios designed during this time favoured function over elaborate design. It wasn't until the end of WWII that new technologies and materials developed during the war were adopted by the consumer market and the design and popularity of mantle radios flourished.

'Beehive', mantel or tabletop type, made by The Kreisler Radio Company, Sydney, 1946-1947.

Donated by Stan Doggar. MUS2002.45.1
'ET415', made by the Ultra Electric Company, United Kingdom, 1947.

Donated by Keith Pickering. MUS1991.5.3
'Monarch BKQ', portable type, made by Eclipse Radio Pty Ltd, Melbourne, 1949.

Donor unknown. ID: 33212



Radio model 517MY, bakelite, made by Amalgamated Wireless Australia, Sydney, 1948.

Donated by the Murwillumbah RSL. MUS2004.60
'Beehive', mantel or tabletop type, made by The Kreisler Radio Company, Sydney, 1946-1947.

Donor unknown. ID: 32851
'Tasma Twin Four 1103', bakelite, Mantel type, made by Thoma and Smith Tasma, Australia, 1949.

Donated by Kevin McMahon. MUS1990.20


The 1950s

The 1950s were the heyday of radios in Australia. New ways to mould plastic were invented, and wooden units gave way to colourful and attractive consoles. Families often had more than one in the home.

The introduction of television to Australia in 1956 saw the end of radio's wave of popularity. Many entertainment programs that were played through the airwaves moved to the new medium of television. Some people even predicted the death of radio all-together.

'Technico Pacemaker', made by Collier and Beale, New Zealand, 1950s.
Donor unknown. MUS2001.120.2
'Hotpoint', Mantel type, model V55ME, made by Australian General Electric, Sydney, 1950. Donated by Kevin Tyler. MUS1986.35.1Radio, mantle type, home made using butter box for console, c 1950s. Donor unknown. L041G-89


'Little Nipper 64-52', plastic, mantel type, made by His Masters Voice (HMV), Sydney, 1954.
Donated by Mike Johnson. MUS1993.4.8
'Mendelssohn A526M, bakelite, Mantel type, made by Music Masters Radio Company, Brisbane, 1953.
Donated by Wally Budd. MUS2002.10
1
'Radiola 563MA', plastic, mantel type, made by Amalgamated Wireless Australia, Sydney, 1954.
Donated by Mike Johnson. MUS1993.4.5

Radio, model 11-59, Mantel type, made by Kriesler Radio Company, Sydney, Australia, 1955.
Donated by Howard Foster. MUS1998.58.1.a
Radio, mantle type, home made using butter box for console, c 1950s.
Donor unknown. L041G-89
'Radiola 573MA', plastic, mantel type, made by Amalgamated Wireless Australia, Sydney, 1955. Donated by Robin Johnson. MUS1993.56.11

'Transistor 8', model 7L12, portable, with pop-up rotoscope, was introduced as the worlds first solar powered radio, made by Admiral (brand) Continental Radio and Television Company, USA, 1956.
Donated by Peter Weston. MUS2001.29.1
'Kelvinator 63K', plastic, branded by Kelvinator Pty Ltd, made by His Masters Voice (HMV), Sydney, 1955.
Donated by Marion Catts. MUS1998.163.1
'Radiola 5', 575PZ, plastic, made by Amalgamated Wireless Australia, Sydney, circa 1956. Donated by Robin Johnson. MUS1993.56.7

'Healing '5' Golden Voice 412E', plastic, made by Healing, A.G., Ltd, Melbourne, 1959.
Donor unknown. MUS2001.120.1
'Healing '5' Golden Voice 412E', plastic, made by Healing, A.G., Ltd, Melbourne, 1959.
Donor unknown. MUS2001.120.1
'Hotpoint', plastic, Mantel type P64MEC, made by Australian General Electric, Sydney, 1954.
Donated by Robin Johnson. MUS1993.58.2

The 1960s

The 1960s marked a huge leap in technology for radios. The older style vacuum tube radios began to be replaced in popularity with transistor technology. Radio design became smaller and more portable, allowing people to take their device wherever they went.

Radio, mantel model 11-99, made by Kriesler Radio Company, Sydney, 1960
Donated by Stan Doggar. MUS2000.45.1
'Transistor 7', portable type 7192, plastic / leather, made by Standard Telephones and Cables, Sydney, C.1960
Donated by Martin O'Brien. MUS1993.67.1
'Little Nipper Super 5', portable, made by His Masters Voice (HMV), Sydney, Australia, 1960-1965
Donated by Robin Johnson. MUS1993.56.8


'C-491A', mantel type, made by General Electric, USA, c 1960s
Donated by Robin Johnson. MUS1993.56.9
'Radiola eight B29', leather / canvas / plastic, made by Amalgamated Wirless Australia, Sydney, 1963
Donated by Ernie Cobb. MUS1995.27
Radio, mantel model 11-99, made by Kriesler Radio Company, Sydney, 1960 Donated by Alex Wilson. MUS2003.78

'Radiola Transistor Eight' portable, leather / plastic / canvas, made by Amalgamated Wireless Australia (AWA), Sydney, 1964
Donor unknown. ID: 33228
'Radiola Transistor Eight (8) 208PY', leather / canvas / plastic, made by Amalgamated Wireless Australia (AWA), Sydney, 1964
Donated by Mike Johnson. MUS1993.4.7
'World-Wide T-100MD', leather / plastic / canvas, portable type, made by National Panasonic, Japan, c 1965
Donated by Agnes Davies. MUS1998.115

'Pocket Radiola R66', made by Amalgamated Wireless Australia (AWA), Sydney, c 1965

Donated by John Hay. MUS2004.48

'Sprite', plastic, portable type, made by His Masters Voice (HMV), Sydney, 1967

Donated by All Saints Anglican Church. MUS1999.83





Last Updated: 27 August 2014