Radio Dunedin at 100

In 2022 New Zealand radio station “Radio Dunedin” celebrates 100 years of broadcasting.

The station was launched in late 1922, becoming the first radio station in New Zealand, and according to the station’s website is the fifth oldest station in the world (five weeks older than the BBC).

The Otago Radio Association first went to air on 4 October 1922, and celebrates 100 years of broadcasting in 2022. The station has had a number of call signs over the years including DN, 4AB, 4ZB (not to be confused with the government-owned station of the same name), Pioneer Radio, and from 1948 until the 1980s as 4XD. Between 1922 and 1990, 4XD was operated by the Otago Radio Association as a non-commercial and voluntarily-run radio station. In 1990, Radio Dunedin was set up as a commercial station, and a few years later was purchased by Radio Otago Limited which also operated 4XO.

QSL card issued by the station in 1933, then using the callsign 4ZB.
© Eric Shackle Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation.

TV News Reports

This news report aired on the 6pm NewsHub news bulletin on New Zealand’s “Three” network on October 2nd, 2022. Thanks to the Radio Dunedin – Documentary Facebook page for the link.

And from TVNZ’s One News:

QSL card issued by the station in 1970, then using the callsign 4XD.
© David Ricquish Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation.

Radio Dunedin – The Documentary

In 2017 this feature-length documentary was produced about Radio Dunedin. The film was directed by Grant Findlay, and follows the history of the station which has faced many challenges over its years including arson attempts, Government takeovers, lack of funds and numerous technical issues.

The movie has its own Facebook page at:

RNZ Feature & Podcast

In August 2021 RNZ published this interesting feature and podcast on the history of Radio Dunedin:

QSL card issued by the station in 1993, then using the callsign 4XD.
© David Ricquish Collection, Radio Heritage Foundation.

Radio Dunedin today

Radio Dunedin is part of MediaWorks Radio, which operates several other stations. MediaWorks runs the station from 6 am and 6 pm on weekdays. Air time is leased outside these hours by the Otago Radio Association, which is made up of volunteer presenters.

The station is aimed primarily at the 50+ age bracket, with a community focus, local news, and playing music primarily from the 1960s to 1980s. It is rated number three for share of commercial radio listening in Dunedin in the Radio Audience Measurement Survey.

The station broadcasts on 95.4 FM, 1305 AM, in the central city on 106.7 FM, and online.

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