This morning’s switch off the analogue signal for HSV7 was marked with a five-minute tribute to 57 years of the station.
Opening with an introduction by Eric Pearce (pictured) from an early test transmissions in 1956, the tribute included snapshots of many HSV programs and personalities, including Ian Turpie, Brian Naylor, Olivia Newton John, Bert Newton, Ivan Hutchinson, Mike Walsh, John Farnham, Bill Collins, John Burgess, Graeme ‘Shirley’ Strachan, Video Village, Sunnyside Up, The Happy Show, Coles $6000 Question, Music For The People, The Penthouse Club, Homicide, Cash And Company, Ryan, Bluey, Cop Shop, Skyways, Big Girls Blouse (featuring the original Kath and Kim skit), Fast Forward and Deal Or No Deal.
Surprisingly there was a mention of Neighbours… the show that Seven launched in 1985 before axing it and having to see it go onto international success after Ten picked it up in 1986.
The clip ended with a vintage news bulletin announcing the channel shutting down due to a power dispute (apparently a very common occurrence in Melbourne in the ’70s).
ABC1 (ABV2) and SBS One (SBS28) were the last two Melbourne analogue channels to be switched off. Apart from HSV7 no other Melbourne channels signalled the end of the 57-year analogue era, although GTV9 newsreader Peter Hitchener, who has been at GTV since 1974, had the honour of switching off Nine’s analogue transmitter:
With all analogue signals now off the air SBS has commenced broadcasting its digital signal on the channel 7 frequency and will continue to simulcast on both channels 7 and 29 until Melbourne’s retune date in March 2014.
Australian television is now digital-only.