ZBC revisited

      26/4/2023       Next-->

I had occasion to visit ZBC Studios in Montrose last week to obtain a listener's licence.

It has been a long time since I had travelled that road across town, I had it down to a fine, rushing from pillar to post to fulfil my radio and TV shifts and studio bookings.

I had worked there as long back as when it was the Rhodesia Broadcasting Corporation. In those days it took me ten minutes to get from our home in Suburbs to the studio. Last week it took me a lot longer!!

The studio was nicely painted in bold green and white, and out of habit I looked for the armed guards on the rooftop but there were none there!!
The reception area was still the same, vast, cold, impersonal, but my home from home, which had been the studios to the right, where I spent an inordinate amount of deliriously happy times, were all locked up.

I was directed down the corridor to the left and was shown the Licensing Department, which is now in the office of the then RBC General Manager James Robinson. My goodness, my knees were trembling, to be summoned to Jimmy Robinson's office was a traumatic experience, more than likely pertaining to some dreadful misdemeanour!!

Working the Radio Matopos shift, I was five minutes late for a roster duty and this was tantamount to treason!! We were logged in thirty minutes before the shifts started and woe betide anyone who arrived late, even by thirty seconds!!

Names and faces came flooding back as I chatted pleasantly with the licensing staff. Most of my work, prior to 1980, was at the television studios next door, where I started work as Martin Lee's assistant in a programme called 'What's my Line' and of course my fondest memories were of the nightly news bulletins where I co-anchored with wonderful people at the Montrose Studios - people like James Thrush, Ken Jackson, Fortiny Fowler, Jan Smith, Brian Williams and Dave Emberton.

What a fabulous crew worked at ZBC/TV back in the Days of Yore!!

Record library ladies led by Delvine Allen, Cameramen Martin McGhee, Juan Basson, Rueben Munjeri, the Engineers, Directors - Livingstone Matangadure, Peter Kritzinger, Producers- Moolji Parshotam, Val Lunn, Les Wilson, my feisty Programme Operator - Cheryl Bridgeford and countless others involved in the running of this incredible institution.