Fred Dagg jokes around at the opening of the Avalon TV Centre
Fred Dagg promoting the Avalon facilities
In April 1975, TV One officially launched from Avalon Television Centre, New Zealand's first custom-made television facility. Comedy talent Fred Dagg (John Clarke) was asked to take part in its opening night celebration. The first excerpt shows a studio audience introducing Dagg with one of his famous catch cries. The second clip features Dagg in his best cut off dinner suit paying tribute to Avalon Television Centre or, as Dagg calls it: "the largest chaff container in the Southern Hemisphere". TV One started after the New Zealand Broadcasting Corporation split its single channel model into TV One and TV2 (South Pacific Television).
Fraser remembers being taken out to be shown the building by NZBC director-general Gilbert Stringer, while it was still being constructed. After working around various "slums" in Wellington, "Avalon looked like the 100-acre Kiwi pavlova paradise", he recalls. There was, however, one downfall with the new centre - it took the news-gatherers away from their sources. "It was a real problem for the people whose work depended on their ability to bump into ordinary people on a daily basis."– Former TVNZ Chief Executive Ian Fraser on the early days of Avalon TV Centre, The Dominion Post, 11 April 2011