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Hero image for Fred Dagg at the Opening of Avalon TV Centre

Fred Dagg at the Opening of Avalon TV Centre

Television (Excerpts) – 1975

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
A staggering 23,000 square metres of floor space made it one of the largest television-making facilities in Australasia. Former Lower Hutt mayor Sir John Kennedy-Good had persuaded the government of the time to plonk the Stalinist-style tower block in the middle of Hutt Valley, for the good of local development.
– Excerpt from an article about the history of Avalon TV Centre, The Dominion Post, 11 April 2011
He remembers roaming the massive halls and cavernous studios, watching his father [Ray Henwood] perform in front of a live audience, then being invited down to bow with them at the end. "It felt like a party every time we went out." He says there is nothing in Auckland to rival Avalon, with its massive studios able to accommodate good audiences, lighting rigs, and room to swing a camera in.
– Comedian Dai Henwood remembers visiting Avalon Television Centre, and his sadness at its demise, The Dominion Post, 11 April 2011
Gidday. How're you going, alright? That's the story. What we've got here is, ah, there's been a crying need for this in New Zealand over the past couple of decades ... ah, a decent sized wheat silo...
– Fred Dagg (John Clarke) officially opens New Zealand's biggest wheat silo/television centre in 1975