How an air-conditioning mechanic in Sydney Australia became an award winning broadcaster in Britain Part 55.

02Apr14

“We’d like to go ahead and hire you as the new drive-time presenter on 3GG in Warragul Victoria”. Finally Mark Vale had a vacancy at the radio station he was running over 400kms east of where we lived in Mount Gambier, South Australia. I’d been sending him demo tapes and talking to him on the phone for weeks, I couldn’t be happier.

It was 1995, I’d been presenting the Breakfast Show at 5SE in South Australia for nearly a year. The newly arrived Program Director was making things difficult for me and I’d been looking for work all over Australia. 5SE was my second professional radio job. I’d started out at 2PK in New South Wales. 3GG’s broadcast area wasn’t any bigger that 5SE’s, career-wise it was a sideways move but it just seemed to be a much better run operation. It was only about an hour’s drive from Melbourne and they offered me something neither 2PK nor 5SE had given me, a contract. That’s right, up until this point, Julie and I had moved everything we owned across Australia chasing my dream of working full-time on the radio and we had never had anything in writing, no job security whatsoever.

Mark asked for a fax number (remember them?). I gave him the 5SE fax number and told him to fax over the contact when nobody would be at work, 8pm, an hour after the radio station had gone to network for the night. I waited by the fax machine, the contract came through, I read it, signed it and faxed it back to him.

The next morning, after my show, I walked into my General Manager’s office and sat facing the framed photo of his wife, posing in a glamour shot (she was wearing a leather jacket and not much else) that he kept on his desk and always made me feel awkward. I gave him my letter of resignation with a month’s notice.

Julie and I had a lot to sort out before we made another inter-state move, our second in twelve months. We didn’t have anywhere to live in Warragul and had only ever been there once. I’d hoped that the boss would let me walk away right then and still pay me for the month. Instead, he insisted that if I wanted to still get paid I’d have to work the months’s notice. It was a decision I’m sure he still regrets today because of an incident that took place about a week later, more on that in another Craic.

Craic on!

You can listen to what I sounded like back then, here; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D3RfQVKOIak

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