Link to Radio Heritage Foundation - radioheritage.net

The Co-operative Global Radio Memories Project



Kiwi Radio Hall of Fame Geoff Sinclair 1932-2011

Talkback star Geoff Sinclair dies

MICHAEL FIELD

GEOFF SINCLAIR

GEOFF SINCLAIR: The former school teacher specialised in a folksy, warm kind of talkback that set a benchmark for decades.

Geoff Sinclair, one of the original giants of talkback radio, has died, aged 79.

The former school teacher specialised in a folksy, warm kind of talkback that set a benchmark for decades.

He had a strong voice and a great laugh and seemed to find practically anything interesting.

A distinctive looking man, he summed up his style in an autobiography entitled "You Might Be Ugly - But You're Nice!"

He grew up in Auckland's Point Chevalier in a family of 10 that included his more famous brother, historian and academic Sir Keith Sinclair. All his brothers and sisters went into education.

Geoff had an early introduction into broadcasting as a child, becoming a "quiz kid" on 1ZB in Auckland.

He trained as a teacher and began working at Ponsonby Primary School.

Sinclair taught for years at Avondale College and among his more famous pupils was John Banks, Auckland's one-time mayor, now seeking to get back to Parliament as an MP.

He began working as a sport journalist, helping create Rugby News magazine and providing columns.

In the early 1970s the new Radio I introduced talkback radio to the New Zealand airways.

Boss Gordon Dryden said Sinclair and the late Tim Bickerstaff were the best ever pairing on radio.

Step-son Brent McAnulty says at the time it was regarded as "quite inflammatory" but by current standards seems now to be gentle.

He fronted shows on Radio Pacific and later the ZB network.

Sinclair was sports editor of the Sunday News and produced two long-running columns, Downtown and Pub Sky.

But his most memorable column is probably remembered everyday by thousands driving over the Auckland Harbour Bridge.

For more than a decade Sinclair kept a half-page column called Watchman's Island - named after the small islet between the bridge and Herne Bay, in the Sunday News.

With its small human tales of life in Auckland, it had thousands of followers.

Sinclair died following a long illness.

His funeral, to be held on Friday, is likely to be a celebration of a rich life, McAnulty says.

"He packed a lot into life."

He leaves behind a widow, five children and two grandchildren.

© stuff.co.nz July 25, 2011.

This material remains © Fairfax New Zealand Limited and is only to be used for non-commercial personal or research use. Any other use requires permission of the copyright holder.

For a current list of all Low Power FM stations broadcasting in New Zealand, visit our NZ LPFM Radio Guide.

Open Air Cinema logo

This feature is brought to you by
Open Air Cinema


^Top


Radio Heritage Foundation projects and activities connect radio, popular culture, history and heritage.

We operate as a non-profit organization where all donations and funds received go towards our costs of meeting these objectives. We are incorporated as a charitable trust in New Zealand under the Charitable Trusts Act 1957 [Registration # 1473801] and we are a registered charitable entity in New Zealand in terms of the Charities Act 2005 [Registration # CC25951].

We file an annual report including a financial report with the
New Zealand Charities Commission.
We are registered with the New Zealand Inland Revenue Department as having approved donee status for New Zealand tax residents who can claim a one-third rebate for every dollar donated to the Radio Heritage Foundation. Our New Zealand Goods & Services Tax [GST] registration number is 89-199-638.

We prefer to use environmentally sustainable goods and services where we can afford to, and we provide free community access worldwide to our collections, published research, preservation and promotion activities in a completely paper-free environment.

© Radio Heritage Foundation 2004 - 2017
Email us

Link to Freeparking