On 1 May 1950, the first commercial radio station in South Africa, Springbok Radio took to the airwaves broadcasting in both English and Afrikaans. This followed almost 5 years of intense investigation by the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) and after consultations with both Lord Reith of the BBC and the South African Government it was decided to introduce commercial radio in South Africa to supplement the SABC's existing public service English and Afrikaans networks.
The first voice heard on the air that morning was that of Eric Egan. Eric would be well remembered for his daily "Corny Crack" and catch phrase "I Looooveee Yoouuu". Many of the drama programmes during the 1950s were imported from Australia but as time moved on and more funding became available, Springbok Radio produced almost all of its programmes within South Africa through a network of independent production houses. However, in the eighties the SABC ended up killing off many of these independent production houses when Springbok Radio closed down. If it was not for these production houses, Springbok Radio would not have survived. Almost 90% of programming came from them.
In 1976 television was launched in South Africa and this was followed by television commercials in 1978. Commercial TV was the major factor in the demise of Springbok Radio, which was very much dependant on advertising... Read More