Community radio history book out now

Amy Leiper, 9th November 2021

2SER is one of Australia’s first community radio stations having started on 21 October 1979 and opened by the Federal Minister for Education, Senator John Carrick.

An Incomplete History of Community Radio: 2SER’s 46 Boxes of Stuff documents the station’s history back to its start. The idea for the book was born as the station was fast approaching its 40th anniversary with a plan to use the 46 boxes of archives found in the basement of the studio building. First a few of the boxes were rescued from underwater, then they were all moved to UTS.

Going through all the boxes would be impossible for one person and Liz is grateful for all the help she had with the book. She says if it was just her, she would still be in that basement with the first box, getting distracted. Instead, the book was a real labour of love by a group of people. Colleague Chris Comerford did a preliminary inventory, making lists of each box’s contents and then Liz started digging, reading and identifying key stories for the book. Though there a lot of amazing stories to tell, the book didn’t seem possible until the station’s Project Officer, Jess Klajman helped drive the collection of new interviews needed to make the archives make sense. Co-author, Demetrius Romeo who had begun as a researcher to help with transcripts and fact check, stepped up as co-author and designer of the book.

Co-author, Liz Guiffre, says, “Even if we had copies of every single show and every single document from the last 40 years, there’s no way we could include them all in one book. And we certainly do NOT have copies of every show or document – only bits and pieces that have survived, for whatever reason. So we know there are holes here and sometimes we have deliberately left gaps or made spaces too.

“The idea of leading with the title ‘An Incomplete History’ is firstly an apology (to the volunteer or dear listener we may have accidently missed out on), but also to invite those people to be in touch to help us finish the story. The 50th anniversary will be here before we know it – let’s add to it.”

You can order the 1st trade paperback edition published by Halstead Press Australia, November 2021 from Stand and Deliver. It is currently available at the early-bird price of $29 (RRP $36) for delivery in December 2021.

Facebook comments



Half a room of community broadcasters are about to celebrate a significant milestone. So how best to prepare and make the most of a station's archive and history?


Presenter Carol Lucas has documented the history of the Taree station as a four part radio documentary.


In 2007 the Hope Vale – Pelican project (now in its 6th year) inaugurated a digital storytelling component into the program. The project is a partnership between Hope Vale Elders (championed by Des and Estelle Bowen) and Pelican Expeditions. In 2007 Pelican Expeditions and the Elders invited Samia Goudie, a researcher and digital storytelling consultant, to pilot a digital storytelling project with Natalie Davey, a founding member of Pelican Expeditions. The Hope Vale – Pelican (HVP) project is mainly run out of Connie’s beach, Cape Flattery in Cape York. The success of this pilot resulted in the design and implementation of a larger digital storytelling media camp being embedded as a co-creative practice in the 2008 Hope Vale – Pelican project. This paper seeks to tell the story of this process and explore some of the early findings of both the benefits and problems of using digital storytelling to promote social and emotional wellbeing and caring for country with an Indigenous community within a trans-disciplinary partnership project.