Ten Eyewitness News 1992-1994

Air-date: 3rd July 1994
Bulletin: Late Edition

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1994 Sydney bushfire coverage (uploaded by Steve Rutherford)

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Nine was probably watching this coverage thinking “Gee, we could use a reporter like Damian Ryan in our Sydney news team!”? Because it wasn’t long after the January 1994 bushfires that he switched networks.

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Ten Headline News Update with Sandra Sully - Friday 23/4/1993



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A promo from Sydney in 1994 with a brief snippet of the rather odd split presentation by co-anchors Juanita Phillips and Ron Wilson: he upstairs in the newsroom, she in the studio.

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Was the studio too small for two people?

No, Sandra Sully and Ron had read together from the desk the year prior.

I read Mal Walden’s book and it seems to me that Carmel Travers had no idea how to run news and current affairs. She sacked Derryn Hinch and replaced him with Alan Jones (which flopped in 94).

A whole lot of talent left or walked out. Most notably David Johnston, Juanita Phillips and Anne Fulwood.

Also in reading Walden’s book it details how she tried to recruit a newsreader to replace Johnston behind Mal Walden’s back.

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Social distancing well ahead of its time. Why did they do that?

I think it was some hare-brained idea to add “immediacy” to the news in that Ron was “live in the newsroom”. :upside_down_face:

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Carmel Travers resigned from her position as GM of News & Current Affairs at Ten pretty soon after those three left in October 1995. At that time there seemed to be reports in the press (such as this one) with speculation about whether the news service would survive or the possibility of local weeknight bulletins would eventually be replaced by a national one, etc.

Did the idea of having one presenter in the newsroom and another on-set last overly long after Travers left? Or was it dumped even before then?

Johnston later said in press interviews that had he known Travers was going to resign he probably would have stayed on.

His move to Seven also came just after he was interviewed in a Seven Nightly News report, sitting in the Seven news room, to discuss the 20th anniversary of the Balibo Five killings, which included some of his former colleagues. Perhaps there was more than one reason that he was visiting Seven that day :wink:

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It didn’t last beyond ‘94 as I understand.

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The sad thing about it with DJ leaving was Travers tried to undermine Mal by bringing in Shane Dannet (former ABC Adelaide presenter) to read the First at 5 bulliten. With Travers saying Mal would replace Johnston with the morning news.

CanWest management overturned that and forced Travers resignation.

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She did something similar with the late news position when Anne Fulwood left to go to Seven to lead the late news.

She was alleged to have told Juanita Phillips she had the position all and secured but she was shocked when Sandra Sully was announced as Fulwood’s replacement. Juanita spat the dummy and resigned and went to be an inaugural reader on Sky News.

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The last time someone sacked Mal Walden it was a PR and ratings disaster and Travers was surely aware of that. CanWest were wise to step in!

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I found it bizzare how Travers did that. She also got rid of Hinch as well from memory.

I’m sure there’s more stories of how people were forced out. Those were just in Mal Walden’s book.

She seemed an odd choice for that role. She certainly had journalistic cred, previously working at ABC, Nine and on Towards 2000/Beyond 2000 for ABC/Seven, and becoming an executive of Beyond productions. Enough to qualify someone to become Head of News and Current Affairs for a national commercial network, though?

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Does anyone have any Ten News bulletins/updates from Adelaide or Perth around '94-95 ish?

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