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Television Heritage Hunt

TVNZ is searching for the unique gems it needs to complete the most extensive collection of New Zealand television history.

For the first time in New Zealand a world class facility will exist to preserve the nation's television history for years to come. In March next year TVNZ will open the new New Zealand Television Archive at Avalon Studios.

This purpose-built production library facility is the only one in the country built to the exacting standards recommended for long term storage of film and videotape.

With a constant low temperature of 7 degrees Celsius and a very low 25% relative humidity the vaults provide conditions that will prevent degradation of the stored media for hundreds of years. The secure, protected, hi-tech environment with specialist shelving can hold over a million films and tapes; more than twice the amount of television production made to date in New Zealand.

When videotape was first used in the 70's, TVNZ, like other broadcasters, reused it but fortunately a significant amount of material survived and is in the current Television Archive Collection. Now that the Archive has appropriate storage it is keen to locate material that is missing.

Broadcasters throughout the world are seeking to fill gaps in their historical collections and TVNZ is doing the same. The New Zealand Television Archive wants to hear from anyone who has films or tapes produced by the NZBC, BCNZ, TVNZ or its channels TV ONE, TV2 and South Pacific Television. The Television Archive collection contains hundreds of thousands of films and tapes and so only masters or items that are not already in the collection are of interest.

If you have anything yourself, or know of anyone who has, please contact Sally Williamson at the New Zealand Television Archive Phone 04 914 5300; fax 04 914 5319; email: Archive @tvnz.co.nz

People may be wary of offering up material to which they do not have the copyright. In order to ensure no breach of copyright, the Television Archive has a comprehensive rights database and can identify material owned by TVNZ and its predecessors.

The Television Archive is looking for the films and tapes former (and current) employees might have stored at home as records of their work. Much of the material is on old professional formats that cannot be viewed today. The Television Archive will preserve newly found material on to Digital Betacam tape, the format recommended for long-term storage, and make a VHS copy to return to the person who provided the material.

For more information on the search for New Zealand Television Programmes contact:

Alan Ferris
General Manager
New Zealand Television Archive
Phone: 64 (04) 914 5303
Fax: 64 (04) 914 5319
E-Mail: ferrisa@tvnz.co.nz

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