|Sydney, New South Wales|
|Slogan||We Are The One|
|Channels||Digital: 8 (VHF)|
|Owner||Nine Entertainment Co.|
(TCN Channel Nine Pty Ltd)
|First air date||16 September 1956|
|Call letters' meaning||Television|
New South Wales
|Former channel number(s)||Analog: 9 (VHF) (1956-2013)|
|Former affiliations||Independent (September 1956-November 1956)|
Australian Television Network (1956-1963)
|Transmitter power||200 kW (analog)|
50 kW (digital)
|Height||259 m (analog)|
260 m (digital)
TCN is the Sydney flagship television station of the Nine Network in Australia and is located at Willoughby. The licence, issued to a company named Television Corporation Ltd headed by Sir Frank Packer, was one of the first four licences (two in Sydney, two in Melbourne) to be issued for commercial television stations in Australia. TCN-9 is the home of the NRL coverage and national-level Nine News bulletins.
TCN began broadcasting on 16 September 1956, and became the first station in Australia to begin regular transmissions. Test broadcasts, initially consisting of a test slide and later documentaries and dramas, had commenced two months earlier on 13 July 1956. The first TV tower was built there in 1956, but was replaced by a taller one in 1965 which is the tallest lattice tower in Australia at 233 metres, and is now operated by TXA Australia which operates another tower nearby at Artarmon.
The first words spoken on the station were by John Godson, who introduced the station audio-only, shortly before the first program, This Is Television, was introduced by Bruce Gyngell. As Godson's voice only was heard, Gyngell (who spoke and was seen) is regarded as the first person to "appear" on Australian television. Original footage of Gyngell's opening address is not believed to exist, with the oft-screened "opening" footage being re-created in 1959 for archival purposes. Other early programming included the 1958 variety music program Bandstand which was launched by Brian Henderson. It lasted for 14 years on the station and launched the careers of many Australian performers.
In 1957, the station formed an affiliation with Melbourne station HSV-7, allowing them to share programming. In 1963, station affiliations changed; TCN-9 formed part of the National Television Network with GTV-9 in Melbourne, QTQ-9 in Brisbane and NWS-9 in Adelaide. These stations formed the basis of what is now the Nine Network, although only the Sydney and Melbourne stations were owned by the Packer-controlled company Nine Network Limited.
On Sir Frank Packer's death in 1974 ownership of Nine Network passed to his younger son Kerry Packer. Kerry's older brother Clyde Packer had been groomed to take over from their father but after a bitter split with his father ca. 1970 he relinquished his role in the company and subsequently moved to the USA. In January 1987, Kerry Packer sold the Sydney and Melbourne stations to Alan Bond's Bond Media for $1.055 billion, including $200 million in shares of Bond Media. Bond already owned the Perth and Brisbane Nine affiliate stations (among others). In 1990, Bond Media's inability to pay out preference shares to Packer forced Nine into receivership. In July 1990, Packer bought back the expanded Nine network (Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane) for only $200 million, one-fifth of what he sold it for. Perth was not included due to Bond selling it to Sunraysia Television before Packer buying back the company.
In 1994, Packer's print operations (owned by Australian Consolidated Press) and the Nine Network were merged into one new company, Publishing and Broadcasting Limited (PBL). On 1 October 1997, TCN-9 performed the first on-air trial of digital broadcasting in the southern hemisphere.
TCN commenced digital television transmission in January 2001, broadcasting on VHF Channel 8 while maintaining analogue transmission on VHF Channel 9. The analogue signal for TCN was shut off at 9.00am AEDST, Tuesday, 3 December 2013.
In 2014 and 2015, TCN produced both Inside Story and The Verdict for the Nine Network, hosted by Leila McKinnon and Karl Stefanovic respectively. The Verdict did not build a solid audience and as expected the program was axed in 2016.
In January 2017, following the affiliation formed between Nine and Southern Cross in 2016, the station became home to the new Nine News Canberra and Southern NSW bulletins. The bulletins are anchored by Vanessa O'Hanlon.
It was also announced to public and then staff, that after 64 years at Willoughby, TCN9 would move day-to-day operations including News and Current affairs division, to 1 Denison Street, North Sydney. On the 25th of October 2017 it was announced that TCN9 will record larger scale studio production, such as The NRL Footy Show and The Voice etc. from the new Studios in Moore Park. Stage 4 will become home to all TCN9 productions, before moving into a refurbished Sound Stage 5 in twelve months time.
Nine News Sydney is TCN's flagship nightly news bulletin presented by Peter Overton on Sunday to Thursday nights and (yet to be announced) on Friday & Saturday nights. Sports news is presented by Cameron Williams on Sunday to Thursday nights and Erin Molan on Friday and Saturday nights. Amber Sherlock presents the weather on Sunday to Thursday nights and Belinda Russell on Friday and Saturday nights. Allison Langdon, Mark Burrows and Ben Fordham are regular fill-in presenters.
Brian Henderson was Nine's Sydney news presenter for a record 45 years - including 38 years presenting on weeknights. Retiring in November 2002, Henderson was succeeded as weeknight presenter by Jim Waley, who was at the time host of the Sunday program and was one of Nine's most experienced presenters.
In January 2005, despite some considerable ratings success, Waley was replaced as weeknight presenter by Mark Ferguson, who was previously the weekend presenter. Ferguson's successor as weekend presenter Mike Munro resigned in 2008 and was replaced by Michael Usher.
In 2009, following a continuing run of poor ratings, Ferguson was demoted to his former role as weekend news presenter, with Peter Overton taking over as news presenter on weeknights. Later in the year, Ferguson was removed from the presenting duties on the Sydney bulletins after announcing his decision to move to the Seven Network, but he didn't move to Seven until he trialled the hosting duties on Nine's Afternoon News only appearing on-air up until his departure on September 25, 2009.