CHFX-FM, FX 101.9, Halifax

Maritime Broadcasting System Ltd.

CHFX-FM1994101.9100,000Maritime Broadcasting System Ltd.
CHFX-FM1988101.9100,000Maritime Broadcasting System (Maclean-Hunter Ltd.)
CHFX-FM1981101.9100,000Maritime Broadcasting System (Maclean-Hunter 100%)
CHFX-FM1979101.9100,000Maritime Broadcasting System (Maclean-Hunter 90%)
CHFX-FM197096.15.,760Halifax Herald
CHFX-FM196496.15,760Halifax Herald


Col. W.C. Bill Borrett
Bill Borrett

CHNS was granted a 250 watt FM licence. CHNS-FM began broadcasting in November, owned by The Halifax Herald Ltd., owner of CHNS-AM. The FM had a power of 250 watts, using an RCA transmitter.


On February 7, CHNS began broadcasting regular AM and FM programs. CHNS-FM was now operating on 96.1 MHz with 250 watts of power.


G.J. Redmond was promoted from manager to station director.


Col. Borrett retired. The CBC recommended for approval, the change of frequency of CHNS-FM from 92.3 to 96.1 MHz.


CHNS-FM operated on 96.1 MHz with a power of 250 watts. CHNS-AM and FM were affiliated with the CBC Dominion network. Ownership of The Maritime Broadcasting Co. Ltd.: Nova Scotia Agencies Ltd. 99.3%, A. W. Robb 0.1%, W. C. Borrett 0.1%, G. M. Daley 0.1%, D. A. Morrison 0.1%, G. W. Dennis 0.1%, L. F. Daley 0.1%,  Estate of Hon W. H. Dennis 0.1%. Ownership of Nova Scotia Agencies Ltd.: A. W. Robb 0.1%, D. A. Morrison 0.1%, G. M. Daley 0.1%, G. W. Dennis 0.1%, A. D. Weldon 0.1% and Estate of Hon. W. H. Dennis 95.5%.


The Trans-Canada and Dominion networks were consolidated into a single CBC network. As a result, CHNS-AM-FM were no longer required to be affiliates.


In March, CHNS-FM was given permission to increase power from 250 watts (non-directional) with a 92 foot tower to 5,760 watts (non-directional) with a 613 foot antenna.


Power was still listed at 250 watts. CHNS-FM produced 31 and a half hours of programming every week that was separate from CHNS-AM. Graham W. Dennis was president of Martime Broadcasting Co. Ltd.


CHNS-FM became CHFX-FM on February 9. On July 17, approval was granted for the transfer of shares of Maritime Broadcasting Co. Ltd. (CHNS, CHNX, CHFX) – 538 common shares from present shareholders to L.F.D. Investments Ltd. (50.2%), Douglas A. Grant (12.4%), Weldon Douglas Coleman (12.5%), and George Charles Piercey (24.9%) with Lawrence F. Daley and Austin E. Hayes each holding one qualifgying share beneficially owned by L.F.D. Investments.


On May 31, CHFX was given permission to move from 96.1 to 101.9 MHz, increase effective radiated power from 19,500 (omnidirectional) to 100,000 watts (directional), and broadcast in stereo.


On August 31, approval was given for the sale of 90% of Maritime Broadcasting Co. Ltd. by L. F. D. Investments Ltd., Newton Holdings Ltd., The West Gore Investments Co. Ltd. and Premium Holdings Ltd. to Maclean-Hunter Ltd. Among the promises made by Maclean-Hunter: making CHFX-FM fully seperate from CHNS by ending the midnight to 6 a.m. simulcast.


Joe Bowen left CHNS-CHFX as sports director to become play-by-play announcer for the Toronto Maple Leafs radio broadcasts via Telemedia Broadcast Systems.


Hal Blackadar, vice president and general manager of CHNS and CHFX-FM was appointed to that same post at CKOY and CKBY-FM in Ottawa.


On January 11, the CRTC renewed CHFX-FM’s licence until September 30, 1985. On February 13, the CRTC approved the application by CFCF Inc. for an English-language radio network licence consisting of CFCF Montreal, CKBY-FM Ottawa, CKPE-FM Sydney and CHFX-FM Halifax for the purpose of broadcasting the hockey games of the Montreal Canadiens during the 1983-1984 to 1986-1987 National Hockey League seasons.


CHNS/CHFX-FM news director Dave MacLachlan left for Vancouver’s CKVU-TV.


CHNS/CHFX vice president and general manager Dennis O’Neil was named to Key Radio’s executive team.


CHFX and CHNS-AM moved to a brand new 10,000 square foot studios and office facility at 1313 Barrington Street (at the corner of Morris). Ward-Beck consoles were used in the new control rooms and three production studios. The newsroom equipment was almost totally new. Much of the equipment in the new facility was part of an on-going upgrade program over the past five years, so the company didn’t have to purchase new “everything”. Fuller Construction and Metcalfe Realty own the commercial-residential condo building that now houses the two radio stations. Jack Schoone was president of Maritime Broadcasting while Merv Russell was executive vice president. Some Country 101 staffers: George MacLeod (sales manager), Nancy Hitchie (promotions), Kurt Arsenault (chief engineer), Johnny Gold (program director), Ken Packham (morning announcer) and Lou LeBlanc (assistant PD and afternoon announcer). Maclean-Hunter merged its Maritime Broadcasting Co. Ltd. and Eastern Broadcasting Co. Ltd. into Maritime Broadcasting System Limited.


On June 16, CHFX-FM was given approval to increase effective radiated power from 60,800 to 100,000 watts and to increase the antenna height. CHFX had its licence renewed for only three years. The station was reprimanded for failing to meet its foreground programming commitment, exceeding the ratio of hits to non-hits, and for problems in providing acceptable logger tapes to the CRTC.


On December 19, the CRTC approved the sale of Maritime Broadcasting System Ltd. (CKDH Amherst, CHNS-AM/CHNX-SW/CHFX-FM Halifax, CKNB Campbellton, CKCW/CFQM Moncton, CFAN Newcastle, CIOK Saint John, CJCW Sussex and CFCY/CHLQ Charlottetown, to 2337017 Nova Scotia Ltd. The new owner – made up of an investor group, including Maritime Broadcasting President Mervyn Russell, along with Robert Pace and J. Gerald Godsoe. This all follows the purchase of Maclean Hunter Ltd. (Maritime’s parent) by Rogers Communications Ltd.


On December 20, CHFX was granted a power decrease, from 100,000 to 91,000 watts, and an increase in antenna height. 


Nancy Hitchie became general manager at CHFX-CHNS. She was promotions manager and had been with the stations since 1984. Mike Halverson became the new operations manager at CHFX-CHNS. He’d been with the stations for about ten years, most recently as production manager. Dennis Vautor left the company. He had been operations manager.


In December, CHFX “Country 101” became known as “FX 101.9 – Today’s Country”. There was no change in format.


Nikki Marsh was appointed Promotions Manager at FX101.9fm/HAL89.9fm. March had a Bachelor of Science Degree with an emphasis on mass communications. She also completed four internships in the professional sports industry before joining the MBS Halifax stations. The new General Sales Manager at CHNS/CHFX was Preston Pardy. His last stop was in sales management at AML Communications/Rogers Wireless.


Ian Trevor Kent died at age 46. After a successful career in the telecommunications industry in Toronto, Kent joined Maritime Broadcast Systems as a sales representative in 2001 and was then promoted to General Sales Manager at CHNS-FM/CHFX-FM.


Drive-time host Russell Mackenzie left FX 101.9 to take up a position at The Giant (CKTG-FM) in Thunder Bay. Mike Cranston, the News Director at FX101.9 announced he would retire this summer after 47 years in broadcasting. His stops along the way included CKMP Midland, CJOY Guelph, CKSO Sudbury, CHUM Toronto, CFRN Edmonton, CKSO-TV Sudbury, CHNS Halifax, Canadore College North Bay, SUN-FM Halifax and FX101.9 for the last 13 years. His father, the late W. T. Cranston, was a career broadcaster at CFAC Calgary, CJCA Edmonton and CKOC Hamilton.


On August 31, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CHFX-FM until March 31, 2012. Geoff Walsh, Music Director/announcer at Maritimes Broadcasting System Halifax the last three years, was promoted to Operations Manager at MBS Saint John.


On March 20, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CHFX-FM to August 31, 2012. On August 28, the licence was administratively renewed to December 31, 2012. On December 19, the CRTC renewed the licence for CHFX-FM to August 31, 2019.

The story continues elsewhere…
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