CBC Northern Service (Shortwave)

CBC Northern Service (Shortwave), Montréal



The CBC Northern Service took over broadcasting and operations of ten military and volunteer-run community radio stations in Yellowknife, Fort Smith, Hay River and Aklavik in the Northwest Territories, Whitehorse, Dawson City and Watson Lake in the Yukon, Churchill, Manitoba, Fort Nelson, British Columbia, and Goose Bay, Newfoundland (Bill, I know this is technically correct, but I’d be inclined to call it Labrador in this instance.


On September 4, The CBC Northern Short Wave Service began broadcasting live across the North, including remote parts of the High Arctic. It used the facilities of Radio Canada International at Sackville, New Brunswick. Shortwave programming originated from the CBC/Radio-Canada studio facilities in Montreal.


As mail delivery in the north was rare, the Northern Service featured the mailbag program – The Northern Messenger.


The CBC had 22 different owned and rented buildings throughout the city of Montreal. All of these facilities would come under one roof when Place de Radio-Canada was completed and in use by 1972. It officially opened in 1973.


Over time, the CBC Northern Service would merge with the Armed Forces Service, becoming the CBC Northern & Armed Forces Service. It would later concentrate on northern Quebec only, becoming the CBC Northern Quebec Service.

CBC North moved from Montreal to Ottawa.


CBC North moved its regional head office from Ottawa to Yellowknife.


Due to severe budget cuts, the CBC closed Radio Canada International on June 24. The CBC Northern Quebec Service also went silent as its broadcasts came from Sackville. The CBC would apply for FM licences throughout Northern Quebec to replace the lost shortwave service. In the end, the northern service had been using an RCI 100 kW transmitter on 9,625 kHz.

The story continues elsewhere…
Effective September 1st 2019, we will only be adding new material to these station histories in exceptional circumstances. Our intent to chronicle the early days of these radio and television stations has been achieved, and many new sources and technologies, from the CRTC website to Wikipedia, and others, are now regularly providing new information in these areas.

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