CBWT-DT, CBC-TV, Winnipeg

Canadian Broadcasting Corp.

StationYearChannelNetwork AffiliateOwner/Info
CBWT-DT20116.1 (27)CBCCanadian Broadcasting Corp.
CBWT-TV19546CBCCanadian Broadcasting Corp.


The CBC had opened the country’s first television stations last September – CBFT Montreal and CBLT Toronto – and now had plans for stations in Vancouver, Ottawa, Halifax and Winnipeg.

The Department of Transport came out with a national assignment of television channels for Canada. The CBC’s Winnipeg station would operate on channel 4 and could have a maximum video power of 50,000 watts.

Construction of a new station and studio project was now underway in Winnipeg at a cost of over $1,100,000.


The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation opened CBWT Winnipeg on May 31. It broadcast in English and French. CBWT was the first Estimated coverage area for the new station was about 80 miles. TV station in the Prairie provinces. The station was to have an initial three hour transmission period. Programming would be almost entirely on film and kinescope recordings since construction of studios was just now underway (June). About 60% of programming would be CBC produced. Plans for linking CBWT with the microwave relay system in Ontario and Quebec and eventually Vancouver, were now being considered.

CBWT joined the American CBS network as a secondary affiliate.


Norman Lacey was news editor/director.

40,000 square feet of land immediately surrounding the CBC building at Portage and Young was acquired by the CBC, according to J.R. Finlay, CBC director for the prairie region. The land would be used for future television developments. The existing building housed the CBWT studios and transmitter, CBW studios, network facilities and the Prairie Regional headquarters. The CBC also had a number of other buildings in the city.

Walter J. Blackburn (CFPL-TV) announced the formation of a co-operative organized to exchange TV news film among CBC and private stations. Founding members of the Canadian Television News Film Co-operative were CFPL-TV, CFQC-TV, CKCW-TV and the CBC. Membership was open to all stations.

Canadian Professional Football games, including the Grey Cup final, would be seen live from Vancouver on inter-connected Eastern stations. Delayed telecasts would be seen on all other stations on either the Sunday or Monday following the game. The 10 connected stations in the East were: CBLT, CBOT, CBMT, CHCH, CFPL, CKCO, CKLW, CKWS, CHEX, and CKVR. These stations would carry 20-26 games. Fourteen games would be seen on CKSO, CJIC and CFPA…stations not connected to the microwave. In the West, seven stations would carry kinescopes of the games to be played in Western Interprovincial Football: CBWT, CKX, CKCK, CFQC, CHCT, CFRN and CBUT.


CBWT was receiving network programs live, via microwave. In December, the CBC ordered four VTR’s for CBWT so that it could record these programs.


CBWT was operating on Channel 4 with an effective radiated power of 56,200 watts video and 33,700 watts audio.


According to Elliott-Haynes CBWT reached a total of 281,648 adult viewers every day. 

139 microwave units across Canada went into operation on July 1, carrying TV signals 3,900 miles over the longest microwave network in the world. The CBC’s Dominion Day program “Memo to Champlain” inaugurated the system. The network linked together Canada’s 40 privately owned TV stations and 8 CBC stations, providing live TV to 80% of the Canadian population between Victoria, B.C. and Sydney, N.S. Newfoundland was expected to be on the network in 1959. The CBC, in cooperation with CFRN-TV Edmonton, CKCK-TV Regina, CKLW-TV Windsor and CHSJ-TV Saint John, used the inaugural program as an electronic travelogue to visit 15 Canadian cities. The microwave network was called the Trans-Canada Skyway. For the first time, a nation wide audience would be able to watch the CBC’s federal election coverage. CBC-TV was now connected to Calgary and Edmonton in the west and the four Maritime provinces in the east. U.S. facilities would complete extension to British Columbia.

CBWT moved from channel 4 to channel 3.


French-language CBWFT signed on the air on April 24. CBWT went to full-time English programming at this time. 

Jack Wells left the CBWT sports department to become sports commentator for the new CJAY-TV. He also continued his sports work with a local newspaper and at CKY Radio.

CBWBT Flin Flon and CBWBT-1 The Pas signed on the air.


CBWBT Flin Flon and CBWBT-1 The Pas signed on the air.


CBWT swapped dial positions with sister station CBWFT on November 21. CBWT was now on channel 6. While on channel 3, CBWT had an effective radiated power of 57,800 watts video and 34,700 watts audio.


CBWBT Flin Flon (channel 10) had an effective radiated power of 6,800 watts video and 3,400 watts audio. CBWBT-1 The Pas (channel 7) had an ERP of 260 watts video and 30 watts audio.

CBWT had the following transmitters in Northwestern Ontario: CBWAT Kenora (channel 8), CBWAT-1 Dryden (channel 9), CBWAT-2 Sioux Lookout (channel 12), CBWAT-3 Fort Frances (channel 5) and CBWAT-4 Red Rock-Atikokan (channel 10).


CKX Brandon proposed to stay a CBC affiliate but sought a rebroadcaster at Brandon to handle CTV programming from Winnipeg. Both CBWT and CJAY sought Brandon rebroadcasters, which would leave CKX with no affiliation. CTV supported CJAY’s bid for a Brandon transmitter. CJAY proposed to carry full service of 113 hours weekly and be in operation in the fall of 1968. A CBC rebroadcaster would have 110 hours weekly, 77 of which would be network, or 15 hours more than CKX was carrying as a CBC affiliate. 33 hours would be programmed by CBWT with Manitoba-originated programs. The BBG denied CJAY’s entry into Brandon and would decide later on the CKX proposal to offer alternative service.


CBWT received approval for a transmitter at Grand Rapids, operating on channel 8 with transmitter power of 5 watts (directional).

On October 18, CBWBT Flin Flon, The Pas and Fisher Branch was authorized to receive live network service rather than off-the-air programming from CBWT.


CBWT was authorized to add transmitters at Leaf Rapids (channel 13 with ERP of 260 watts, directional), Nelson House (channel 11 with 5 watts, directional), South Indian Lake (channel 10, 5 watts, directional), and Cross Lake (channel 12, 5 watts, directional). Existing transmitter CBTA-TV at Lynn Lake would move to a new antenna site and receive programming directly from CBWT. Until now, it was a Frontier Coverage Package rebroadcaster, receiving network programming on a delayed basis.

CBWIT The Pas was granted a power increase (ERP) from 264 watts to 288 watts.
CBWTT Thompson received approval to move from channel 8 to channel 7 and to increase power from 5 watts to an effective radiated power of 296 watts.

The CBC was given approval to acquire CHGH-TV from Nanuk Television Inc. and to continue its operation on channel 8. Programming would be received via satellite.


When CBWT had its licence renewed, the following rebroadcast transmitters were also renewed (this list may not represent all of CBWT’s transmitters as some licences may have been renewed on other dates): Manitoba – CBWBT Flin FLon, CBWIT The Pas, CBWMT Wabowden, CBWPT Nelson House, CBWQT Leaf Rapids, CBWQT-1 South Indian Lake, CBWGT Fisher Branch, CBWOT Norway House, CBWNT Cross Lake; Ontario – CBWAT Kenora, CBWCT Fort Frances, CBWCT-1 Atikokan, CBWDT Dryden, CBWDT-1 Sioux Lookout, CBWET Red Lake, CBWJT Ear Falls. The CBC received permission to purchase CKSS-TV Dauphin (Baldy Mountain) from Yorkton Television Ltd. New rebroadcast transmitters were approved for CBWT: Easterville (Channel 11 – receiving programs from the approved Grand Rapids transmitter), Grand Rapids (channel 14), McCusker Lake (channel 10) and Moose Lake (channel 9 – receiving programming from CBWIT The Pas).


Rebroadcast transmitters were approved for CBWT at Pukatawagan (channel 11, 5 watts), Sherridan (ch 7, 1,377 watts), Cumberland House (Saskatchewan – ch 9, 5 watts), Island Falls (Saskatchewan – ch 6, 5 watts) and Pelican Narrows (Saskatchewan ch 7, 5 watts).


CBWBT-2 Pukatawagan was authorized to move to a new transmitter site.


On January 11, the CRTC renewed CBWT-TV’s licence until September 30, 1985.

CBWT installed two new NEC 10 kw transmitters. They ran in a parallel arrangement and included automatic exciter and output switching.


On May 7, the CBC received approval to delete the following transmitters from the licence of CBWFT: CBKFT Regina, CBKFT-1 Saskatoon, CBKFT-2 Prince Albert, CBKFT-3 Debden, CBKFT-4 St-Brieux, CBKFT-5 Zenon Park, CBKFT-6 Gravelbourg, CBKFT-7 Ponteix, CBKFT-8 Willow Bunch, CBKFT-10 Moose Jaw, CBKFT-11 Leoville, CBKFT-12 North Battleford. CBKFT and the above rebroadcast transmitters would continue operation under a separate licence, with
French-language programming originating from studios located in Regina.

Sandra Lewis was a news anchor at CBWT.


On March 18, CBWFT received approval to increase the effective radiated power for CBWFT-11 Fort Frances (Ontario) from 10,000 watts to 12,500 watts.


Judy Waytiuk left CBWT after 12 years for CKND-TV. At CBC, she was Canada’s first female TV news director.


Slawko Klymkiw left CBWT where he had been executive producer of the supper series “24 Hours”. He moved to CBLT in Toronto.


When CBWT had its licence renewed, it was noted that the station had 47 rebroadcast transmitters. It added that its operating budget had been reduced by more than 40% and that it had lost some 100 staff positions over the last five years. In terms of regularly-scheduled local programming, CBWT concentrated
on producing successful news and information programs. As a result of changes in the network schedule, CBWT’s late night news programming was reduced by 30 minutes weekly. The station had, however, increased its spending on news production, despite overall reductions in program budgets. CBWT now broadcast 9 hours 20 minutes of news programming weekly.


Ed Russenholt died at the age of 100. He was nearing retirement age with Manitoba Hydro when television came to the province in 1954. He joined CBWT as the station’s first weatherman and kept the job for eight years.

On May 14, the licence for CBWYT Mafeking was amended, by changing the source of programs received part-time from CBWT Winnipeg and part-time from Western Manitoba Broadcasters Limited, to programs received full-time from CBWT Winnipeg.


On December 9, CBWT was given approval to increase the power of CBWHT Grand Rapids from a transmitter power of 5 watts to an effective radiated power of 203 watts. This would improve the existing coverage at Grand Rapids and also provide a strong feed signal to the CBC transmitter CBWHT-2 at Easterville.


On November 6, CBWT was authorized to increase the effective radiated power of the transmitter CBWIT The Pas, from 288 watts to 720 watts. The transmitter was unreliable and would be replaced. The increase in power in conjuction with the transmitter’s replacement would improve the signal quality in the outlying
communities surrounding The Pas.


As of 2000, CBWT operated the following transmitters: Manitoba – CHFC-TV Churchill, CBWNT Cross Lake, CBWHT-2 Easterville, CBWGT-2 Fairford, CBWGT Fisher Branch, CBWBT Flin Flon, CBWLT Gillam, CBWXT Gods Lake Narrows, CBWHT-1 Grand Rapids, CBWHT Grand Rapids, CBWGT-1 Jackhead, CBWT-2 Lac du Bonnet, CBWQT Leaf Rapids, CBWZT Little Grand Rapids,
CBWRT Lynn Lake, CBWYT Mafeking, CBWGT-3 Manigotagan, CBWUT McCusker Lake, CBWIT-1 Moose Lake, CBWPT Nelson House, CBWOT Norway House, CBWVT Oxford House, CBWT-3 Piney, CBWBT-1 Pukatawagan, CBWKT Snow Lake, CBWQT-1 South Indian Lake, CBWIT The Pas, CBWTT
Thompson, CBWWT Waasagomach and CBWMT Wabowden. Saskatchewan – CBWIT-2 Cumberland House, CBWBT-2 Island Falls, and CBWBT-3 Pelican Narrows. Ontario – CBWCT-1 Atikokan, CBWT-1 Big Trout Lake, CBWDT Dryden, CBWJT Ear Falls, CBWCT Fort Frances, CBWDT-2 Ignace, CBWAT
Kenora, CBWDT-4 Osnaburgh, CBWDT-5 Pickle Lake, CBWDT-6 Pikangikum, CBWET Red Lake, CBWDT-7 Sandy Lake, CBWDT-3 Savant Lake, CBWDT-1 Sioux Lookout and CBWAT-1 Sioux Narrows.


On September 17, CBWT was authorized to delete the transmitter CBWHT-1 Grand Rapids. Because CBWHT Grand Rapids (channel 8) could not reach Easterville and cover the Grand Rapids area at the same time, the CBC had been using CBWHT-1 (channel 15) as an UHF relay transmitter to extend CBWHT’s signal. The CBC replaced CBWHT’s transmitter and antenna system. With the new facilities, the CBC was able to design a pattern that enabled channel 8 to cover both Easterville and the Grand Rapids area. CBWHT-1 was no longer needed.


On May 12 the CRTC renewed CBWT’s licence, including the following rebroadcast transmitters: CBWBT Flin Flon, CBWBT-1 Pukatawagan, CBWGT Fisher Branch, CBWGT-1 Jackhead, CBWGT-2 Fairford, CBWGT-3 Manigotagan, CBWHT Grand Rapids, CBWHT-2 Easterville, CBWIT The Pas, CBWIT-1 Moose Lake, CBWKT Snow Lake, CBWLT Gillam, CBWMT Wabowden, CBWNT Cross Lake, CBWOT Norway House, CBWPT Nelson House, CBWQT Leaf Rapids, CBWQT-1 South Indian Lake, CBWRT Lynn Lake, CBWT-2 Lac du Bonnet, CBWT-3 Piney, CBWTT Thompson, CBWUT McCusker Lake, CBWVT Oxford House, CBWWT Waasagomach, CBWXT Gods Lake Narrows, CBWYT Mafeking, CBWZT Little Grand Rapids and CHFC-TV Churchill. Ontario: CBWAT Kenora, CBWAT-1 Sioux Narrows, CBWCT Fort Frances, CBWCT-1 Atikokan, CBWDT Dryden, CBWDT-1 Sioux Lookout, CBWDT-2 Ignace, CBWDT-3 Savant Lake, CBWDT-4 Osnaburgh, CBWDT-5 Pickle Lake, CBWDT-6 Pikangikum, CBWDT-7 Sandy Lake, CBWET Red Lake, CBWJT Ear Falls and CBWT-1 Big Trout Lake. Saskatchewan: CBWBT-2 Island Falls, CBWBT-3 Pelican Narrows and CBWIT-2 Cumberland House.


CBWFT, Manitoba’s only local French TV station, marked its 50th anniversary. The Radio-Canada station, on the air since April 24, 1960, was the first French-language TV station is Western Canada.

On July 29, the CRTC approved the application by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to amend the licence for CBWT Winnipeg by adding the radiocommunication distribution undertaking CBWST Dauphin as a rebroadcasting transmitter for CBWT. The licensee stated that CBWST could no longer receive a feed from its former television affiliate, CKX-TV Brandon, since CKX-TV ceased operations on 2 October 2009. The CBC stated that, as a result of the approval granted in this decision, it would relinquish its current RDU licence for CBWST. However, given that this RDU licence expires 31 August 2010, the Commission would simply let the licence lapse.

On July 30, the CRTC approved the applications by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to amend the broadcasting licences for CBWT Winnipeg and CBMT Montréal in order for CBWT to replace CBMT as the source of programming broadcast by the rebroadcasting transmitters CBDE-TV Brochet, CBDI-TV Poplar River and CBDG-TV Shamattawa. The licensee stated that the proposed licence amendments would allow it to better serve the populations of Brochet, Poplar River and Shamattawa. As a result of the approval granted in this decision, the Commission revoked the authority granted to CBMT to broadcast programming on the rebroadcasting transmitters CBDE-TV, CBDI-TV and CBDG-TV.

On August 9, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence of CBWT and its transmitters to March 31, 2011.

On November 17, the CRTC approved the application by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation to amend the licence for CBWT-TV to add a post-transition digital transmitter in order to serve the population of Winnipeg. The transmitter would operate on channel 27 with an effective radiated power of 42,000 watts (non-directional antenna with an effective height of antenna above average terrain of 138.6 metres).


On March 29, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence for CBWT-TV until August 31, 2012. The Commission noted that it did not intend to renew authorizations for full-power analog transmitters operating in the mandatory markets or on channels 52 to 69 outside the mandatory markets beyond August 31, 2011. By that time, the Commission expected licensees to have the necessary authority to broadcast in digital. In addition, the Commission imposed the following condition of licence on stations that operated in mandatory markets or on channels 52 to 69 outside the mandatory markets: Unless otherwise authorized by the Commission, the licensee shall not transmit analog television signals after 31 August 2011 in mandatory markets designated as such by the Commission in Broadcasting Regulatory Policy 2011-184 or transmit television signals on channels 52 to 69. The CRTC also noted that pursuant to Broadcasting Regulatory Policy 2010-69, it did not intend to renew authorizations to operate transitional digital transmitters included in these licences, beyond August 31, 2011.

August 31 was the deadline for the conversion of analog to digital for television stations in mandatory markets, but CBWT was not expected to change over until September 30. It would move from analog channel 6 to digital channel 27 (virtual channel of 6.1).


On July 17, the CRTC announced that effective 1 August 2012, it would revoke the broadcasting licences for CBIT Sydney and CBKST Saskatoon and their transmitters. The Commission also approved the request to amend the licences for 23 English- and French-language television stations operated by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in order that reference to all analog transmitters be deleted. The CBC planned to cease operation of all these transmitters on 31 July 2012. The licences for the following transmitters were removed from the CBWT-DT licence: [Show content] MORE…

On August 9, the CRTC administratively renewed the licence of CBWT-DT until August 31, 2013.

Carl Karp, the CBC Area Executive Producer, New Programming Initiatives for the Prairie Region, retired. Karp, located in Winnipeg, had been with the CBC for 27 years.


On May 28, the CRTC renewed CBWT-DT’s licence for a five year term, to August 31, 2018.


John Robertson died at age 79. He started in broadcasting in 1973, working at CJAD and CFCF as an open line host. In 1977 he moved to CBWT-TV.


Peter Kaczmarek, 88, passed away on January 20. He became a set designer for CBC Winnipeg in 1955, creating sets for TV and game shows.

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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