Close up of studio camera equipment, showing a Super 21 camera and autocue machine.

Newscaf 30th Anniversary

30 Years of News and Current Affairs at the NFSA
 Helen Tully
& Bronwyn Barnett
& Mel Bondfield

In 2018 the NFSA is celebrating 30 years of our News and Current Affairs Program (Newscaf). Learn more about Newscaf below.

Throughout the year we will revisit the big news stories that have captivated a generation of Australian TV viewers.

To kick us off we are winding back the clock to 26 January 1988 - Australia Day and the start of the Bicentenary, marking 200 years since the arrival of the First Fleet. 

On that day, current affairs program Good Morning Australia broadcast live from the lawn of Kirribilli House, giving presenters Tim Webster and Kerri-Anne Kennerley exclusive access to the Australian of the Year ceremony and a bird's eye view of celebrations on Sydney Harbour. Their reporting also covered Bicentennial events around the country, including some good old-fashioned Royal-watching. The following clips give us a glimpse of what took place on the day. 

In this first clip, singer John Farnham is bestowed Australia's top honour. He accepts the award from the previous Australian of the Year, Dick Smith, with a heartfelt and emotional speech. 

Australian of the Year Ceremony at Kirribilli House, Good Morning Australia, 26 January 1988. NFSA title: 39374. Courtesy Network Ten

The following clips from the same day feature reporting and news updates on Prince Charles and Princess Diana. The Royal couple were touring the country to attend a number of Bicentennial events and had been guests at a concert the previous night featuring some of the biggest names in Australian entertainment. 

Prince Charles and Princess Diana arrive at the Royal Bicentennial Concert on 25 January 1988, Good Morning Australia, 26 January 1988. NFSA title: 39374. Courtesy Network Ten

Prince Charles and Princess Diana in Australia for Bicentennial celebrations, Good Morning Australia, 26 January 1988. NFSA title: 39374. Courtesy Network Ten


The genesis of the Newscaf Program was the NFSA’s Slice of Life Project: Bicentennial Australia on Radio and Television. This project created a comprehensive broadcast collection of events large and small relating to the Bicentennial year.

The success of this project led to the establishment of a permanent program to acquire television news and current affairs bulletins from around Australia for every day of the last 30 years. This has only been made possible through the generous ongoing support and commitment from our Australian broadcasters across the free-to-air, subscription and government sectors:

ABC FOX Sports Australia
Imparja NBN
Network Ten Nine Network
NITV Prime7 Network
SBS Seven Network
Sky News Australia Southern Cross Austereo
WIN Network  

Through this support the NFSA has been able to build a unique collection of broadcast-quality masters of complete news bulletins. This collection is a record of local, national and international news events which also documents the history of Australia’s television industry - from analogue to digital, from terrestrial to multi-platformed IP space; to changes in production techniques and TV news and current affairs personalities.