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Trevor signs off after 43 years on air

Bundaberg radio host Trevor Leutton is set to retire after 43 years on air.
Bundaberg radio host Trevor Leutton is set to retire after 43 years on air.

Long-serving Bundaberg radio host Trevor Leutton is set to retire after 43 years on air.

Trevor shares his fondest memories over the past four decades, including having an elephant walk over him and flying across town in a hot air balloon.

What inspired you to pursue a career in radio and how did you land your first job at the Bundaberg radio station?

I fell in love with radio at around six years old trying to figure out how the person talking got into the little box on the sideboard.

I was then fortunate to meet up with many of the radio stars of the time and the love of radio just continued to grow.

I came to 4BU after spending a year in Cairns and returned to Brisbane and applied to 4BU and [the] rest is history.

Looking back on your 43 years on air, what are some of the most memorable moments or highlights of your career?

There have been numerous memories and highlights along the way, including doing a live broadcast from the XXXX hot air balloon over Bundy, lying on the circus floor and having an elephant walk over me and interviewing a Russian acrobat sitting on top of the Big Top – he by the way couldn't speak English.

How have you seen the radio industry evolve and change over the years?

The advent of computers has changed the industry so much. Gone are the days of playing singles and CDs as you did the shift.

Trevor Leutton with Graeme Conners, The Chubby Checker and Bryce Courtney.
Trevor Leutton with Graeme Conners, The Chubby Checker and Bryce Courtney.

Can you share any behind-the-scenes stories or amusing anecdotes from your time in the studio?

Throughout my career we have always, as a small group of people have, had a lot of fun as well as working hard.

Throughout your career, which interviews or interactions with listeners stand out as particularly memorable to you?

There have been many memorable moments such as being invited to meet a lady who was about to turn 101 and was a huge fan and the most delightful lady.

As far as interviews there have been hundreds but Bryce Courtney the author is one of the standouts along with Normie Rowe, Glen Shorrock and Graham Connors.

What advice would you give to aspiring radio hosts or those looking to pursue a career in broadcasting?

For those aspiring to be announcers my only advice is [to] be a radio presenter and treat the audience as you would your family as they are inviting you into their homes.

How has the community of the Bundaberg Region influenced your work as a radio host, and what role do you feel radio plays in connecting with and serving our local community?

The immediacy of radio enables people, like myself, to reach out and help and keep people informed.

Such as in the two floods, where we were on air locally 24 hours a day, keeping people up to date.

Trev at the Bundaberg Show
Trev at the Bundaberg Show.

Over four decades on air, what have been some of the biggest challenges you've faced, and how did you overcome them?

The challenges have been many and varied from musical changes and computerisation.

These are things you just have to tackle and overcome them by learning and working hard.

Are there any particular songs, segments, or features that became listener favourites over the years, and what do you think made them so popular? What was your favourite?

We all have our favourite songs etc, but as far as segments are concerned, the Secret Sound remains a favourite because of its longevity and there is money to be won.

As you prepare to retire, what do you hope your legacy will be in the Bundaberg community, and how do you plan to stay connected with your audience post-retirement?

I hope my legacy would be that I've been able to spread some joy to the audience through a bright and happy radio shift.

Trevor's last day on the local air waves will be on 28 March.

He will then retire and spend time with partner Kath and reminisce about his many incredible career achievements at Bundaberg Broadcasters.

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