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15 Jul 2014
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On the day of the 17th of March, the Sydney Story Factory (SSF) had the privilege to meet and interview former primary school teacher, music mentor, drama instructor, and radio host, Tim Bishop.

The children that attended that day’s session each had time to write questions for our guest after reading a brief biography about Tim. We each took it in turns to ask, and Tim gave clear, elaborate answers which we were all absorbed in. He had a very welcoming tone and character and expressed himself eloquently.

Tim Bishop was fairly tall and had chestnut hair with streaks of grey, tied into a bun. He had a pair of rectangular-shaped glasses, a moustache alongside with a goatee and wore earth-coloured clothing. Tim also had looped earrings in each ear. 

Tim stated that he grew up and spent his childhood/ adolescence in Albury, located near the Murray River. He enjoyed the environment of the countryside and as a result of living in such an area, obtained friendships with indigenous Australians. Unfortunately, Tim was educated differently than nowadays with teachers who endorsed Aboriginal apartheid and believed that “there were no Aboriginal people, that they had all died or that they had all gone away”. These contradictions later on profoundly impacted Tim’s life, inspiring him to form The Koori Radio Station. 

Years later, Tim wished to pursue a drama career. Since his father disapproved of this idea, he decided to move on to primary school teaching. This enabled Tim to express himself better and have more confidence once he finally chose to be a performer and radio host.

A child in the audience asked Tim “Why did you start your own radio show when you had other jobs?” Tim’s response was “Because it was fun.” Personally, I believe that this reply was typical of Tim, for he was quite bohemian. He went on to say that the inspiration to form The Koori Radio Station originated from the belief that “there was a need… for Aboriginal people to speak for themselves”. ‘Radio Redfern’ was a predecessor for Tim’s radio station. In 1988, the bicentennial of the first British settlement was celebrated (of course, not by the Aboriginal population), which gave Tim the idea to broadcast the perspectives of genuine Australians and how apartheid impacted their daily lives and even the most fundamental of rights. Not only did The Koori Radio Station air the opinions of Aborigines, but it also played music from native artists and had hosts frequently integrate some words from indigenous dialects.


Tim Bishop currently teaches how to play guitar at the Redfern Community Centre and is still a host for the Koori Radio Station. He composes songs and is “getting older”.  I found Tim’s visit very informative and inspirational. His advice could help me pursue professions I might have later on in my life.

By Yosra

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