Scrimgeour in the 1930s
Colin Graham Scrimgeour
30 January 1903
Wairoa, Hawke's Bay, New Zealand
|Died||16 January 1987 (aged 83)|
|Occupation||Reverent, radio and television broadcaster, theatre co-founder|
|Awards||King George VI Coronation Medal, Chinese Star of Friendship|
The Reverend Colin Graham Scrimgeour (30 January 1903 – 16 January 1987), also known as Uncle Scrim or Scrim, was a New Zealand Methodist Minister and broadcaster.
Born in Wairoa, Hawke's Bay, he entered the Methodist Ministry in 1923 and concentrated on social work. He was Auckland Methodist City Missioner for six years. After broadcasting from Radio Station 1ZR - run by the firm of Lewis Eady - he established the Friendly Road Broadcasting Station 1ZB in 1933, associated with the Friendly Road church (Aunt Daisy broadcast on these stations, and they supported the Labour Party). Shortly before the 1935 election on Sunday 24 November, an address by Uncle Scrim which was expected to urge listeners to vote Labour was jammed by the Post Office. The minister in charge of the P&T Department, Adam Hamilton, was blamed, although he denied responsibility.
As a close friend of Michael Joseph Savage and John A. Lee of the First Labour Government which came to power in 1935, Scrimgeour became Controller of the government-run National Commercial Broadcasting Service.
Peter Fraser – an enemy of Scrimgeour – succeeded Savage as Prime Minister after the latter's death in 1940. In the 1943 elections, Scrimgeour stood against Fraser in Wellington Central as an Independent candidate. He performed so well that Fraser (hitherto expected to win his seat comfortably) "only sneaked back on a minority vote".
Scrimgeour was suspended and then sacked in 1943. He moved to Australia, and worked in radio and television there, helping establish the Mercury Theatre in Sydney, New South Wales with Peter Finch. He also worked for a time in (Communist) China before he retired to New Zealand in 1968.
Scrimgeour was awarded the King George VI Coronation Medal in 1937 and the Chinese Star of Friendship (NZ Roll of Honour, p. 949).
Mervyn Thompson wrote a 1976 songplay about the Great Depression, Songs to Uncle Scrim.
Michael Joseph Savage was a New Zealand politician who served as the 23rd Prime Minister of New Zealand, heading the First Labour Government from 6 December 1935 until his death.
Peter Fraser was a New Zealand politician who served as the 24th Prime Minister of New Zealand from 27 March 1940 until 13 December 1949. Considered a major figure in the history of the New Zealand Labour Party, he was in office longer than any other Labour prime minister, and is to date New Zealand's fourth-longest-serving head of government.
The 1935 New Zealand general election was a nationwide vote to determine the shape of the New Zealand Parliament's 25th term. It resulted in the Labour Party's first electoral victory, with Michael Joseph Savage becoming the first Labour Prime Minister. The governing coalition, consisting of the United Party and the Reform Party, suffered a major defeat, attributed by many to their handling of the Great Depression. The year after the election, United and Reform took their coalition further, merging to form the modern National Party.
The 1943 New Zealand general election was a nationwide vote to determine the shape of the New Zealand Parliament's 27th term. With the onset of World War II, elections were initially postponed, but it was eventually decided to hold a general election in September 1943, around two years after it would normally have occurred. The election saw the governing Labour Party re-elected by a comfortable margin, although the party nevertheless lost considerable ground to the expanding National Party.
Scrim can refer to:
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Scrimgeour, Colin. "The power of radio". In Owen, Alwyn (ed.). Snapshots of the Century: 'Spectrum' covers 100 years of New Zealand history. Auckland: Tandem Press. 1998. pp. 49–62. ISBN 1-877178-306.