Radio Hauraki founder David Gapes dies

Radio Hauraki co-founder David Gapes has died, his family confirmed on Friday.

Starting out his career as a journalist, Gapes was part of a group who famously launched the “pirate” radio station from the sea in 1966 to get around New Zealand’s restrictive radio licencing regime.

As chairman and chief executive of Radio Hauraki, he led the station through the process of getting its radio licence, which it achieved in 1970, more than 1000 days after it launched.

Gapes was also the manager of famous Kiwi rock band Hello Sailor, and has been editor of AdMedia and Onfilm magazines founder and editor of the daily online newsletter M+AD. 

NZME Chief Audio Officer Jason Winstanley paid tribute to Gapes in a statement issued to the New Zealand Herald: “David Gapes was one of Radio Hauraki’s four founders, broadcasting for the first time from the famous ship The Tiri back in 21 November 1966. He played a huge part in the station’s rich history and our team at Radio Hauraki and across NZME send our love and deepest condolences to David’s family and friends.”

Gapes was awarded the officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to broadcasting in 2019. 

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