Aunt Daisy used to be a household name to New Zealanders. Born in 1879, Maud Basham, known as Daisy, started work as a broadcaster on radio in the 1930's. The title of 'Aunt' was adopted when Daisy hosted a popular children's show during the Depression, which began with the ditty:
"Listen now to 2YA,
We'll sing a cheerful song.
Sing it with a spirit,
That will start the world along."
However, it was her solo half-hour morning session first aired in 1933 , that would see her popularity rise. She was renowned for her cheerful greeting of "Good morning, good morning, good morning eveybody!" was quite inimitable. The rest of the session consisted of a fast flow of handy hints, recipes and listener contributions. Aunt Daisy was also constantly in demand by manufacturers, to endorse their products on air. She would only give her seal of approval to those that were tested 'tried and true' by Daisy in her own home. A recipe book, "The Aunt Daisy Cookbook with Household Hints" was a natural result of the popularity of her show. It ran to several editions, and is still being reprinted almost 40 years after her death. Seven other of her cookery books were also published. During World War 2, Aunt Daisy took up the war effort by organising competitions that supported New Zealand's role. US sevicemen stationed in New Zealand remember her as 'Daisy the Dynamo from Down Under'. In 1956, Aunt Daisy was awarded an MBE in recognition of her services to the country.
In 1963 , Aunt Daisy died at the age of 84 years. She was still broadcasting up to a few days beforehand. Aunt Daisy is fondly remembered as someone who was practical, candid and amiable - someone who was almost part of the family.