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Bradley Stoke Radio to apply for full-time FM licence

Posted on Monday 18th July 2011 at 6:50 am by SH (Editor)

Bradley Stoke Radio

Following a successful inaugural two-week FM broadcast in June, Bradley Stoke Community Radio Association (BSCRA) has decided to take the bold step of applying to Ofcom for a full-time FM licence.

The decision was agreed by an overwhelming majority of the 30 or so members attending last Thursday’s AGM, who had been told that Ofcom’s current window of opportunity to apply for a full-time licence was about to close and another chance would not arise for another four years.

Bradley Stoke Radio has recently resumed broadcasting on the internet, following a three-week pause after the end of the FM broadcast period that ended on 18th June. Live streams can currently be heard from 6pm to 10pm Monday to Friday and at various times on Saturday and Sunday.

Newly-elected Chair Lucy Smith said:

“This is a great challenge but very exciting, it’s not at all guaranteed that we will get the licence but we are going to give it our best shot.”

“Our members and volunteers are passionate about the community and what Bradley Stoke Radio can bring to the area.”

“Our launch and broadcast in June gave us a taste of what we can do and we are now broadcasting online at www.bradleystokeradio.org.uk but to reach more people in the community, a full-time FM licence is the next step.”

What do you think? Did you listen to Bradley Stoke Radio on FM during June. Do you think we should have a full-time radio station in Bradley Stoke? Is there anything you would like to hear on Bradley Stoke Radio?

Let Bradley Stoke Radio know at studio@bradleystokeradio.org.uk or leave a message on the station’s Facebook page or Twitter feed (@BradleyStokeFM). [Ed: Or just leave a comment at the end of this article!]

Thursday’s AGM saw Stephen Poole step down as Chair after leading the Association with great success for the past 15 months. Other voting members on the new Committee are Julian Okoye (Vice Chair), Lachlan Atcliffe (Treasurer), Elizabeth Quigley (Secretary) and Steve Seaton (Programming). They are joined by co-opted experts Andy Ward, Ruth Wiltshire, Trevor Joyes, Rachel Kelway and Matt Walker.

Lucy Smith’s overview of the station’s first FM broadcast in June

We produced two weeks of quality radio broadcasting on air between 7am and 10pm every day with a mix of talk radio and music. The programming balanced a mix of mainstream shows such as Bradley Stoke Breakfast with Steve, Lucy and Hobbit – now revealed to be Steve’s loyal but sleepy guide dog – there were community shows every morning with a mix of music and guests from different community groups, specialist music shows, chat shows, debates, festival coverage and lots and lots of fun.

The record for the most guests on one show was a close fought battle between the Community Show on Friday 16th – five guests in two hours, Winsome’s community voices – six guests in one hour, Bradley Stoke Breakfast with the Live Lounge from Bradley Stoke Community School – eleven guests plus two presenters, one technical support and Hobbit the dog. But the outright winner of this was Super Dads with Julian when there were four super dads with all their families, Paul Burling, Julian, Jenny, technician and admin support – total of 20 people in one show! Super Dads was an excellent show with involvement from families and local residents who won fantastic prizes – a real ‘feel good’ show celebrating all Dads.

The whole broadcast was a fantastic showcase of what can be achieved when a community group gets together to achieve a common goal. None of us knew each other before we joined the station and the motivation and enthusiasm from presenters has been overwhelming with some going above and beyond to ensure the station launched and remained on air and that the programming was varied, challenging and above all great to listen to. This was Bradley Stoke’s opportunity to put ourselves on the map and I think we did that in style. The broadcast was just a taste of what Bradley Stoke radio can achieve and our next FM broadcast will be bigger and better and involve even more people from our community.

Bradley Stoke Radio in their studio at the Willow Brook Centre

It’s rather sad now that there is no Bradley Stoke Radio in the car anymore but listeners can still tune in online – just go the the website and click listen live for a live stream. This week we are playing mostly music but we are working on a schedule of repeat shows during the daytime to broadcast some of the most talked about shows – the Big Debate, Community Voices and Ladies who Lunch were just a few. We actively use Twitter, Facebook and our website to reach people in the community and beyond. We have had messages from Nottingham, Newcastle, Ireland and Bermuda from people listening online this week so we are actively promoting a positive message about Bradley Stoke to the world! Just take a look at the Facebook site for some of the comments from listeners and local councillors.

In just two weeks its difficult to cover everything we wanted to and we would love more volunteers to come forward and get involved. All our presenters are volunteers and many have never presented on radio before. We would like to hear from people who have an idea for a show and would like to present or work behind the scenes. Not all our volunteers have a voice (well they do, they just don’t speak on air) and without these people we honestly would not have been on air.

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Tags: Bradley Stoke Community Radio, radio

5 Responses to “Bradley Stoke Radio to apply for full-time FM licence”

  1. Harry Hill Says:

    Broadcasting on FM seems a little archaic in this day and age, when we’re able to find the information we want or listen to the music we like at the drop of a hat via the internet.

    I did listen to a few programmes during the FM broadcast in June and was impressed by the quality but there were plenty of shows that I might have listened to but couldn’t, due to the time of broadcast being inconvenient.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if those programmes were now available “on demand” over the internet, along with some form of searchable index that would enable users to quickly find material on the topics that interest them?

  2. Will Says:

    @Harry Hill, we are looking into putting out repeat some shows out from the RSL from 4th June to the 18th June & the schedule for LIVE online show’s will be up soon on the website.

    What show’s were you interested in that you weren’t able to hear doing the FM broadcast?

  3. SH (Editor) Says:

    Am I to believe that just the one Journal reader tuned into to Bradley Stoke Radio in June? Could it be that the typical Journal reader is an internet-savvy type that can find everything he/she needs online, so has no interest in hyperlocal radio? Do you agree with Harry Hill’s preference for “on demand” access? Come on, don’t be shy, let us (and Bradley Stoke Radio) know!

  4. anon-e-mouse Says:

    Gave it a try, didn’t find it met what I like to listen to, switched over and didn’t go back.

    One question, how much public money has the radio group received in grants?

  5. SH (Editor) Says:

    @anon-e-mouse, You’ll have to take your own view on what constitutes ‘public money’ but our December 2010 article reported on grants totalling £10,400.

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