Offshore Radio News

The latest offshore radio related news by reporters from Europe and the Middle East, updated whenever there is a new item. Please feel free to contribute via


Wednesday April 30th 2008

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Peter Timmerman reporting:

Big L antenne site

Ik heb een april foto shoot op gezet. Ongetwijfeld wel interessant voor veel van je bezoekers.
De directe en permanente link is:


Sunday April 27th 2008

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Svenn Martinsen reporting:

Kelvin Davies says:
Timor Challenger
Challenger, sm
IMO 6402901
999 grt; built 1964
Panama flag
Owner & Manager; Van Der Linden/Vinckier, Schiedam, Netherlands
Officially classified as a "Standby/Safety Vessel"
Previous names:
Timor Challenger, Viking Challenger, Brittania Challenger, Brittania de Hoop, De Hoop
Thanks to my fellow traveller from Basingstoke, Tom, for the info.
This ship, as mentioned by Tom
has been alongside the old US Army jetty in Hythe, Southampton for some time.
It was being used to make a film about the 1960s era pirate radio ship, Radio Caroline which operated off the UK coast in the North Sea.
The radio masts have been added as part of the make over for the film, along with the bogus name "Radio Rock".
Leaving Southampton for Portland 22 April 2008

Comment from Svenn is that this actually was a "real" radio ship broadcasting Christian services and weather reports on 2201 and 2316 kHz in the 120 meter band Shortwave as late as the 70s, besides doing utility transmissions and listening on 2182.
I have heard it! But only once.
If you also care to read about one earlier "Radio Rock", please go to my recently updated essay on WBMJ San Juan, PR 1190:

Attachment is from WRTH 1974!


Svenn Martinsen
Radio Historian

Hospitaalkerkschip De Hoop


Saturday April 19th 2008

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Hans Knot reporting from the international radio scene:

Read Hans Knot's April report HERE.


Sunday April 13th 2008

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The number above is the E-Bay item number for a T-Shirt we got everyone to sign at Pirate BBC Essex last August 2007 in Harwich.

We are auctioning this shirt over the next ten days in the "Pirate Radio" section of E-Bay.

We have decided to give any proceeds jointly to MacMillan Nurses and the Stroke Association. MacMillan Nurses was the prefered choice of Johnnie Walker, and in light of the sad passing of Chris Cary, we decided to split any proceeds with the Stroke Association.

Further details are listed in the E-Bay description....

Chris & Jackie Dannatt / Pirate Memories & Flashback '67 - Lincolnshire UK

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Vormgeving Radio 1 en Radio 4 op CD


Opnieuw komt bijzondere radiovormgeving op CD. Op zaterdag 12 april brengt het “Genootschap radiojingles en –tunes” in eigen beheer de CD “Joosten en Kuitenbrouwer” uit. Daarop de zo goed als complete vormgeving (jingles en tunes) van Radio 1 en Radio 4 van de Publieke Omroep. Het Genootschap komt daarmee tegemoet aan verzoeken van luisteraars van deze zenders.


De speciaal gecomponeerde tunes en jingles zijn allemaal gemaakt door het Utrechtse componistenduo Jeroen Kuitenbrouwer en Bernhard Joosten. Zij vormen sinds vorig jaar het bedrijf Joosten en Kuitenbrouwer, dat is gespecialiseerd in vormgeving voor radio en TV.



Naast de vormgeving van Radio 1 en Radio 4 bevat de CD ook complete jinglepakketten van RTL FM en de Wereldomroep, en bonustracks met jingles voor 3FM en het NOS Radionieuws. Ook staat er op de CD een exclusief interview met Jeroen Kuitenbrouwer waarin hij uitleg geeft over de Radio 1 Journaal tune.



De CD is de eerste in een nieuwe serie die het “Genootschap radiojingles en –tunes” gaat beginnen: Jingle Adventures. De komende tijd volgen meer CD’s in die serie. Eerder bracht het “Genootschap radiojingles en –tunes” in eigen beheer al CD’s uit met jingles van Veronica, TROS, AVRO, NOS Radio Tour de France. Ook werden CD’s uitgegeven met de geschiedenis van de zeezender-jingle en met beroemde radiotunes. 


Het Genootschap

Het “Genootschap radiojingles en –tunes” is het grootste particuliere jingle-archief van Nederland. Het archief bevat ruim 2500 uur aan digitale radio-jingles en radio-tunes en gaat terug tot de jaren 20 van de vorige eeuw. Het Genootschap radiojingles en –tunes werkt samen met vrijwel alle omroepen (publiek en commercieel), de grootste jinglebedrijven van Nederland en de Verenigde Staten, Beeld & Geluid, en met talloze radiotechnici, omroepmedewerkers, jingleverzamelaars en diskjockeys.



De CD kost 15 Euro inclusief verzendkosten en is vanaf 12 april te koop. Niet in de winkel, maar uitsluitend via het bestelformulier dat vanaf 12 april op de Shoppagina van Jingleweb oproepbaar is. Jingleweb is de website van het “Genootschap radiojingles en –tunes”:

Uit de opbrengst van de CD worden andere activiteiten van het Genootschap bekostigd, zoals het Nationaal Archief met radiojingles en radiotunes.


Friday April 4th 2008

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The "Unofficial" Radio Report

Since my last report there has been a lot happening in the world of radio, but thankfully this time I do not have to bring you news of so many deaths, although even one is too many.
I reported last time that Chris Cary, more commonly known as DJ Spangles Muldoon, had been badly affected by a second stroke whilst working in Tenerife. Sadly Chris passed away on 29th February. His wife Sybil had just returned from England, after arranging to repatriate Chris back to the UK, when she was called to the hospital, only to find he had passed away. How cruel was that? Chris was buried in Esher, Surrey on the 19th March, a date which some say was fitting as it was the anniversary of the sinking of the Mi Amigo. Amongst those who attended the funeral were Peter Moore, Ronan O’Reilly, Dick Palmer, Elija Fan Den Berg, Robb Eden, Peter Chicago, Johnnie Walker, Roger Day, Tony Prince, John Clarke and representing the Ross Revenge restoration crew were Peter Clayton and Alan Beech. Peter Moore, Radio Caroline’s Station Manager thought that Johnnie Walker’s tribute was the most fitting, and caused the BBC Radio 2 presenter to succumb to emotion at the end of his speech. After the service the mourners were invited to a venue in Cobham. If you would like to read more about Chris’s life you may wish to visit the following website and to give money to the Chris Cary Memorial fund, which has been set up to raise stoke awareness, the banking details are:
Nat West Bank.
Account No. 56536062.
Sort Code 60 08 04

Easter came early this year on Friday 21st to Monday 24th March, and Radio Caroline celebrated its 44th Birthday with four days of broadcasting “live” from the Ross Revenge in Tilbury. This was announced a month beforehand (21st February) by Pat Edison and was the idea of Bob Lawrence. Unfortunately the ship was not accessible to supporters and listeners, only to the DJ’s, all of which had worked on the Mi Amigo in the 1970’s, but pictures were available via the studio webcam. The time warp back 30 years was not only a reunion, but a major membership drive and request for donations.

Throughout the Easter broadcast prizes of Ipod Shuffles, Diskey CD’s and Radiohead “sold out” concert tickets were given away to new members or anyone who made a donation of £30 or more. Also, all the aforementioned will receive a new Tony Allan CD produced by Elija Fan Den Berg and Mark Dezzani.

The Mi Amigo veterans were Bob Lawrence, Mike Stevens. Brian Martin, Cliff Osbourne, Martin Fisher, Roger Mathews, Jeremy Chartham and the three “Cloggies” Ad Roberts (who started the broadcasts at 06.00 hours on Good Friday), Dick Verheul and Marc Jacobs. It’s a pity others such as Stuart Russell and Johnny Lewis were not able to take part, as they are probably more familiar to listeners of that era, than the likes of Cliff Osbourne, who apparently only did about 6 hours on air hence I missed him first time around. It would have been fun to hear Stuart Russell and Marc Jacobs larking around on air together like they used to.

For me, the highlight was hearing Mike Stevens, who has apparently not done a radio programme for 18 years, yet he did a great job and sounded the same as he did when he worked on the lady. Mike did the final show, which ended at Midnight on Easter Monday, with contributions from the other DJ’s who were still on board, including a last minute one from Buzzby, who was so choked with emotion he could hardly speak when he decided to try to do so. A fantastic, very enjoyable and well organised four days, which I believe was financially successful. Well done to everyone concerned. I was in Jersey on the final day, but thanks to my Worldspace receiver and a South facing room in the hotel my wife and I were staying in, I was able to listen in and make recording on my Sony Mini Disk Recorder.

Whilst my wife Jill and I were in Jersey for the Easter week, travelling around in a hire car, I listened to BBC Radio Jersey and also Jersey 103, the islands commercial station. The latter was not too bad, with at times some good music being played and certainly sounding better than most of the “Better Music Mix” stations here in England. I’m not sure who own them.

It seems that Big L has been running into financial difficulties, but despite this they continue on all broadcasting platforms, including the expensive AM. Randal Lee Rose left on the 29th February stating on air that the station had run into financial troubles and he had not been paid for two months. A few weeks later Newsreader Chris Opperman left for the same reason. Read more about this on the Friends of Big L forum at Randall has since returned, so presumable he has been paid the money he was owed, but in the meantime the news can be read by anyone. There was in fact a new girl newsreader that started on the 18th February during the Adrian John Breakfast Show, but I’m not sure if she is still with the station.

Other radio stations in difficulty are Planet Rock. The rock station’s future seems uncertain, because on the 11th February owner GCap announced they were to pull out of DAB to cut costs and close the group’s remaining digital only stations Planet Rock and The Jazz. It will be a shame if Planet Rock does disappear, because have some good programmes and presenters, such as Rick Wakeman and Nick Abbot (yes he does shows for them as well as LBC), and unlike in their early days and the other rock stations (e.g. Virgin Classic Rock and the UK Arrow), they do not just play classic rock tracks. It seems that the big boys of radio feel that the consumer uptake of digital has been slow and costs of broadcasting on the DAB platform are too high. It may also be something to do with the poor choice of radio stations and quality of the transmissions! Other DAB stations such as One Word and Prime Time have disappeared. However, at the end of last month it was reported that GCap have accepted a £375m buy out by their rival the Global Radio Group. It doesn’t seem that long since the GWR and the Capital Groups merged for a massive £710m, although when reading up on this I discovered that was actually back in 2005 and from that moment they apparently had a torrid time of it. What a shame! So what fate awaits Planet Rock under the new ownership?

One of the casualties of the GWR and Capital merger was Tony Blackburn. However he seems to have dropped on his feet again. He was and still does a weekly four hour show on Sunday on the Kent local radio network of KMFM from 16.00 hours. However, he now also does the weekend breakfast show on London’s Smooth Radio (Saturday and Sunday 07.00 to 10.00 hours) and on Sunday 9th March he started to do a new Sunday Lunch show on BBC Radio London. The Smooth and Radio London programmes are “live”, but the one on KMFM is recorded. So if you are so inclined, you could spend you Sunday’s listening to Tony for a total of nine hours!!!! I have to admit that I did do so once and almost one month later I am still recovering!

It was nice to hear Sharon Leighton’s (wife of the late Rob Leighton) Top 15 repeated on Saturday 1st March when due the technical problems the “Cloggies” program could not be broadcast. Sharon picked a nice selection of music in the two hour show, which was originally broadcast over two mornings during the same week. By the way, Tim Charles has now permanently taken over Rob’s old Thursday evening slot. I think he fits in well here and did on many occasions cover for Rob in his absence.

Sadly Mark Dezzani has been having problems again with his programmes not being aired on Radio Caroline at the proper dates and times. In fact on Sunday 2nd March the wrong show went out and this was quite embarrassing because it was a repeat of the previous week and contained get well messages for Chris Cary, who had died a few days earlier. Mark left the station before due to such issues and unless something is sorted we may have lost him again.

Here's some good news to end on. It has been announced that Red Sands Radio will be returning in July with broadcasts from the World War 2 Army Fort of the same name. Go to the following website for news from one of this year’s sponsors and Programme Director Bob Le-Roi.

On a final note Radio Caroline want their listeners to take part in a survey and at the same time list their Top 5 Albums. The link for this is:
Your Top 5’s will be used to compile a forthcoming countdown of the Radio Caroline Listeners Top Albums. Hurry on line now as the closing date is the 17th April. This is your chance to have a say in how Radio Caroline should sound!

Until next time,


Steve Szmidt, Hawkinge, Kent, England.

(Please add one hour to the above quote times for your local German time)


Saturday March 22nd 2008

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Easter 2008 Birthday Celebrations

The “legendary” Radio Caroline is marking its 44th birthday this Easter weekend with four days of special programming live from the radio ship Ross Revenge.

Pictures taken by Vincent Schriel can be found here.

Webcam   Stream 1   Stream 2   Relays   RECORDINGS

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Svenn Martinsen reporting:

Happy Easter to you all!
For those of you interested in radio airchecks, here are two for download from the radio vessel Olga Patricia/Laissez Faire(today a Reedville, VA fishing vessel) broadcasting as Swinging Radio England, 1322 kHz, 50 kW Continental transmitter from October 1966. The recordings are from various radio show collectors sources, and are for radio history documentation, sharing and enjoyment for fans and collectors. After download they blend perfectly with iTunes which is the recommended jukebox to play them.
First, two versions of:
1a Radio England Int Waters 1322 Sun 161066 1153- cuts_1315-1323 1.mp3
BBSpree Light Program(me)/Solid Gold Sunday
Bob Klingeman(Boom Boom Brannigan)/John Ross-Barnard, also featuring Chuck Blair, Johnny Dark(Harry Putnam) etc.
1b Radio England Int Waters 1322 Sun 161066 1153-__1259-1316 1.mp3
BBSpree Light Program(me)/Solid Gold Sunday
Bob Klingeman(Boom Boom Brannigan)/John Ross-Barnard, also featuring Chuck Blair, Johnny Dark(Harry Putnam) etc.
2 Radio England Int Waters 1322 221066 0155-0325 1.mp3
Midnight Early Show 
Bruce Wayne/John Ross-Barnard(news updates nighttime because of Aberfan tragedy on October 21st)
Also featuring Bill Berry etc. Bill "Boss" Berry's famous TOH "Legal" ID is featured and here is the only known preserved copy of "Boss" Berry's "Return of the Magnificent 227" promo to the movie music of Elmer Bernstein!
Plus a promo for Swinging Radio Holland!
These recordings are from just after the announcement (presumably October 13th) that SRE would be changing format and going Dutch, "Swinging Radio Holland". 
Please note: the Bob Klingeman Sunday 16th of October recording when JRB read the news is usually branded as one from September, 1966.
Anyone with an up-to-date email of David Bennett("Bruce Wayne")?

Transcripts here:

If you have recordings of the "5 of the Olga Patricia", please notify me.
all the best and warmest regards
Svenn in Norway


Wednesday March 19th 2008

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Peter Moore writing (taken from the Radio Caroline FanMailingList):

Hi all,

I have just returned from Chris's funeral, which took place at Esher in Surrey this morning. Chris was not a close friend, but I thought I ought to attend on behalf of the station. Even before reaching the Church, I was captured by
Ronan and when we joined the other waiting mourners it was clear that my presence, or lack thereof, would hardly have been noticed. From our ships crew I noted Peter Clayton and Alan Beech, while as
for Chris's old Caroline colleagues I spotted Dick Palmer, Elija van den Berg, Robb Eden, Peter Chicago and Roger Day.There were of course many others attending, from Chris's time in Ireland or in Luxembourg and many family and friends. In the church we were first provided with audio of various of Chris's air checks and then two of his family, rather bravely, presented readings, with Alex Cary giving his personal feelings of
his huge love and respect for his father.

Three more old colleagues, Johnnie Walker, Tony Prince and John Clarke then paid their tributes and while each man obviously held Chris in high regard, Johnnie Walkers contribution was the most fitting, causing him to succumb to emotion just at the end of his short speech. After the service, mourners were invited to gather at a venue in Cobham and, having noticed so many people by this time that I would liked to have spoken with, I would have attended had it not been for the fact that Ronan had volunteered me to drive him back to London.

A memorial fund has been set up for Chris, who as you may know suffered a stroke some years ago, but survived and then sadly suffered another stroke that ultimately proved fatal.

The details of the fund for those wishing to contribute are :

The Chris Cary Memorial Fund to raise stroke awareness.
The Nat West Bank.
Account No. 56536062.
Sort Code 60 08 04

I am sure we will duplicate this information on the Caroline web site in due course.

I have of course only just remembered that this day in 1980 was the day that the old Mi Amigo sank.


Peter Moore

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In der Zeitschrift "Good Times - Music from the 60s to the 80s" (Heft 2, April/Mai 2008) findet man einen interessanten Übersichts- bzw. Einführungsartikel zum Thema Seesender.


Saturday March 15th 2008

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A NEW BOOK - NOW AVAILABLE - from Offshore Echo's

The Story of Captain Leonard Frank Plugge and the International Broadcasting Company.

Lenny Plugge founded the International Broadcasting Company in 1930. Its first location was at 11 Hallam Street in central London, practically next door to where the BBC's new headquarters, Broadcasting House was under construction. Plugge was not short of cheek and it was that aspect of him that contributed so much to his success and to the development of English language commercial radio beamed from continental stations like Radios Paris, Post Parisien, and especially Radio Normandy. Plugge’s broadcasting ventures made him a millionaire, but his personal life was less successful. This book tells the full story: his tours through Europe in the 1920s in cars equipped with huge radios and transmitters fitted with frame aerials, the development of the IBC, his ten years as an MP, his marriage break-down and family tragedies of his later life. Some of the famous names involved in the story are Jacqueline Bouvier (later Kennedy), Lady Docker, Annigoni, Sarah Churchill, Noel Coward, Hugh Gaitskill, Mick Jagger, April Ashley and Michael X. The 215 page book is complete with many illustrations.

Softcover £12.95 UK / £15.95 Europe
Hardcover £22.50 UK / £25.50 Europe



Web pages now updated, with more pictures, audio and documentary material. The Radio Normandy story has pages in both English and French language.


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Vincent Schriel reporting:

Radio Caroline Easter 2008 Birthday Celebrations

Tijdens het paasweekend van 2008 zal Radio Caroline uitzenden vanuit Tilbury, vanaf de Ross Revenge. De crew van de MV Mi Amigo uit de tweede helft van de jaren 70 zullen de uitzendingen verzorgen. Aanwezig zijn o.a. Roger Mathews, Bob Lawrence, Cliff Osbourne, Martin Fisher, Brian Martin, Mike Stevens en Jeremy Chartham. Uit Nederland zullen aanwezig zijn Ad Roberts, Dick Verheul en Kees Borrell.

De uitzendingen vanaf de Ross Revenge starten op Goede Vrijdag om 06:00 uur en gaan door tot 2e Paasdag 24:00 uur. De uitzendingen zijn te volgen via satelliet, internet en kortegolf.

Het (voorlopige) schema voor het Paasweekend:

Good Friday, March 21st
00:00 – Non Stop Caroline
06:00 – Ad Roberts
08:00 – Roger Mathews
10:00 – Martin Fisher
12:00 – Mike Stevens
14:00 – Brian Martin
16:00 – Dick Verheul
18:00 – Bob Lawrence
21:00 – Cliff Osbourne

Saturday, March 22nd
00:00 – Dick Verheul
03:00 – Jeremy Chartham
06:00 – Roger Mathews
09:00 – Bob Lawrence
12:00 – Cliff Osbourne
15:00 – Cloggie Time with Ad, Dick & Kees
18:00 – Mike Stevens
21:00 – Martin Fisher

Easter Sunday, March 23rd
00:00 – Brian Martin
03:00 – Jeremy Chartham
06:00 – Calvary Chapel
10:00 – Roger Mathews
12:00 – Ad Roberts
15:00 – Martin Fisher
18:00 – Dick Verheul
21:00 – Mike Stevens

Easter Monday, March 24th
00:00 – Martin Fisher
03:00 – Jeremy Chartham
06:00 – Cliff Osbourne
09:00 – Brian Martin
12:00 – Martin Fisher
15:00 – Bob Lawrence
18:00 – Roger Mathews
21:00 – Mike Stevens

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Van 15 maart tot en met 27 april RADIO NOORDZEE INTERNATIONAAL WEKEN op webradio192


In april is het alweer 4 jaar geleden dat op het toenmalige kabelstation Radio 192 de RNI-week werd uitgezonden.
Wij van Webradio 192 gaan de komende weken wederom aandacht besteden aan RNI. Dat betekent dat het programma “The Internet Where It’s Good Again”, waar normaliter diverse zeezenders aan bod komen, de komende weken gereserveerd zijn voor Radio Noordzee.

Op Goede vrijdag 21 maart zullen we een dag lang oude RNI-programma’s uitzenden. (zie schema verderop)

Destijds in 2004 zijn er diverse interviews uitgezonden die wij zullen gaan herhalen.
Interviews die Ferry Eden maakte met Hans Hogendoorn, Nico Steenbergen, Marc van Amstel, Eduard Huis in’t Veld en Peter Jager.

Prachtige verhalen, niet alleen over het maken van radio, maar ook over het dagelijkse leven aan boord van de Mebo 2 en leuke anekdotes.
Via Webradio 192 zullen deze interviews nog een keer te beluisteren zijn in het programma “The Internet Where It’s Good Again”.
Deze uitzendingen zullen ook bol staan van de muziek, jingles en reclamespots uit de RNI periode. Vijf afleveringen van twee uur waarin de zeezender en zeker de RNI liefhebbers nog eens hun hart kunnen ophalen en terug kunnen gaan naar die roemruchte periode uit de jaren ‘70.

En ter afsluiting van deze weken Radio Noordzee zenden we de RNI-Revival nog een keer uit, zoals uitgezonden destijds in de RNI-week in 2004. Met als gasten o.a. John de Mol Sr., Nico Steenbergen, Pieter Damave en Eduard Huis in’t Veld.

Het RNI schema op Webradio 192 ziet er als volgt uit:

De Geschiedenis van Radio Noordzee door Leo van de Goot:
Zaterdag 15 maart tussen 18.00-20.00 uur
(herhaling op zondag 16 maart tussen 14.00 en 16.00 uur)

RNI-dag op Goede Vrijdag:
Vrijdag 21 maart met de volgende oude Radio Noordzee programma’s:
06.00-07.00 Peter Holland (19-06-1973)
07.00-08.00 Ted Bouwens (31-08-1974)
08.00-09.00 Nico Steenbergen (03-10-1973)
09.00-10.00 Alfred Lagarde – een uur top 100 van 1972 (26-12-1972)
10.00-11.00 Joost den Draaier (02-11-1971)
11.00-12.00 Dik Voormekaarshow (16-09-1973)

12.00-13.00 Ferry Maat - RNI Top 50 deel 1 (22-06-1974)
13.00-14.00 Ferry Maat - RNI Top 50 deel 2 (22-06-1974)
14.00-15.00 Ferry Maat - RNI Top 50 deel 3 (22-06-1974)
15.00-16.00 Tony Berk - Prijsbewust (28-08-1974)
16.00-17.00 Leo vd Goot - Driemaster (16-09-1971)
17.00-18.00 Leo vd Goot - Driemaster (26-08-1974)

18.00-19.00 Gerard Smit - Buitengaats (16-07-1974)
19.00-20.00 Hans ten Hoge – Herry met Ferry (10-09-1973)

Engelse Service:
20.00-21.00 Brian McKenzie (24-06-1972)
21.00-22.00 Don Allen (16-02-1974)
22.00-23.00 Één na laatste uur Engelse service op 220 mtr. (30-08-1974)
23.00-24.00 Laatste uur Engelse service op 220 mtr. (30-08-1974)

Interview met Hans Hogendoorn:
Zaterdag 22 maart tussen 18.00-20.00 uur
(herhaling op zondag 23 maart tussen 14.00 en 16.00 uur)

Interview met Nico Steenbergen:
Zaterdag 29 maart tussen 18.00-20.00 uur
(herhaling op zondag 30 maart tussen 14.00 en 16.00 uur)

Interview met Marc van Amstell:
Zaterdag 5 april tussen 18.00-20.00 uur
(herhaling op zondag 6 april tussen 14.00 en 16.00 uur)

Interview met Eduard Huis in’t Veld:
Zaterdag 12 april tussen 18.00-20.00 uur
(herhaling op zondag 13 april tussen 14.00 en 16.00 uur)

Interview met Peter Jager:
Zaterdag 19 april tussen 18.00-20.00 uur
(herhaling op zondag 20 april tussen 14.00 en 16.00 uur)

Zaterdag 26 april tussen 18.00-21.00 uur
(herhaling op zondag 27 april tussen 14.00 en 17.00 uur)

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Bob Le-Roi reporting:

Press Release 2

ICOM joins the Radio Revolution

Herne Bay based Radio Communication Company, ICOM UK become a ‘Select Sponsor Partner’ of Red Sands Radio. Established in 1974 in Herne Bay, Kent. ICOM (UK) Ltd is privately owned & is sole UK/Ireland importer for ICOM Inc. Osaka Japan. A comprehensive portfolio of radio transceiver, receiver, navigation & computer products is maintained by a staff of 39 to suit the consumer, commercial, radio-amateur, marine & aviation markets. Equipment is available in fixed-base, vehicle-mobile & handheld formats to suit a wide range of specifications & applications.

ICOM Managing Director Phil Hadler said “We very much enjoyed the programmes of Red Sands Radio last year, it was a breathe of fresh air hearing something different that was topical & local that played a wide range of music. We as a specialist organisation realised how difficult it was to pull off the initiative & are pleased to be supporting the project hereon”.

Red Sands Radio Programme Director Bob Le-Roi replied, “ICOM were amazing they called us up out of the blue & maintained a reassuring link throughout our broadcasts. ICOM have a mutual interest in what were doing & we’re delighted they’re aboard. We’re offering ICOM facilities to conduct experimental World-Wide ‘Ham Radio Broadcasts’ during this summers transmission period”.

Radio Red Sands launches in early July 2008. For more information telephone 07961 601 893.

Bob Le-Roi - Programme Director


Saturday March 1st 2008

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Martin van der Ven writing:

Chris Cary (Spangles Muldoon) 5th October 1946 - 29th February 2008

I feel deeply sorry to report the sad news of Chris Cary's death following a second stroke some weeks ago.

As a young teenager being 15 years young, I first heard "Spangles Muldoon" with his "Lunchtime Loonabout" programme on RNI just after the station had returned to the Dutch coast at the end of July in 1970. Spangles immediately fascinated me as I strongly imagined he was a tough-minded guy with a lot of humour who consequently committed himself to the idea of "free radio". On a Saturday afternoon in August - whilst on holiday in Italy along with my parents and my younger brothers - I listened to RNI on shortwave (31 and 49 metre band) and followed the dramatic events when Kees Manders tried to hijack the Mebo II with Spangles and several colleagues on board the ship. And with much sorrow I listened to Spangles' fairwell programme in September 1970. During the summer of 1972, he suddenly reappeared on the station, soon leaving to take part in the reincarnation of Radio Caroline from the MV Mi Amigo. I soon realised that Spangles played an important role within the new Caroline "organisation", but unfortunately he could be heard not too often as a deejay on the station...

More than three decades later, in October 2005, I met Chris for the very first time when he took part at the "RNI-in-1970 Reunion" on the Amsterdam Radio Day. I saw him again at the "Celebration of Offshore Radio" in London in August 2007. And then in November 2007, we were so pleased that he took part in the "Radio Caroline resisting the MOA" panel which was held during the recent Radio Day.

I have compiled several pictures as a decent help to bear Chris in our remembrance.

For messages of condolence please click here.

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Swanèt Vink reporting:

De Radio Van Toen – interview met Ian Damon


Op de Radiodag van 10 november 2007 heeft Luuk Meuwese een gesprek gehad met Ian Damon, oud-discjockey van o.a. Radio London en Capitol Radio. Met meer dan 50 jaar ervaring in het radiomaken had Ian heel wat te vertellen.


Zo spreekt hij over zijn verblijf op de MV Galaxy, over zijn bijnaam The Wombat en zijn vaste  begroeting: 'Hi there, you there!' Ook zijn huidige programma op zondagavond bij BigL komt ter sprake.


Het interview met Ian Damon wordt in 2 delen uitgezonden in De Radio Van Toen.

De muziek komt uit Ian's persoonlijke Top 20.


Het programma De Radio Van Toen wordt wekelijks gemaakt bij Radio Nunspeet en wordt ook uitgezonden door Radio Popular en RTW Waddinxveen.

Presentatie Luuk Meuwese, productie Swanèt Vink.



Uitzending deel 1 (deel 2 volgt een week later):
Radio Nunspeet (105.9FM) –

zaterdag 1 maart 21-23 uur en donderdag 6 maart 15-17 uur.


Radio Waddinxveen (105.8FM) –

zaterdag 1 maart 10-12 uur en dinsdag 4 maart 12-14 uur.


Radio Popular

vrijdag 7 maart 16-18 uur en donderdag 13 maart 21-23 uur.

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Look Boden reporting:

Vanaf 2 maart Zal Radio 227 op de zondagavond tussen 20.00 en 22.00 uur 28 uitzendingen van de "Laissez Faire Story" herhalen. Deze uitzendingen begonnen op 16 oktober 2004. Het zijn programma's over de piratenschepen en -forten uit de 60-er en 70-er jaren.
De productie en presentatie is in handen van Look Boden.
De gehele geschiedenis van de "Laissez Faire" is te lezen via

Sven Martinsen, de Noorse documentairemaker over het zendschip de "Laissez Faire" heeft dit schip na ruim 40 jaar weten te traceren.
Op dit schip is in 1966 "Radio Dolfijn" geboren en was in 1967 de eerste Nederlandse popzender "Radio 227" gevestigd.
Lees het verslag op onder het kopje "HISTORIE- herinneringen".

Vrijdag 22 februari j.l. was een bijzondere dag. Radio 227 had de wereldpremière van de song over de Olga Patricia wat de feitelijke naam van de Laissez Faire is.
Het lied werd geschreven door Ex Swinging Radio England DJ Rick Randall en gezongen door collega Keith "Keefers" Hampshire op muziek van Gordon Lightfoot. De vraag (welke dus volgens bovenstaand stukje opgelost is) was waar de Olga Patricia eigenlijk gebleven was nadat het dienst had gedaan als zendschip voor SRE, Britain Radio, Radio Dolfijn, Radio 227 en Radio 355.
Where the Heck is the Olga Patricia?

There once was a ship that was destined to be
A famous, mysterious ship of the sea
It sailed from a port in the south(ern) US
To take part in a plan to invade, can you guess?

A storm the first night sent a sound and a fright
Through the hull with a crash and a shudder
When the mast it did fall with antennae and all
As the ship rocked about on her rudder

So the trip took a turn as the world would then learn
And made stops for repairs in a hurry
First the Azores and then to Lisbon to mend
As the boss paid the bills with a worry

Portugal, it was nice and the crew once or twice
Toured the town and drank down with the best
It took two weeks, or three, to get back out to sea
And head north --- was it east, south or west?

The day finally came when the wind and the rain
In the North Sea were met by those bad boys
There were Yanks, and some Blokes, and a Aussie with jokes
Would would soon fill the air with their noise

Radio Caroline, and well, yet another – Big “L”
That were just off the Felixstowe sea shore
When the “Boss Jocks” arrived with their fast talk and jive
They would soon play their music, and “much more”

This ship it was true, with not one sound, but two
But not destined to be there for too long
For on land was a fight, about what’s wrong and what’s right
And the law would soon silence their sea-song

With the Maritime Act it would simply be fact
That the days we remember are past us
The American sound that was heard in London town
Would die out, though the memory would last us

Here we gather again to look back with a grin
To a time that we faintly remember
A tale that was born with the sound of a horn
On a ship that is vaguely familiar

So here’s to the lady we loved and we knew
Was her name...Bonnie, or Jenny?
Oh yeah, I recall, it was Olga, ya’ll
A friend who is gone with our memory

For now nowhere we see is our old friend at sea
There are stories we just can not follow
They weave plots with no clues, like a clown with no shoes
CIA...Laissez Faire...all sound hollow

What happened when the fun, it was all said and done
And the boat and her crew they did sever
Did she sail off in fright to mysterious night
Or sink to the bottom forever?

There is no end that we know to this story, and so
The truth may never to told her
How the real story ends, or if destiny bends
Around Olga as we all grow older

Let’s call out the Air Force, the Navy, and then
Let’s call out the Army militia
We’ve all got to know, before we all go
Where the Heck, is the Olga Patricia

(c) Richard Crandall (Rick Randall) 2006. Recorded by Keith ”Keefers” Hampshire 2006.
Based on ”The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald” by Gordon Lightfoot, (c) Reprise Records 1976.


Thursday February 28th 2008

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Andy Sennitt reporting:

Radio Waddenzee to become offshore broadcaster for three days

Dutch regional commercial station Radio Waddenzee is planning to become a real offshore broadcaster for three days on 1-3 May 2008. The station will be anchoring its lightship Jenni Baynton close to the uninhabited island of Griend, off the coast between Harlingen and Terschelling. The anchorage is on the route of a boat race that takes place on 2 May, and the event will be covered live on Radio Waddenzee.

The station broadcasts on 1602 kHz with a power of 1 kW, and has two transmitters - one on the ship, and the other on land. For the special three-day broadcast, the shipborne transmitter will be used.


Herry Kuipers reporting:

Radio Waddenzee kiest het ruime sop!

Radio Waddenzee gaat met het radiolichtschip een paar dagen buitengaats en vanaf zee uitzenden. Op dinsdag 29 april wordt de Jenni Baynton voor anker gelegd ter hoogte van het waddeneiland Griend (niet bewoond vogeleiland tussen Harlingen en Terschelling). De rechtstreekse uitzendingen vanaf het schip zijn op donderdag 1 mei (Hemelvaart), vrijdag 2 mei en zaterdag 3 mei. In de uitzending van 2 mei is er extra aandacht voor de befaamde sloepenrace Harlingen - Terschelling. Het radiolichtschip ligt voor anker langs de route. Op zondag 4 mei keert het schip terug in de Harlinger haven.
Foto (gemaakt door Geert Kroes)? Klik hier.

Bezoek aan schip op zee mogelijk!
Op zaterdag 3 mei kunnen belangstellenden de Jenni Baynton bezoeken. Hiervoor zal een veerboot vanaf Harlingen naar het schip varen (en uiteraard weer terug). Exact tijdstip en de aan deze reis verbonden kosten zijn nog niet bekend. Je kunt al wel je belangstelling kenbaar maken door een e-mail te sturen. Zodra de exacte gegevens bekend zijn stuurt Radio Waddenzee dan een email retour met de mogelijkheid om te boeken. Wie nu al zijn belangstelling kenbaar maakt (zonder verplichting) krijgt echter wel voorrang bij het boeken. Het is uiteraard niet uitgesloten dat het aantal belangstellenden groter is dan het aantal beschikbare plaatsen voor deze bijzondere trip. Belangstelling? Stuur een mail. Via deze site melden we verdere ontwikkelingen over dit bijzondere radiogebeuren.

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Bob Le-Roi reporting:

Press Release 1

Tower takes a tumble

The severe gales over recent weeks have taken their toll at the Red Sands Fort. Situated seven nautical miles out from Whitstable in the Thames Estuary, the Forts are exposed to the full onslaught of winds from every direction. So hardly a surprise that the transmitter antenna installed on the Red Sands Fort last summer has taken a tumble.

Said radio engineer & overall Project Redsand Chairman Robin Adcroft “We’re disappointed it’s fallen but in reality it was a tempory antenna which we didn’t expect to survive the winter”. He continued, “We have a new and permanent replacement ready to ship out and erect for this and future Red Sands Radio broadcasts”.

Radio Red Sands plans a return to the air in early July 2008.

For more information telephone 07961 601 893.

Bob Le-Roi - Programme Director


Saturday February 23rd 2008

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Svenn Martinsen reporting:

At last we seem to have come nearer the solution around the many questions surrounding the "The Radio Rose of Texas", the "Olga Patricia", as my research in this matter has had significant progress.
The ship name in Lloyd's Directory descending from what was earlier the "Laissez Faire" has been found in Reedville, VA, USA where it is the name of one of a fleet of 10-11 menhaden fishing ships owned by Omega Protein Inc., mostly sister ships of the radio ship, but they all are much, much converted!
It is the "Earl J Conrad jr.", call letters WYZ9562.

I am pleased that one of my many correspondents, Ben Miller of, found the story so far to be so interesting he wrote a magazine article about it.
Still Serving after All These Years
How World War II ships came to catch Chesapeake menhaden
a Bay Weekly exclusive
Volume 16, Issue 7 - February 14 - February 20, 2008

It was published some days ago, and I hope it will bring forward even more information.
I am very pleased of Ben's well-written and interesting article.

But there are challenges here, and great care must be taken, as in the past something may have happened re. the identity of the Conrad(only a printing error of Lloyds? They did at least one proven mistake, placing Reedville in Ohio, something that have led many to believe that the former Olga sailed on the Great Lakes):


1. Lloyds links the EJC to the radio ship Laissez Faire.

2. Lloyds links the USS Deal FS-263/AG-131/AKL-2 to a radio ship called the Olga Princess (this name cannot be documented anywhere, except that in an 80s interview Don Pierson referred to the "Olga Princess" as a sister of the Olga Patricia).

3. On a better resolution pic from Miami, March, 1966 than I had previously, on the port side of the bow of the then soon-to-be radio ship Olga Patricia the old USN designation AG-131 is distinguishable.

4. It is well established that in 1966, the radio ship Olga Patricia changed name to Laissez Faire, seemingly because it needed re-registration (National Archives document). That first happened in Panama with the call letters HPUY (retained 2nd time) and then the ship was registered in Puerto Cortes, Honduras, unknown call letters (1967?).

Another difficult question is what happened to the ship before Zapata Haynie (now Omega) bought it and converted it. It was then Akvarius or Akuarius according to Lloyds. As is well known, the late Pierce Langford III of Abilene, TX (he was close to Sen. John Tower) in late 1966 increased gradually his interest in the Swinging Radio England etc. venture, and by March, 1967 he was in control, leading to the March 16th, 1967 relaunch. After the return of the ship to Miami in September 1967, Continental went to court to regain the two transmitters. They were successful, and as you all know, they are now in Swaziland, Africa, one of them(1322 kHz) is still on the air, now on 1170 kHz. However, Langford was awarded the ship. Two of the former "Boss Jocks" incidentially visited the ship in Biscayne late 1969, to find two months later it had left. They are the last witnesses to have seen it before it turned up in Reedville many years later. So what happened in all those years? What kind of use of the former radio ship should we look for?

If you have, or run across more information, please communicate with me.
Please note: Omega Protein Inc. run an entirely different business than radio and I am sure they have other things to do than answering queries of radio people.
I can almost guarentee there is no heritage left on the EJC, even if it is eventually proven to be the "Olga Patricia"!

If so, we may say as we often do:"the world is smaller than we think", as the Chesapeake Bay where the Conrad now sails also rooms the island that gave the first name to the "Olga Patricia", the Deal!

Fact is we do not as yet have the actual proof that the EJC IS the Olga Patricia, and there's always more to the story to be found out.
That mix-up of an "Olga Princess" and Olga Patricia at Lloyds is utterly strange!
This may be complicated as Don Pierson in his time also considered sister ships Star 5-0 and the Titan for the radio business.

In closing, I hope soon to have more information from the Swaziland site that until recently housed Liberty Radio, this station was using the 845 kHz Britain Radio/355 transmitter on 1377 kHz.

Finally, a little amusing detail not connected to the above: Did you know the Olga "met" what was to be the Mi Amigo in Galveston, TX in 1963?

I'll keep you posted!

Svenn in Norway

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Hans Knot reporting from the international radio scene:

Read Hans Knot's February report HERE.


Thursday February 21st 2008

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Juul Geleick and Ad Bouman reporting:


Op zaterdag 19 April wordt er door de Stichting Norderney in Hotel Lapershoek, net als vorig jaar, een Veronicadag georganiseerd.

Op deze Veronicadag kun je weer heel wat beleven, voor de snuffelaars is er een groot aanbod van typische Veronica spullen. Zoals; Singles, Veronica LP’s , Veronica CD’s, Posters, T-shirts, Originele Stickers, Een Fotoboek (Optioneel), Jingles, Tunes en Rariteiten. Oude Veronica Programma’s op CD's en ook de Top40/Veronica Quiz gepresenteerd door Erik de Zwart. Aanmelden voor de Quiz kun je hier doen. Loslopende oud-Veronica medewerkers kun je zomaar tegenkomen.

De toegang bedraagt 5 euro en je bent hartelijk welkom van 10.30 uur tot 18.00 uur in Hotel Lapershoek, Utrechtseweg 16 te Hilversum. NS Station Sportpark is op 200 meter afstand.

Schrijf je hier in voor de Top40/Veronica Quiz met Erik de Zwart. De Quiz wordt zo rond 15.00 uur gehouden. Er is een maximum aantal deelnemers. Je krijgt bericht wanneer je bent ingeschreven.

Ad Bouman en Juul Geleick

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Dick Verheul reporting:

Easter 2008 Birthday Celebrations

The “legendary” Radio Caroline is marking its 44th birthday this Easter weekend with four days of special programming live from the radio ship Ross Revenge.

The weekend will be special for several reasons.

Firstly, the station has survived the intervention of governments, groundings, a sinking, and an officially sanctioned armed raid to reach this milestone. It is a remarkable achievement and a real triumph over adversity.

Secondly, the M.V. Ross Revenge was in a very sorry state after being salvaged off the Goodwin Sands. The hard work and dedication of the volunteer restoration crew has brought her back to excellent condition, something of which they are justly proud. It is our intention that the ship will be on public view again soon.

Finally, the broadcast itself is going to be undertaken by veteran presenters from Caroline’s second ship, the M.V. Mi Amigo, which sank in March 1980. All of the on-air team for the Easter weekend served on board between 1977 and 1980 and this is the first time they will have come together as a working team for 30 years.

Current Caroline presenters Roger Mathews, Bob Lawrence, Cliff Osbourne, and Martin Fisher will be joined by Brian Martin and Mike Stevens. Several colleagues from Holland including current Caroline presenters Ad Roberts, Marc Jacobs and Dick Verheul will also be part of the team. Other former crew members from the Mi Amigo Kees Borrell and Jeremy Chartham will also be on board.

This special birthday broadcast will start at 6am on Good Friday and run until midnight on Easter Monday. Listeners will also be able to watch some of the action via on board webcams.

Caroline’s Station Manager, Peter Moore said. “44 years ago Radio Caroline first appeared and changed the face of radio in this country. We always like to do something a bit special for our birthday and I’m really pleased that so many Presenters from our past are able to spare the time to make this Easter extra special.”


Friday February 8th 2008

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The "Unofficial" Radio Report

A belated New Year to you all. I intentionally left out the word “happy”, because quite frankly 2008 has so far been very sad and continues to be so, even as we go into the second month. It seams that every time I switch on the radio or go on line I hear or read that someone has died or is seriously ill.

Only a few days into the year it was reported that the DJ known as Dave Dennis (the Double D) on the 60’s offshore radio station Radio London had died just before Christmas. His real name was Neil Spence and one of the biggest credits to his name was being Programme Controller of UBN (United Biscuits Network), which is were many great UK DJ’s, such as Roger Scott, Adrian Love and Graham Dene served their apprenticeship. Roger Day told listeners of his BBC local evening show that he worked for UBN during his reign. Neil went on to be Programme Controller at Radio Trent, before becoming Head of Presentation at the now defunct National Broadcasting School. Sadly after the school closed, Neil went into recluse, despite many offers of employment and invitations to reunions etc.

On the evening of Thursday 10th January I was listening to Andrew Austin when he announced that Rod Allen the lead singer of the Fortunes had died suddenly that day He did a tribute featuring several of the band records, including Radio Caroline’s own theme tune “Caroline”. The following evening Roger Day played a couple of Fortunes tracks on his BBC in the South “Instant Jukebox” show. There is a book of condolence on the group’s official website I believe Rod was only 63 years old. Many Radio Caroline fans have fond memories of Rod when with the Fortunes he appeared at the station’s 40th Birthday Party at the Riga Bar in Southend.

One week later when travelling home from work on the evening of the 17th January, Roger Day announced that another of his mates had passed away. This time it was the Radio presenter Rob Leighton. Roger played Poco’s “Rose of Cimarron” as a tribute to him. I had to pull over at the new service station at Junction 11 of the M20 in Kent as I was so shocked and I had to talk to someone. I phoned my mate John Gleeson in Birmingham, who I knew was a big fan of Rob and his Imagination show. He had not heard the news and was as shocked as I. When I arrived home I tuned into Caroline and Stuart Russell/Nigel Harris was sitting in for Andrew Austin, under what must have been difficult circumstances, receiving many emails from grieving listeners. The station had quickly put up on it’s website a moving tribute from Station Manager Peter Moore and also a book of condolence. My email to Stuart was put up on and I wrote a personal email to Rob’s wife Sharon. At 21.00 hours, mainly thanks to the hard work of John Brocks, there was a three hour programme featuring non stop music, including some of Rob favourites, with occasional comments from John and messages from fellow presenters.

I was not able to go to the Rob’s funeral in Staffordshire on Saturday 26th January, but I will be sending a cheque to Radio Caroline’s Archway Road payable to Sharon’s chosen charity, which is the NACC (The National Association for Crohn's and Colitis). Please feel free to do the same. Rob had for a long time been privately suffering from Crohn disease and to cover this up, other reasons were given for the absence of his Thursday evening Imagination and Friday breakfast shows. Rob seemed a really nice guy from my cyber friendship with him and he certainly believed in Loving Awareness. His “Imagination” programme was not to every ones liking, because it featured a lot of obscure music. Mark Stafford fittingly thought of Rob as Radio Caroline own John Peel. It is apparent from the response to the news of his death that Rob was well liked and respected and will be sadly missed.

Today (8th) was the funeral of John Deane, one of Radio Caroline’s biggest fans. John was only 43 years old and suffered from Cerebral Palsy. He apparently drank a lot and it was this that was the cause of his death. I think that the last time I met John was some years ago on a visit to the Ross Revenge when it was a Queenborough on the Isle of Sheppey. Yes that long ago! I remember that John fell over when he was stepping off the tender onto the jetty. I think he miss judged his footing. He certainly gave us all a scare, but was OK. We went for a drink and then I gave him a lift to the train station. If you want to read more about John, there is a detailed report written by John Patrick on the website.

May Neil (Dave), Rod, Rob and John Rest in Peace.

The final piece of bad news that I received was as recent as last night and Jim Ross mentioned it this afternoon on Caroline. Chris Cary, a former DJ on stations such as Radio Caroline, Luxembourg and his own Radio Nova (Ireland) has suffered a second brain hemorrhage. His first one paralyzed one side of his body and this latest has done the same to his other side. Chris works in Tenerife, where he is currently in hospital. Last year he attended the Offshore Radio Convention in London and the Radio Day in Amsterdam. I hope Chris will make a speedy recovery from this latest setback to his health and my good wishes go out to him and his wife Sybil. I am sorry to be the bearer of such a lot of depressing news. I will now try to give you more positive stories.

Thanks to Peter Timmerman in Holland for confirming that Big L transmitter has not moved closer to England, so that is not the reason for the improved reception that I reported last time. Peter, who lives 20 km from the transmitter, which he states is sited on a dyke, also told me that he does the non stop hour on Saturday mornings from 02.00 to 3.00 hours GMT on Radio Seagull. Unfortunately 1602 AM is not coming in clear enough in Kent and I do not have access to Internet Radio in my rented accommodation, so I cannot comment on what he describes is a different approach to non stop radio. By the way, Big L still has a relatively good signal on 1395 AM and I am often able to listen with acceptable reception all the way from Northampton to Folkestone. It’s probably not good enough to someone who is used to the quality of FM stereo, but we Anoraks are more forgiving and dedicated. That might be why RAJAR have just reported in their December 2007 Quarterly Statistics that Big L’s listeners stay tuned for longer. Last Friday (1st Feb), Adrian John on the breakfast show proudly announced that their audience listens for an average 25.1 hours per week, longer than any other radio station. RAJAR also reported in the last week that 8.1 million people listen to Internet Radio every week. I think this trend will continue as the quality of normal radio deteriorates!

I complained last time that Bob Lawrence’s show on Caroline had been put back by an hour on Saturday night/Sunday Morning. Well now there is a new additional time slot of Friday night 18.00 to 20.00 hours, when the show is given its first airing, so I can listen then if I not out drinking or travelling back to Northampton at the time. Thanks Mr Radio Caroline Programme Controller!

The week before last I went to Milan on business and whilst there scanned the FM band on my Sony Ericsson Mobile Phone. Interestingly, amongst the congestion of radio stations I found that they have a Virgin Radio, which is actually better (more rocky) than the UK version, which now seems to feature too much party music since Suggs (from Madness) joined the station. I presume he is still on there. Also, when travelling around London Stansted Airport I found XFM, on FM, which I thought was good and certainly the best I could find on my car radio at the time. I heard the station aga
in one Sunday night when travelling back from Northampton and they had a good heavy rock show.

I told you last time that Barry Crompton’s Top 5 would be featured on the 60’s and 70’s show in January. It was in fact played by Clive Garrard on Tuesday 15th at 22.00 hours. I went to see Barry that night in the Strobe Park nursing home, Herne, Kent, to make sure the Sky Box in the TV lounge was tuned in to Caroline and to be company for Barry and his friend Brian (see picture, which as you can see, the EPG was correct that night) whist they listened. A member of the nursing staff joined us later. Barry and Brian were both delighted to hear their names mentioned and hear the Top 5 played. Thanks to Clive and Roland, his helper that evening, for bringing happiness into the nursing home that night. I have made a CD copies for Barry and his family to listen to. The former will, I am sure, be listening over and over. By the way, Nick Wythe, a friend of mine from Ashford and I took Barry out for a meal and drink as planned on the Saturday before Christmas. The restaurant we went to was the Spice Master, in Sturry near Canterbury in Kent. We were made very welcome and both the food and service we received was excellent.

Commencing 5th January 2008, Saturdays on Caroline became the day of the three Mi Amigo’s: Johnny Lewis, Stuart Russell and in rotation one of the Dutch Cloggies. The following Saturday (12th) Stuart Russell, by special request of Johnny attempted to change his name back to Nigel Harris, as the lad was getting confused, because on the KM-FM station that they both work for, he is used to calling him Nigel. However the Russell name is proving hard to shake off and even last night Andrew Austin informed listeners that Stuart Russell was back this Saturday morning.

Radio Seagull recently had an exodus of Radio Caroline presenters leave, due to an ultimatum they received from Station Manager Peter Moore. Seagull took advantage of an offer to have their night time programmes re-broadcast on 105FM in Tenerife, but because the same radio station is re-broadcasting a station called Radio Caroline International during the day and they in turn are relaying Radio Seagull via their website, Peter Moore saw a conflict of interest for the real Radio Caroline, if his presenters continued to be associated with Seagull. Consequently Mark Stafford, Pandora, Dave Foster, Roger Mathews and Martin Turner have left the Dutch broadcaster, but Martin Smith decided to resign from Caroline and stay at Seagull. No surprise there as this is not the first time Smith has had a problem with Moore’s management of the station. The last time was over Smith giving too much exposure to a certain singer, whose name escapes me right now. This situation has unfortunately driven a wedge between the two Station Managers, Sietse Brouwer (Seagull) and Peter Moore and probably another one between Stevie Gordon and the latter.

When Martin Smith left and Rob Leighton went up to that place in the Sky, this gave John Brocks and Dave Foster the opportunity to do the weekday Caroline breakfast show on Monday, Tuesday and Friday. Tony Paul is still there on Wednesday and Thursday. Brox and Fozzie take it in turns and the new show features the new “Serial Competition”, were listeners have to identify three very short, back to back, snippets of records and the first one to do so win’s a prize, currently a single CD of his/her choice. Dave no longer does Sunday afternoons on Caroline and was replaced by Clive Garrard.

Listeners to Big L may remember that on Sunday evening’s there used to be a show called the “Elvis Hour” presented by Todd Slaughter. Well guess what? From next Tuesday (12th) you will hear him on Radio Caroline from 17.00 to 18.00 hours, preceding the Good Rocking Tonight and the 60’s and 70’s shows. Quite a compliment to what has become an established oldies night. Todd has been running the Elvis Presley Fan Club of Great Britain for over 40 years, so he is well qualified for the job. More details at

I was listening to Rosko on Big L one Saturday whilst at home in Northampton and Caroline, one of my twin daughters was in the room and after a while asked me why the bloke on the radio talked in such a strange way!

Sticking with the family for a moment, we had a new dog just before Christmas. He is a Cavalier King Charles, the breed we had last time, who we had from a rescue centre in Essex. He is 4 years old and called Oliver (Ollie for short). He did come with the name Hocus Pocus, and despite thinking the record of that name by Focus is brilliant, but as he wasn’t responding to the name and it didn’t suit him either, we decided to change it. Ollie is settling in well under the circumstances, albeit with some minor mishaps from time to time, but these are becoming less frequent. I’ll dedicate my next report to him if he gets over these altogether!

Finally, don’t forget to purchase your Radio Caroline Jelly Sticky Pad for the dash board of your car and you will no longer loose your mobile, keys, loose change etc. Details are on the home page of

Until next time, when I hope I will not be reporting any more deaths,


Steve Szmidt, Hawkinge, Kent, England.

(Please add one hour to the above quote times for your local German time)


Sunday February 3rd 2008

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Sad news is reaching us from Hans Knot in the Netherlands. According to Hans' source, Chris Cary (Spangles Muldoon) has suffered a second apoplectic stroke whilst working in Tenerife. He is now being treated in a hospital.

Triest nieuws rond Chris Carey
ZA 2 FEBR: Chris Carey ondermeer bekend als deejay op Radio Caroline en Radio Luxembourg en als directeur eigenaar van NOVA Radio in Dublin, heeft andermaal een hersenbloeding gekregen terwijl hij aan het werk was op het eiland Tenerife. Enkele jaren geleden had hij een hersenbloeding die een kant van zijn lichaam deels verlamde. De nieuwe bloeding heeft precies de andere kant van zijn lichaam aangetast. Hij is opgenomen in het lokale ziekenhuis op Tenerife alwaar hij wordt bijgestaan door zijn partner Sybil. Recentelijk was Chris nog één van de gasten die op de Internationale Radio Dag in Amsterdam medepanellid was aangaande ‘Caroline International na de invoering van de Marine Offences Act’. Chris kwam voor het eerst aan boord van Radio Caroline in de nacht dat de wet van kracht was geworden, 15 augustus 1967. In 1972 was hij één van de verantwoordelijken voor de terugkeer van Radio Caroline, na bijna 4,5 jaar van stilte.

Photo: Chris Cary at the recent International Radio Day in Amsterdam in November last year along with Johnnie Walker
Copyright: Martin van der Ven


Sunday January 27th 2008

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Mary Payne reporting:

Due to overwhelming listener demand, the Big L Fab Forties return to Oldies Project on Sunday January 27th, starting all over again from the beginning in January 1965. In conjunction with Radio London, every Sunday from 1100 to 1300 UK time, Oldies Project will broadcast a Fab 40 from the same week 43 years ago. From 1300, you can hear Kees Brinkerink's feature 'Forty Years Ago' – two hours of new UK releases and hits from exactly that week, in 1968. We expect the Oldies Project back-up server to be fully utilised!

The chart and 'Forty Years Ago' are both repeated weekly, the following Wednesday from 1800 UK time.

We hope you enjoy listening - while looking at the chart on the Radio London website!


Saturday January 19th 2008

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Svenn Martinsen reporting:

[HCDX] John Catlett named RFE/RL Chief Operating Officer
(January 17th, 2008)

John N Catlett has been named Chief Operating Officer of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Mr Catlett has been involved in broadcasting production, sales and marketing, engineering and management for over 35 years. He managed FM radio stations for CBS in Chicago and New York City.

Since 1984 he has worked outside the US to develop new stations in the North Sea, Ireland, and London, and the Metromedia International stations in Eastern Europe and Russia. He was the final manager of the legendary Radio Luxembourg, and he introduced the first private radio stations to India in 2001 for Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation.

In recent years, Mr Catlett has advised radio and television stations working with Internews in Russia, Indonesia and Afghanistan and with private companies in India and China. He has taught advertising, marketing and media management at the business school of the University of Connecticut and for the MBA program of the University of the Sacred Heart in Luxembourg.

A graduate of Princeton University, where he remains a trustee of the student-operated radio station, he also holds an MBA degree from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. Mr Catlett will take up his new duties early in February.


Friday January 18th 2008

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Hans Knot reporting from the international radio scene:

Read Hans Knot's January report HERE.


Saturday January 12th 2008

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Thomas Kolbe reporting:

We are very glad to inform you about our new radio show "Rudis Radio Review" with the music from the ships and many infos about the offshore radio stations and their djs from the 60s on. This show is hosted by Rudi Bittner, the man with the best vinyl archive I've ever seen in my life...

Our station is called "Der Sonnensender", our livestreams can be heard in 128 kbps bandwith quality and Rudis Radio Review is on air on Wednesdays at 10 pm CET and Sundays at 6 pm CET.

We would be very happy about some promotion on your homepage !


Friday December 21st 2007

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The "Unofficial" Radio Report

My reports used to concentrate on Radio Caroline and featured on the website. Martin, the webmaster of both the German Radio Caroline and this web site, agreed to move me here, to make way for official reports from the Caroline organisation. I note that the last update was one written by Mark Stafford dated the 6th April this year. Come on guys, where are the promised regular “official” reports that were supposed to be replacing my unofficial ones?

My wife Jill and I had the pleasure of being in Germany at the end of November to experience the city of Cologne and its Christmas Markets, six in total, including one on a cruise ship and the medieval one (which we both thought was disappointing and was the only outdoor market that we had to pay an admission fee). Due to our hotel been in close proximity of the Cathedral, we were woken by the bells ringing for ten minutes at 07.00 hours each morning and boy were they loud! We went to the top of the cathedral tower, climbing 509 steps and saw the offending bells on the way up. The many cologne beers we sampled were great, as were the very popular brew houses and the traditional German food that they served.

I also went to Malta at the beginning of December for a two day business trip. Whilst travelling on the bus back to the rental car pick up at Heathrow Airport I heard the familiar voice of Nick Abbot on the drivers’ radio. I discovered that he is now doing a weekday evening show on London’s LBC, so as soon as I got into my hire car I tuned in and despite this being on FM I got a good signal all the way to Ashford in Kent, and then it broke up. Not bad for a London station, although I have picked up others as far as this, such as Magic. I found Nick as entertaining and funny as ever. I have been trying to think what was the last station that I heard him on and am not sure if it was Virgin or possibly Talk Sport? Whilst on the subject of London radio stations, I notice that many of the Pirates take advantage of RDS technology, by sending out data not only with the station name, but other information such as phone numbers and web site addresses. How Pirate Radio has moved on since my day!

Unfortunately my daughters, like many others, failed to get me tickets for the Led Zeppelin reunion concert at the O2 Arena in London for my birthday. However Radio Caroline’s Pandora got press passes for her and Station Manager Peter Moore and they managed to blag their way into the arena itself and saw the whole gig, whilst other members of the media watched back stage on a small TV screen. You can read Pandora and Peter’s account of this memorable evening on the official web site.

I went to a concert myself a few days before. This was Jeff Wayne’s “War of the Worlds” at the NEC, Birmingham. I had previously seen the concert on DVD (worth having), but the visual effects and sound were even better live. Thanks to my daughters Caroline, Sarah and Rhiannon for buying me the tickets for my birthday. However, a word of warning about the promoter they bought the tickets from, which was via the official War of the Worlds website. The company, Trinity Street Direct stated that the tickets would be in blocks and rows closer to the stage than what we were actually sent, without any prior notification and these only arrived a few days before the gig, which was worrying. Their website stated that the tickets would only be allocated in the specified blocks on a first come first served basis, but we did not mind as they were all good seats. We complained and eventually got a response which basically hid behind some small print and legal “cop out” stuff that was lurking somewhere in the depths of their web site. This gave them licence to change their prices and seats to whatever and wherever they liked, without notifying customers. My advice to you is avoid using this promoter and use companies like Ticket Master, who show you the actual seats you are buying at the time of booking and if you don’t like them, you do not need to proceed and the tickets are sent to you straight away. I have since read various internet forums, and we are not alone in our dissatisfaction with Trinity Street. Needless to say they have not heard the last from me!

So it off my soapbox and back to radio. Probably the best news since my last report is the fact that Worldspace have continued broadcasting using their old satellite technology, which was supposed to cease at the end of November this year. And here’s the even better news. Many of the radio stations, including Radio Caroline, are now free to air. Many original ex Worldspace subscribers have been retrieving their receivers from the depths of cupboards and lofts and are now listening again. There is also a revived interest in purchasing receivers on Ebay. Here is some more consumer advice from me. If your thinking of buying one yourself go for the Hitachi model, which is not only a great reliable Worldspace receiver, but when the transmissions do end, it is also a useful FM/AM and SW radio.

Is it my imagination or atmospheric conditions, but has Big L’s 1395 AM reception improved. It certainly seems to have here in Kent. I checked out the official website at and there is no mention of the transmission site being brought closer to England, which the station stated was their plan, or a reported increase in power. The signal is clearer during the day and less prone to interference, even when near the Eurostar and Eurotunnel in Folkestone. If only they could sort out not being able to broadcast on AM for the three hours every night.

It’s also great to see that Rosko has joined the Big L. He can be heard every Saturday from 17.00 to 19.00 hours. Last Saturday (15th) he mentioned something about a listener’s poll of their favourite Big L DJ and it did not surprise me that Ian Damon was number one. Despite the mistake he makes, you can’t help but love him and he plays good, not so common, old stuff and he’s also an original Radio London DJ. I was surprised that Ray Anderson was the runner up. Ray has a polished professional presentation, but I thought the likes of Adrian John or Mike Read would have been positioned higher than him. I could not find details of this poll on the Big L website, but I did see that they have published details of their Christmas and New Year schedule. One notable programme is Wolfman Jack's Christmas show being aired on Christmas Eve from 17.00 to 19.00 hours. I used to love listening to him in the 1970’s on the American Forces Network and certainly will be tuning in on Monday.

Radio Caroline seems to have finally cured its audio problems, but the EPG is still twenty-fours behind schedule. Like Big L they have in the last day or so published the Christmas schedule on the official web site, but this is only up to Sunday 30th December at the moment. The Christmas Day line up includes a live morning show from John Brocks, who last Saturday sat in for Johnny Lewis (otherwise occupied playing a dreadful small rotation of Christmas songs on KMFM), a repeat of the August the 14th special programmes in the afternoon and finally to round off the day, Barry James is doing the 60’s and 70’s show “live” from his home. I notice that the schedule still lists Tony Christian for Friday evenings 18.00 to 20.00 hours, but I don’t think he has done a show since the station moved from Vinters Park. Maybe someone forgot to tell him where the secret location is!

Some news just in, is that apparently the Tuesday night 60’s and 70’s show will start to be broadcast live from the Ross Revenge in the New Year. If they use a studio fitted with turntables, then may be they will be able to use the onboard record library. One of the co-presenters of this show is Clive Garrard and last Saturday morning he announced that he was taking over the Sunday afternoon show from Dave Foster and Dave would be doing the breakfast show, but I am not sure what days as I only caught the tail end of this. Clive was recently nicknamed “Captain Catastrophe” by Johnny Lewis, due to several mishaps and disasters that have plagued the presenter, starting with him losing a bag at Radio Day. This name seems to have stuck and even other presenters, such as John Brock have referred to him as this.

Unfortunately from last Saturday Bob Lawrence’s show was moved back by one hour, so it now starts at midnight. It was sometimes hard enough saying awake until 01.00, but 02.00 hours will be impossible for me. I think even more people will be listening to Buzby on their Ipods/MP3’s, but unless Santa brings me one and a broadband package on Monday night, I will have to use my “old technology”, a VHS-Hi-Fi Video Recorder! I certainly do not want to miss the show, because for me this is one of the highlights of the week on Caroline.

About a month ago I was travelling back to Northampton and on my journey I listened to Dave Cash on BBC Radio Kent doing his Saturday night double Top 10 show (one 60’s and one 70’s Top 10). Number One in the 70’s chart was Gary Glitter, who Dave refused to play. This started a bit of a debate, but the majority of his listeners agreed with his decision. I know that Barry James (Radio Caroline) has played Glitter and Jonathan King on his 60’s and 70’s show and have in the past pointed out to him that it is not politically correct to play such artists. What do you think? One of his listeners argued that Glitter was no different to Jerry Lee Lewis (who Cash does play), because he married a girl aged 13. Cash’s response was that this was done in a country were it was legal and anything sexually he did with her was by consent. This may have been so, but it certainly the Rock n’ Roll stars career a lot of damage at the time, especially in countries such as Britain. I also read that the teenage girl he married was his cousin! What about Pete Townsend? Police found that he had visited and used his credit card on a Child Pornography website, which he said he was doing so for research purposes. He was cleared of any charges, but was put on the sex offenders register for 5 years. Can you imagine what it would be like if we were not be able to hear rock legends the Who on our radios? Glitter and King are insignificant by comparison.

Staying with political correctness for a moment, a few days ago BBC Radio One made fools of themselves by editing out the words “Scumbag” and “Faggot” from Pogues Christmas Classic “Fairytale of New York”. The band heard the news, whilst on tour. I bet they loved the publicity and there is even speculation that this may boost sales enough to make it this year Christmas number one in the UK. Anything would be better than another year of an X-Factor Winner!

On Monday 3rd December Ronan O’Rahilly was at the Hall of Fame Lunch and apparently surprised and delighted to receive his Fellowship of the Radio Academy. Well done to Ronan. This was a long overdue recognition of your achievements in the radio industry. After making a short acceptance speech, Ronan, as usual, went back to blending in with the audience. Ralph Bernard, who made the presentation, incorrectly stated that if he had seen Ronan forty years ago it would have been his duty to arrest him. Why? Does he know something that we don’t?

Thanks to Peter Moore and all the volunteers at Radio Caroline, on the Ross Revenge, Caroline Society and everywhere else, for keeping the dream alive for yet another year. We really do appreciate it. And even though Big L is not my first choice in music format, it is nice to have an alternative and someone challenging the Borgs on normal terrestrial radio. I don’t know how you can keep going with such high AM running costs, but I hope you can continue throughout next year. Also, Radio Seagull it would be good to hear you more clearly in the UK on your 1602 AM frequency in 2008. Across the South of England, recognition and thanks must go to Roger Day, who on BBC Local Radio is getting away with being different. He actually plays a lot of Caroline format music, including album tracks. Roger mentioned that this week he went to the hairdressers and was forced to listen to a commercial radio station and he said on air how crap it was! Case in point, on my way to work this morning I briefly tuned in to the Invicta Breakfast Show with James Hemming, who as part of an outside broadcast was having peoples trees trashed (cut down with a chain saw) if they picked an envelope containing a piece of paper where it was written that this was their trees fate. What sort of people are entertained by such drivel? KMFM, Kent’s other commercial radio broadcaster are far better by comparison, even with their current rotation of about a hundred Christmas songs!

Tomorrow night I am going off out with a mate of mine from Ashford and we are taking Barry Crompton for a Christmas meal and drink. His choice, like last year, is an Indian. When I saw Barry last month, I got him to do a Top 5 and this is planned to be aired by Captain Catastrophe on the 60’s and 70’s show in January, so listen out for that one. Then on Sunday I am heading up to Northampton to be with my family. Whatever you are doing over the festive period, I hope you enjoy yourself. I’ll be back on this website in 2008.

Until then,


Steve Szmidt, Hawkinge, Kent, England.

(Please add one hour to the above quote times for your local German time)


Tuesday December 18th 2007

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Rob Olthof schrijft:

(Internationale) Radiodag 2007

In 2006 dacht ik dat de toen gehouden radiodag niet meer te overtreffen was. Dit jaar ’s avonds, toen Hans en Jana bij mij thuis nog aan de whisky zaten, dacht ik hetzelfde namelijk dat de Radio Dag van 2007 niet meer te overtreffen is. Het massaal toegestroomde publiek dacht dat waarschijnlijk ook. Wanneer zou je de samengestroomde sterren allemaal nog eens samenzien?

Robbie Dale, Johnnie Walker, Roger Twiggy Day zomaar een paar van de velen die allemaal te bewonderen waren op de Radiodag. Het kon toch niet mooier? Alle iconen uit de jaren zestig van de vorige eeuw bijelkaar en niet te vergeten de Amerikaanse jocks van Swinging Radio England. Opmerkelijk is dat in alle jaren jocks van alle stations al op een radiodag zijn verschenen, behalve dan van Veronica. Alleen Bull Verweij maakte jaren geleden zijn opwachting. Arrogantie? Wie zal het zeggen! Des te verheugd waren wij dat Tom Mulder kwam en met succes. En openhartig. De zaal noteerde ondermeer de volgende uitspraken: ‘Bij Veronica zaten niet de meest fantastische mensen: Gerard de Vries en Chiel Montagne. RNI was veel beter.’ ‘Hitparade platen werden niet gedraaid. Veronica was pionieren, Veronica was behelpen.’

Oei, dat was vloeken in de kerk, maar wel heel eerlijk. Het opmerkelijkste vond ik nog de uitspraak van een zeer trouwe Veronica fan die na afloop zei: “Nou merk ik wat ik allemaal gemist heb: Caroline en London!“ Oef….

Over Radio 10 zei Tom Mulder het volgende: ‘Radio 10 is aan het afkalven. Je moet je voorstellen dat het nu 2007 is, dus platen uit de jaren vijfitg en zestig kunnen eigenlijk niet meer.’ Persoonlijk ben ik het niet eens met deze uitspraak, want als frequente bezoeker van platenzaken, echte platenzaken, dus geen Free Record Shop, waar je constant onze troetel Marokkaan hoort jammeren, zie je de meeste verzamelaars uit de jaren zestig en zeventig. Waarom? Omdat de jaren tachtig en vooral de jaren negentig een dieptepunt markeren, veroorzaakt door de platenindustrie zelf. Een hele industrie kan niet drijven op de Ketie Melua, Trijntje Oosterhuis, Borsato en Ilse de Lange. (Zwart wit gesteld dan).

Op de Radiodag 2007 werd ook uitgebreid de Caroline periode tussen 15 augustus 1967 en 2 maart 1968 (de dag dat Wijsmuller beide radioschepen naar Amsterdam versleepte) besproken. Johnnie Walker, Roger Day en Robbie Dale, Spangles Muldoon en anderen haalden herinneringen op aan deze “illegale” tijd, waarop ze elk moment de marine verwachtten om beide schepen naar binnen te halen, hetgeen gelukkig niet gebeurde. Vreemd genoeg werd op geen enkele wijze kritiek geuit op de uiterst stomme zet om de tendercompany niet te betalen. Je vraagt dan om moeilijkheden. Wilde men Ronan sparen? Ik weet het niet. Als je nou toch manager bent van een radiostation, dan ligt het toch voor de hand dat je kosten wilt drukken? Dan ga je toch met je beide schepen voor de Nederlandse kust liggen? Immers, men had al een kantoor in Amsterdam. De potentiële adverteerders zaten toen in Nederland en niet meer in Engeland. Maar ja, ik heb het al zo vaak gezegd: Voor een meerderheid van de Engelsen zijn wij nog steeds een stel hottentotten.

Kerstmis 1967

Onwillekeurig dacht ik nog aan het moment, twee weken voor Kerstmis 1967 dat ik de rederij belde en vroeg of ze nog voor de Kerst getenderd zouden worden. De persoon aan de andere kant van de lijn schaterlachte en zei”Meneer ik luister ook naar Caroline; natuurlijk laten we de jongens aan boord niet aan hun lot over”. Tijdens beide Kerstdagen, de ene dag thuis, de andere dag in een restaurant in IJmuiden had ik de portable radio aan tafel. Op een gegeven moment boog de ober zich over mij heen en zei: “U luistert ook naar Caroline? Gelukkig zijn ze vlak voor de Kerst nog getenderd, ik weet het van de Wijsmullers.” Zelfs mijn vader, bepaald geen pop fan, vroeg zich bezorgd af of de jongens aan boord voldoende te eten hadden. De ober kon het bevestigen. Mijn Kerst 1967 kon niet meer stuk.



Sunday December 16th 2007

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Chris and Mary Payne reporting:

A bumper Christmas update of the Radio London website includes some very special memorabilia kindly supplied by Caroline's onshore agent, George Hare. Caroline North was involved in the relaunch of Liverpool's Cavern Club in 1966 and George has kept the press release, official invitation and Programme of Events. George has also sent us some great photos of both the Mi Amigo and Fredericia.

We also have our review of a brilliant year of radio events and Robbie Dale's personal photos from the Radio Academy Celebration of Offshore Radio.

We've also heard from a lady who was named after a Big L commercial - and it's not Weetabix!

Season's Greetings to all our site visitors.

Mary and Chris


Saturday December 15th 2007

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Hans Knot reporting from the international radio scene:

Read Hans Knot's Christmas 2007 report HERE.



News Archive:


17th May to 2nd December 2007

22nd July 2006 to 5th May 2007

6th February 2006 to 12th July 2006


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