Welcome to Issue #26 - May 2019
Welcome to Issue #26 of Community Media News. In this edition, we have some Strategy & Policy updates from Ofcom. Community radio is referred to in a recent House of Lords debate and on a local level we share some Community Updates from stations across the UK. Read about Local Radio Day and Southampton's first Cricket Festival in Events & Awards and don't forget to save the date for the Community Media Conference 2019 at BBC MediaCityUK in September. In Training & Resources there is an Essential Radio Skills workshop in Bristol and some note about SumAll, a tool for journalists to gauge their social media presence. In Campaigns & Funding we have some information on the Community Business Fund and the Community Business weekend. In Podcasts & Audio, we have the latest podcasts from Decentered Media and the most recent InRadio podcast from Dom Chambers. In the Technical and International Sections, we have a view on streaming media as radio's potential salvation, youth and pirate radio, LPFM stations and the challenge of participating in the next golden age of audio. 

As usual, there's so much going on in the sector, so head over to the Chat Forum for more Community Media News.

Email your news, press releases, event details and stories to
BBC Quay House
Plans are coming together for this year's Community Media Conference to be held at Quay House, BBC MediaCityUK in Salford on Saturday 28th September 2019. Confirmed for the time table so far are two masterclasses which will be run in the morning and repeated in the afternoon so that you'll be able to attend both:
And we are reaching out to a wide range of strategic bodies and representatives to give us the latest updates on the big issues for the sector: funding, sustainability, and of course small-scale DAB. Dr Rob Watson will be recording a series of podcasts throughout the day in his Decentered Media series exploring the use of media for community and social development.

Conference tickets will be on sale shortly but start looking into hotel accommodation now whilst things are still fairly cheap. The Conference facilities are fantastic and it will be a great chance to visit this iconic venue. Save the date and further news on the Conference Programme will be released shortly.

Ofcom Receives 35 Community Radio Licence Applications

Ofcom has received 35 applications for community radio licences from 43 areas of the UK which had submitted an expression of interest.

Applications for new stations have been received from 26 proposed stations for England, one in Northern Ireland, three for Scotland, and five in Wales. To view the list of applications received by the closing date (Tuesday 26 March 2019) click here.

Information for Broadcasters ahead of planned European Parliamentary elections

Ofcom has published a note to broadcasters on election programming, and an updated digest of evidence of past and current electoral support, to assist broadcasters in making editorial decisions ahead of potential European Parliamentary elections on 23 May. The evidence includes past election results and the latest opinion polls.
Lord's Debate - Local Commercial Stations
The Lords debated localness on commercial radio on 25th April and made a number of references to community radio.
Tony Smith, manager of community station Angel Radio in Hampshire took a bold step to help convalescing listener Marri by producing a foreign language show specifically for her! Marri had suffered a stroke and heart attack and while Tony was keeping up to date on her recovery, Marri messaged him to say she had heard a Dutch song on the radio and it took her back to her teenage years in Holland. Tony could see how therapeutic it was Marri to hear a song in her native language, so he asked Dutch radio presenter, Theo Bakker if he could present a special programme of all Dutch records from the 1930s to the1960s to help with her convalescence. Theo, without hesitation said 'yes' ..... and for an hour Angel Radio went Dutch with a special show with just one listener in mind". Tony added "It's probably a pretty rare thing for an English radio station to produce a foreign language programme for one listener, but that's where Angel Radio breaks the mould. My team of presenters and receptionists go out of their way to promote the well-being of our listeners. Read the full press release from Angel Radio here.

18 community radio stations from across the UK hosted community feasts on Friday 17th May to mark the first National Iftar Day. Iftar is the meal to mark the end of the days fast during Ramadhan. The group launched the national day with cities across the UK hosting events to share the Iftar meal and activities to build relationships within the community. Faisal Sultani, Station Operations Manager of Sheffield Community radio station Link FM, said “We have found that our neighbours do not know much about each other. We wanted to change that by connecting with our neighbours over a meal and get to know each other’s background.” Mohammed Tariq, Station Operations Manager of Inspire FM added, “We have been hosting The Big Iftar Luton for six years and we’ve seen more and more diversity each year. The community unites and friendships are made simply by talking to each other over some food.”

New Appointment for Andover Radio

Community Radio station Andover Radio has made two new appointments to develop its on-air sound and commitment to the town. Daytime presenter Craig Hicks and Rock Cafe host Cazi Brook have joined the management team to manage and enhance the radio station’s on-air sound.

Craig has been a radio presenter for stations like Spire FM in Salisbury and KLFM in King’s Lynn. Cazi started her radio career with Castledown Radio in Ludgershall. Craig says, “Andover Radio is one of the best hyper-local community radio stations in the UK. And there are around 280 of them across the country.

“I am honoured to take on this role after a year of being at the station”, says Craig who also runs an online radio station for the blind. “I’m really looking forward to working with Cazi, she’s committed and passionate about best representing Andover over the airwaves“.

Cazi adds, “This radio station is an incredible asset for the town and I a super excited to be able to drive this radio station forward at time when the radio industry is consolidating so there will be fewer local radio stations and less listener choice for local markets. I am really pleased to be working with the team at Love Andover HQ to give listeners a great quality local radio service that provides social gain for Andover and the surrounding area.”

Gloucester FM Crowdfunding Appeal

Gloucester FM 96.6 is Gloucestershire's longest running community radio station, broadcasting to the citizens of Gloucester and beyond for 18 years. The vision of GFM is to empower, educate and entertain, through music, news, information and advice. It provides radio services to individuals who are otherwise under-served by such services and facilitates discussion and the expression of opinions that might not be aired on mainstream radio. It also provides training and facilitates a better understanding of the community and the strengthening of links within it. GFM is currently crowdfunding to raise just over £2,000 to cover some core costs. For more information and to support the work GFM does check out the crowdfunding page here.

Radio LaB wins 'I Love Student Radio' Award

Radio LaB, the University of Bedfordshire’s community radio station is celebrating winning a national radio award. The radio station won Best Outreach Project in this year’s ‘I Love Student Radio Awards’, for its partnership with Luton Sixth Form College (The Luton Sixth Form Takeover), at an award ceremony at Swansea University.

Every year, students from the BTEC Radio Production course at the College ‘takeover’ Radio LaB’s studio at the University’s Luton campus to prepare and present their own shows, featuring a range of music, features and chat – all broadcast live. A judge commented: “I chose the Radio LaB project as the top choice because I felt it represented the most selfless sharing of skills and expertise with a local community. Training other young people in radio, and giving up two weeks of airtime to them, I thought was fantastic.”

Grange Hill Star and Son Join Local Community Radio Station

Grange Hill TV Star, Fleur Tickner (nee Taylor), has joined Susy Radio 103.4 to present a Sunday afternoon show with her son Josh, who at just nine years of age is the youngest presenter on the local community station which covers the North Sussex and East Surrey towns of Reigate, Redhill, Horley, Crawley and Gatwick Airport. Fleur played the part of school bully “Imelda Davis” in the legendary children’s TV school drama series, while Josh is a budding actor and singer-musician himself. The Mother and Son team are focusing on star musicians and events and much more, with a view to capturing a slightly younger audience for the station.

Neil Munday, who trained them both before they went on air commented: “Its been extremely good fun and something of a steep learning curve for me through simplifying training for Josh. We’ve had some hilarious moments in the studio ‘off mic’, too. Now Susy Radio has gained two fantastic new presenters who`s first live test show had calls and comments coming in from all over our area and beyond. I know Fleur is planning some very special shows with Josh and more “Grange Hill” cast members may well be popping in, so stayed tuned!”

Other News
Temporary Art Radio Station Begins Broadcast in Glasgow
Radiophrenia is a temporary art radio station exploring current trends in sound and transmission arts. Broadcasting live from Glasgow’s Centre for Contemporary Arts until 27th May, the station aims to promote radio as an art form, encouraging challenging and radical new approaches to the medium.

The broadcast schedule includes a series of 14 newly commissioned radio works, live studio shows, pre-recorded features and 12 free Live-to-Air performances. As in previous editions, the majority of the programme will be made up of selections submitted to an international open call for sound art and radio works. The station has an amazing and eclectic assortment of work lined up for you. As John Hall posted “Marvelous, enormous and bewildering, Radiophrenia is back!”  You can listen to Radiophrenia on 87.9fm in the Glasgow area and online at For the full schedule click here.
Image: copyright Radiophrenia-Hanna Hartman.

Sound Walk Sunday 2019: Open Call 
A sound walk is any walk that focuses on listening to the environment, with or without the use of technology, or adds to the experience through the use of sound or voice. Sound Walk Sunday is a global community event celebrating outdoor audio, geo-located, immersive performances, sound walks and audio-enhanced walking pieces, and is organised by the Museum of Walking in a collaboration with Made of Walking, and institutional and academic partners worldwide. This year's Sound Walk Sunday takes place on 1st September. The Museum of Walking's open call for existing and new work exploring the impact and possibilities of sound walking. For more information on criteria, eligibility etc click here. The deadline for submissions is Sunday 28 July 2019 to be included in media releases however submission can continue until the Sunday 18th August 2019.
Join In Local Radio Day - Friday 24th May
Local Radio Day highlights the value of local radio and celebrates the relationship between radio stations and their listeners. This year's Local Radio Day is on Friday 24th May and all stations are invited to participate.

If you want supporting audio, jingles, promos and voiceovers just drop a DM or email to #lovelocalradio #localradioday

Assistant Editor of BBC Sussex and BBC Surrey Mark Carter is one of the champions of this year’s Local Radio Day. Mark said: “I really like the idea of all sectors of radio coming together and Local Radio Day is a brilliant opportunity to do that.”

Dom Chambers, who recently launched the Local Radio Alliance, added: “To many listeners, radio is more than the music choices you like. It is local voices talking about the things you care about and finding out what is going on in your area.”

Last year over a hundred radio stations celebrated local radio by doing something extra special in their transmission areas. Check out this year's initiatives via #LocalRadioDay and here.

Unity 101 Cricket Festival, Sunday 28th July
Bring along your family, work colleagues and friends the inaugural Unity 101 Cricket Festival on Sunday 28th July at Southampton's Outdoor Sports Centre.

Download the brochure for this free and fun community event here (PDF).

Power to Change Community Business Fund Now Open

The Community Business Fund is designed to support existing community businesses with grants to help them progress towards self-sufficiency. This could be through increasing trading income, securing an asset or significantly reducing revenue cost. The fund opened for applications on 24 April and closes 22 May 2019 at 12 noon.

Who can apply? The programme is for existing community business based in England. More information on application criteria can be found in the guidance (pdf).

What can you apply for?
Grants of £50,000 – £300,000 are available to cover: Capital costs including building, vehicles, equipment of significant value, refurbishment costs. Project-specific revenue costs like staff costs, professional fees, volunteer costs

For more information click here.

Community Business Weekend 
The Community Business Weekend (16-19 May 2019) is an annual event that celebrates communities in England who are using business to transform the area where they live. Find out how you can get involved at #CBWkd19 #CommunityBusinessMatters

Essential Radio Skills Workshop, 23 June, Bristol  

Get hands on experience learning to produce, present and engineer a radio show on the latest Essential Radio Skills workshop at Bristol community station Ujima Radio 98FM. This workshop takes place in a real radio studio where you will learn how to use a mixing desk and produce and research a show, plus basic interviewing techniques and engineer/technician skills.

The workshop is on Sunday 23 June, 2.00 - 4.30pm. Tickets cost £60. All are welcome, young, old, male, female everyone can come! For more information and to book contact

Gauging Your Social Media Presence with SumAll

SumAll is a cross-platform automated analytics tool which allows journalists to receive daily and weekly updates on their social media performance through scheduled email digests and social media posts. It breaks down key metrics such as mention reach, likes and new followers on a daily and weekly basis.

To use SumAll, you need to link at least one social media or e-commerce platform to your account, to keep tabs on the performance of those accounts.

Importantly for journalists, this includes household names such as Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram.

Once you have at least one platform connected, you can start scheduling performance posts with the home screen dashboard under the ‘automate’ heading.

Read about this useful tool for gauging your social media presence on here

Podcasts: Easy Mistakes, Golden Rules and Learning Curves

Georgia Coan, podcast producer at BBC News and Benjamin Frisch, podcast producer at Slate share their stories on common podcasting mistakes and tips on how to avoid them. Listen to the 'Best Tips To Nail Your Podcasts' podcast from here.

We Are The Definition of Local - Glastonbury FM Celebrates 10 Years!

In the latest inRadio podcast, Dom Chambers explores many themes of local radio as it joins Glastonbury FM in celebrating its first 10 years.

InRadio is a regular podcast that features interviews with and about people who work, or want to work in radio, in the UK and beyond. Host Dom Chambers is a well-known advocate of community media. To listen to the latest podcast We Are The Definition of Local - Glastonbury FM Celebrates 10 Years! and all previous InRadio podcasts click here.

Decentered Media Podcasts

"When we learn to create community radio programmes, we change the way that we think about audiences and ourselves." In the latest Decentered podcast Dr. Rob Watson talks with Dr Katie Moylan from the University of Leicester and two students, Marian and Daisy, about the values and ideas we have to think through when we are creating a radio programme that addresses the challenges and experiences faced in community life. They discuss issues of identity and belonging, and how different types of media use and practice changes the way that we interact with people beyond thinking of them as passive audiences. To listen to latest Decentered podcast 027 - Community Radio Values click here.

In the Decentered Podcast 026, Rob Watson and a group of attendees at the Community Media Association's Exploring Citizen Journalism workshop have an in-depth conversation about the value and benefit of citizen journalism and community media, their experience of media culture, and what they aimed to get from learning about community media and citizen journalism. Read Rob's overview of the day and listen to the Decentered podcast 026 - Exploring Citizens Media here.

In the Decentered podcast 025 Rob Watson asks what distinguishes community media from other forms of media engagement? Why do people volunteer and give up their time to set up and run not-for-profit radio stations? And how should be thinking about the contribution that volunteers and non-professionals can make in changing the civic culture here in the UK? Rob Watson met up with Dr Siobhan Stevenson and discussed how the concept of social gain and social value are integral to the social purpose of community media, and how we can understand the potential of community media as a creative and empowering form of media practice. To listen to the Decentered podcast 025 - Community Media and Social Gain, click here.
Streaming Media Could Be Radio's Salvation
Based on the warnings about streaming media services such as Spotify, Deezer, or Pandora, it is easy to assume that listeners accessing audio content by the web is bad news for broadcasters. But this isn’t actually the case, because streaming media is merely a delivery platform that is indifferent to the content is carries. In other words, streaming media itself is no more an enemy of broadcast radio than it is a friend: It all comes down to the specific content being streamed, and how that affects broadcast radio’s audience share. " The key to attaining this salvation is for broadcasters to go all-out in replicating the very best features that streaming media web sites James Carelessand apps have to offer, and then topping them with the live information and personality-driven content that radio excels at." Read the article by James Careless on Radio World here.
Does Youth Radio Matter?
"Youth radio prompts discussion because it speaks to past and future values of community media itself." Read Ernesto Aguilar thoughts on what makes a sustainable and effective youth radio effort and how young people should be involved in community radio in his article for Radio World, a leading news source for broadcast radio owners, managers and engineers all over the world, here.

In the Big Media Era, Some Communities in the US Turn to Alternative: Low Power FM Radio

Journalist Glenn Daigon’s well-researched and reported piece for Who.What.Why called In Big Media Era, Some Communities Turn to Alternative: Low Power Radio lays out the medium’s timeline in the US, beginning with the creation of its predecessor, Class D FM, in the post-war period, to the killing the service in 1978, at the behest of public radio leaders and its growing popularity in the Big Media Era. An essential read for anyone interested in LPFM stations.

Image: A parade celebrating the Valley Free Radio (WXOJ-LP) barnraising in Florence, Massachusetts. The event was supported by the Prometheus Radio Project and overlapped with the Grassroots Radio Conference, August 7, 2005. Photo credit: Rhododendrites / Wikimedia (CC BY-SA 4.0)

Pirate Radio: Homegrown, Local and Clandestine

There's a clandestine world of pirate radio stations in New York. Pirate radio stations in New York broadcast music and messages to diverse communities across the city - Latin Americans, people from the Caribbean, born-again Christians and Orthodox Jews.  Joan Martinez grew up in a Haitian family and describes what you'll find. She recalls how pirate radio stations were 'a meeting ground', and gave the community a perspective on their world that more corporate stations never could.  Listen to the BBC Documentary podcast called New York City’s pirates of the air here and the clip called Pirate radio: Homegrown, local and clandestine here

Audio Is Hot (So Why Isn’t Radio Partying?)

A lot has changed over the years, but broadcast radio (we now need to make that distinction because of digital, satellite, and all the other forms of “radio”) and its state of health is always a major topic of conversation, especially at events like the recent NAB Show in Las Vegas. But despite a sense of a renaissance in audio, there is a feeling that radio broadcasters won't be able to easily intuit their way to success.  There's more to mastering podcasting, voice, and the connected car than routine activities like signing on a new radio station or running a sales contest.

For radio to participate in what promises to be the next Golden Age of Audio, it will require planning, investment, focus, expertise – and patience.  Most have been in short supply since the turn of the millennium.

Given the rapid pace of media and technological change, holding off on popping those champagne corks would seem to be the right thing to do. Read the comment piece on the Jacobs Media website here.

This email was sent to <<Email Address>>
why did I get this?    unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences
Community Media Association · The Workstation · 15 Paternoster Row · Sheffield, South Yorkshire S1 2BX · United Kingdom

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp