Editor:- Roland C. Pearson. Editorial Office:-
Sub-Editor:- Penelope Page. 31, Avondale Road,
Issue Number 9. Essex SS7 1EH,
Price 20p (Overseas 3 IRC's) ENGLAND.
EDITORIAL. The first thing you will notice about "Monitor" 9 is that it is two pages longer than usual! We can squeeze in the extra sheet now that the GPO, by going; metric, has allowed us a little more weight -for the first charge-step. Thanks to the generosity of those of you who paid over the odds for the last issue we have been able to absorb the cost of this enlarged edition, plus the increased postal charges. To expedite dispatch of the magazine we are not including a covering letter concerning payment; therefore your remittance for this issue shou1d be made in accordance with the instructions given on the back page. Finally, for readers interested in improving their reception of the Peace Ship, we are including a special article on the construction of a directional frame aerial.
First of all, I was on the Veronica ship three weeks before she was brought into harbour. The crew told me there were a lot of people interested in buying the ship. But the last man I spoke to who was interested told me Mr. Verwey was asking 300,000 guilders, which was too much for him. So she was brought in on August 11th. She reached IJmuiden at about 12 noon and Amsterdam two hours later. The crew worked all night to bring in the 400metres long anchor chain by hand, because it was not possible to do it mechanically. This was not easy, as the crew are not young boys like on other ships;
it was a very heavy job for them. When the ship was coming in, the harbour authorities asked Mr. Verwey what flag the ship would be f1ying. Was it Panamanian, South American, or something like that? But Mr. Verwey told them that he had the Shell flag! When she reached the harbour of IJmuiden five police vessels came out and arrested the ship by order of the officer van justitie, because it was a radio-ship with two transmitters on board, and now with the new law in Holland you cannot have this. There were a lot of unhappy Veronica fans there, and one of them had made a smokebomb, and threw it in the way of the police. Rob Out came out on a small boat to go onto Veronica but he was not given permission to. Also the famous Dutch singer Vader Abraham came out in his boat
to go on board the Veronica ship, and the police stopped him, too. Coming from IJmuiden to Amsterdam there were a lot of police launches in attendance. Pleasure craft kept coming alongside too. Every time the police turned then away, but every time they carne back because they wanted to go in with the Veronica ship. There is a very big bridge in Amsterdam harbour, and sitting on top of this was Veronica technician Rudie Doets. He made the last film of Radio Veronica from this position as she passed through it. As the ship was coming, into harbour someone said "Well, that's the crowning glory on the work of Mr. Van Doorn ", because it was he who stopped them all a year ago. The name of the tug that towed in the radio-ship was "Piranha", after the fish that kills people; I thought it was not so nice to use this ship to bring in the Norderney.
The ship is now behind the Amsterdam central station. I think that is a very good place as you can easily get there by train and it is easy to find if you are in Amsterdam. But they want permission to take her to the harbour of Volendam or Lelystad.
Lelystad is not so good as it is on the other side of the IJselmeer; it is a new part of Holland where few people live, and there are not many railways so it is difficult to get there. But Volendam is an ideal place. It's a very special old place where many people spend their holidays. The inhabitants still wear the traditional dress and wooden shoes and live in very old wooden houses, and there you have the windmills. So I think that is also a good position for the Veronica ship; but I think the best place is still there behind the Central station. Mr. Verwey has sold the ship now to the VOO for 50,000 guilders. Rob Out is still head of the Organisation. He suggested they make a recording studio of it as a lot of pop groups in Holland need a good studio and there is a lot of equipment on the ship. But the chances are they will make it a museum. If you have something like that which does not make any profit you can ask the government to give you some money every year; so Mr. Verwey said he would ask Mr. van Doorn for a subsidy to make a good pirate museum out of it!
On August 28th the transmitters were removed by the Authorities, and the seals removed. Then on September 2nd it was announced that the Veronica Omroep Organisatie as to be allocated three hours per week on Hilversum Radio, starting; January 1st, and one hour per week on TV, starting April 1st.
Hans Verbann, FRC Holland.
- Page Two -
"The first one was from the Swedisg radio Syd in 1965". "No, there was one before that, from REM Island off the coast of Holland". "I didn't know anybody had tried it before Ronan did from a Super Constellation aircraft".
Which was the first "pirate" TV station to broadcast to England? That was Tower TV! Yes, in November, 1965, viewers along the Essex coast were treated to their first taste of offshore television! At the time there were several offshore radio stations, but TV was considered to be impractical, for a boat would move about too much to allow the transmission of a satisfactory picture. However, two men announced their intention of running a TV station from one of the abandoned war-time defence forts in the Thames Estuary. They were Eric Sullivan, a Colchester businessman, and Peter Jeeves who had previously worked in such capacities as an advertising manager for Conde Mast Publications and as a Southern TV executive.
During the summer a station by the name of Radio Pamela had been heard in Essex. The station was named after a certain Mrs. Short; her husband, George, had built the equipment himself and operated it from a small boat. The aerial he used was held aloft by a balloon!. The whole of the TV equipment used by Tower TV was built by George, an electronics engineer, who became part of' the Tower team as the "technical adviser". But before Tower TV came on the air, radio broadcasts were heard from the fort. Tower Radio began testing in October 1965, it was estimated that the signal would reach four and a half million homes within an 80 mile radius of Colchester. Actually this estimate was exceeded: the first tests were received not only as far away as Hertfordshire, Ealing, Romford, Aldeburgh, Sevenoaks and Gillingham, but the Colchester office even received a tape recording of the station from a listener in Holland! Several different wavelengths were explored; 197, 210, 212, 215 and220. But it was finally decided that 236 metres was best for Tower. The station was on the air from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. each day, and a varied programme was planned, to quote Peter Jeeves : "To interest and entertain minority groups`". This included a "Keep fit class" To start the day, sport, farming, industry, religion, education, politics and local news programmes - and about 40% of the airtime was taken by pop music. Advertising taken by the station included "social announcement" such as weddings, engagements and 21st birthdays - Tower, unlike the ship-based stations, intended to be a local radio service.
The fort used by Tower Radio was Churchill One on Sunk Head Sands. It had been carefully chosen; according to advertising-manager Robin Garton, "The Tower is situated just outside territorial waters and is not liable to prosecution the Wireless Telegraphy Acts".
It was four storeys high, and stood on two concrete legs. Before it was taken over by the Tower team on October 13th it had not been occupied since the war. This was a disadvantage, for it meant that the area around the fort had not been sounded for many years. The waters near the Tower were very dangerous at times because of the Sunk Sands. Tower Radio's first tender was the fishing smack "Girl betty" from Burnham-on-Crouch, but tendering soon had to be arranged from Harwich instead, due to orders from H.M. Customs. There came a time when the sea was so rough that the two tugs, "Agamar" and ''Kent"' were unable to deliver supplies to the Tower; they were not able even to get near enough for the Tower crew to haul the provisions up by rope as they often did in rough weather. The result was that the Tower ran short of fresh water, and emergency messages were broadcast! The telephone number of the office was give over the air with requests that listeners pass on the request for water supplies to be sent out immediately. The office was inundated with calls from all over Essex, Suffolk and Kent; but they were unable to do anything about the situation. Both the Royal National Lifeboat Institution and the Radio Caroline organisation offered to send out boats to bring the crew ashore if their lives were in danger, but no one was willing to take out water. Before supplies were restored, the Tower crew were totally without fresh water for an entire day, despite their efforts to conserve it by washing in sea water. However, morale remained high, with DJ's making such quips as "The Tower without a shower!".
During October rumours abounded concerning the opening of Tower TV. While the experts on land said it could not be done, the Tower team went ahead with their preparations. The company had been registered in Northern Ireland as Vision Projects; an advertising rate card was made available, an office was opened in London under the name of "Towerad (Sales) Ltd". The most suitable frequency for -the station was considered
to be Channel 5, which was in use by the BBC in some areas but was clear after 12.45 a.m. it was intended that there would be broadcasts for at least 2 hours every day from Tower, with cartoons, old films, advertisements and news.
The great day arrived on November 9th. Using a 119ft. aerial and with a power of about 10 watts, Tower TV first came on the air at O4.20. Persons along; the Essex coast Who were patient enough to be standing by their sets at such an early hour were rewarded by a blurred image of the Back-and-White to test card. This was a white globe
topped by two 'T's and a star, and the words "Tower TV". The signal proved to have a 25 mile radius.
Tower TV had come; but not to stay. It had been proved offshore TV could be done; but, on January 8th, 1966, it was announced that it would be done no more from Sunk Head. However, Tower Radio continued to test. An official opening day was set, and a new generator was taken out to boost the power from 250 watts to 5 kW. Peter Jeeves was aboard the fort on the morning of March 17th. With the words: "Good morning. You're tuned to 236 where good listening starts at 7 a.m. precisely" he opened Tower Radio - on the air "officially" after five months of tests! The station's first DJ's were John Walters and Graham Smith, both English, and American "Dynamite" Dave Simster. Dave first came to Egland from his native Florida with the U.S. Air Force, and looked upon Tower Radio as an ideal opportunity to convert England to his great love, Country and Western music.Before joining the Tower team he was manager of "Clarke's General Store" in Newmarket - it was a natural development for him to change the name of the shop to "Tower Trading Post"!
The Sunk Head fort is no more. To quote a report from the "Daily Mail" of August 22nd, 1967: "Sunk Head Fort, former anti-aircraft battery and pirate radio station, was toppled into the sea with 2,200 lb of plastic explosive yesterday. The demolition, which threw debris 300 ft. into the air, was completed by men of all three Services. The job began on Friday, and yesterday Royal Engineers placed the final explosive charge and an officer lit a 12-minute fuse. The blast it produced was seen 14 miles away at Felixstowe, Suffolk". Tower Radio is gone; but not forgotten! Thanks for the memory; and thanks, too, to Eric Sullivan and his niece Wendy for the loan of the Tower press-cutting collection, from which this article was compiled.
Let us hope that all such good times are not in the past!
It is Monday, August 14th, 1967 The day the music died for nearly all our British offshore stations, the day the MOA came into effect. But we know that no man will ever forget this day; let us turn the clock forward and see just how they will think of us in 1975...
In eight years time, commercial radio is a way of life in Britain. So let us listen to Scotland's first legal free radio station, RADIO CLYlE. Let us try the morning of August 13th, starting from midnight. RADIO SCOTLAND 's RICKARD PART: is compereing a programme; and he still has some of the old team with him in the studio - PAUL YOUNG, TONY ALLAN and TONY MEEHAN. They are gathered there for a special commemorative show all about offshore radio, and in particular the days of their own Radio Scotland! During the course of this two-hour show they chat on the telephone to three other ex-colleagues: JACK McLAUGHLIN, EDDY WHITE and STUART HENRY. Of all these people, only Eddy is not working in radio any more. Stuart has become one of the most popular DJs on Radio Luxembourg, and in fact was talking on Radio Clyde while he should have been on the air on 208. Did he mention that he had been taking part in another show? Indeed he did, when he returned to his own programme at about 01.20. As should be, he was proud to announce that he had been talking by phone about the "pirate days" on the Glasgow station.
Now let us move a day forwards to August 14th itself. If we tune to 259 we still expect to find good music coming from the North Sea after eight years - and yes! It is still there! But now the daytime programmes are in Dutch, called RADIO MI AMIGO. They too are remembering the British MOA today; at 14.00 BERT BENNETT begins his show with Johnnie Walker's story of "Man's Fight For Freedom". This is followed by some familiar records such as "We Love the Pirate Stations" and jingles from RADIO LONDON and RADIO CAROLINE. normal programming was resumed after the playing of "All You Need Is Love" shortly after 15.00 BST/CET.
CAPITAL RADIO, London's entertainment station, remembers too. From 21.00 NICKY HORNE presents a special edition of his two-hour programme featuring records that were made popular by the offshores, and many snippets of memories from RADIO LONDON.
Capital is in the happy position of having no less than five ex-offshore presenters on the station: KENNY EVERTT and DAVE CASH ("Big L gave the Kenny & Cash programme the biggest boost that ever happened"), TOMMY VANCE of Caroline fame, IAN DAVIDSON who appeared on London under the name IAN DAMON, and PETER JAMES, who now presents Capital's classical music programme, was previously with the fort-based station RADIO 390.
The final tribute of the day comes from RADIO CAROLINE, herself. At 23.00 ALAN SYMONDS, after having played a record for all the people who have worked on and for
Caroline, dedicated "Caroline" by The Fortunes "From all the millions of listeners, and DJ's past and present - thanks very much RONAN for making it all possible for -nryoneo. A short tribute; but a fitting and sincere one, which we endorse. In 1975, y all still remember. And we thank them.
In "Monitor" No.8 we began the exciting story of the University station RADIO BAILRIGG. Now read the second part of this fascinating account,..
During the second year I was asked to take over as Director. I inherited a fairly healthy concern, and at first things went very smoothly. But one day our chief engineer was testing the transmitter when black smoke and a strange smell began to emerge from inside it; It was quickly switched off, and we discovered to our horror that the mains transformer was burning. Suddenly we were off the air again. Needless to say the transformer was a non-standard obsolete type, but by incredible good fortune we were able to trace the manufacturers, who produced a replacement to order for a very modest cost in about three weeks. This incident was one of many technical setbacks that have plagued the station over the years. A University which teaches electronic engineering obviously has a pool of students and staff able to help with the technical side of a campus station, and in one case, Brunel, the studio was even constructed as part of the official course; but a particular difficulty faced by an Arts-based University such as Lancaster is the lack of suitably qualified engineers, which makes any technical jobs much more prolonged and difficult.
Programming, on the other hand, was developing quite well. A number of recording companies were by now sending free promotion records to the campus stations, and a basic library was gradually being built up. This was supplemented by the personal records of DJ's, station personel and their friends, and a fairly wide selection of music programmes could be found in a typical week, with regular slots for folk, blues, jazz and classical music. Non-music productions included a weekly programme for students with their own transport produced by the University Motor Club, campus news and information, and feature programmes of current affairs and topical interest. One regular programme was "Implosion", produced by our first Director. One of its notable achievements was a documentary called "The Tragedy of Belfast". It included some of the most moving and revealing interviews with both sides that have ever been broadcast on any radio station. But a problem with non-music programmes was that with only one studio all the preparation work had to be done outside programme hours and, as anyone with broadcasting experience will know, editing a talk programme is often a long job. Regular broadcasting hours were 8.30 p.m. until 2 a.m., and for a time weekend broadcasts went on until 3 a.m. At various times we tried broadcasts on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons, at breakfast time and at teatime. The main problem with breakfast shows was that people kept failing to get up in time to present them! However they have recently been resurrected and I understand they are quite successful. Other programmes the station has since introduced include Esperanto and German lessons; "Octopus", which deals with national and campus current affairs; "Pulse", a contemporary music magazine with in-depth interviews; a regular Arts programme; "Gay News" for and about homosexuals; a consumer programme and a weekly preview of campus events. Considering that all the staff are unpaid, part-time volunteers the range of programmes is remarkably ambitious. Perhaps the most popular feature of campus radio programmes over the years has been the "phone-in requests" feature, whereby people can have a request played in a few minutes. This certainly attracts listeners, but is often less popular with the DJ's, who may wish to play specific music instead of the choice of others. One very successful alternative to this style of late-night radio is the so called "concept programme", embracing music and poetry on a particular theme, such as love or war. Concept programmes are not easily planned in advance, but properly done they can not only be quite moving but can actually make people really listen instead of ringing up for requests. We believe that our station was one of the first to pioneer this style of radio in the U.K.
A real test of the station's capabilities occurred when the now-famous "Craig Affair" reached its climax. A complete "academic strike" supported by many students and staff in protest at the treatment of a popular lecturer took place. Radio Bailrigg went on the air between 9 a.m. and 2 a.m. for several days to bring all the latest information to the campus. It was exhausting, but very successful; At one point I saw several hundred students sitting in the main square at the University with numerous radios tuned to us in response to an appeal to "share Radio Bailrigg with others". To be objective, however, not all our programmes were successful. The listeners soon made it clear when they thought certain programmes were rubbish, but how can you "sack" people who are volunteers? Some were simply no good, some tried hard but just did not have the feel for broadcasting, others were only interested in "ego-tripping". Yet we had a moral obligation to let anyone "have a go". How can you maintain high broadcasting standards whilst employing people of such widely differing abilities?
You may ask, how is control exercised over the station to ensure that it performs its functions as efficiently as possible? Well at first the "dual control" we had envisaged by the students and administration was vested in a small body known as the Board of Control. Ministry Regulations require a member of staff to be the official
licensee of the station, and. the Secretary for Student and College Affairs agreed to act as licensee. The secretary of the Board of Control was also a member of staff; the student side had the Station Director and representatives of the Student Council. But in practice it was the Director who made the decisions affecting the station; the Board of Control was merely there to give such decisions official approval, as most of its members took little interest in the day-to-day affairs of the station. This placed a . very great burden on the Director. wow the Board has been disbanded and a new smaller body set up with more carefully chosen membership. Control is kept to a minimum where programmes are concerned. she normal laws of libel and obscenity apply, but there is vastly more freedom than on. any other licenced operation that I can think of, and I marvel at how well the station seems to maintain the standards it sets for itself without undue difficulty. Official posts are kept to a minimum. There is no "Programme Controller" since individuals are responcible for their own programmes. The nearest equivalent is the "Programme Coordinator", whose job involves fitting all the programmes offered into a workable schedule, and preparing the printed schedules which are circulated free every week to all residential areas on the campus. There is by law no advertising on campus radio, but the schedules carry sufficient advertising to pay for the costs of production. In the past, a system of Studio Managers was tried out, but it was very soon found that people considered it unnecessary to be present in the studio for several hours with very little to do. Most of the broadcasters were able to cope with the actual running of their own programme, so a formal system of studio managers was abolished. At Lancaster there has always been a conscious attempt to avoid over-officiousness. The number of regular staff members is small enough to enable everyone to get to know each other personally, and although differences of opinion do occur, the atmosphere is relatively relaxed, and on the whole people respect those who hold positions of authority.
Until May 1972 there was virtually no contact between ourselves at Bailrigg and other campus stations. Often the first we knew of additional campus stations coming on the air was when the Ministry engineers visited us, and informed us of their recent visits to our contemporaries. However in the spring of 1972 we received two letters offering positive action to spur further contact. A letter from York arrived first, making tentative suggestions about a conference for student broadcasters; while by coincidence Essex had come up with the same idea but had already taken the first steps in organising one. So with the exception of York, whose Station Director had misinterpreted the Essex gesture, a conference in May brought together representatives of all stations already operating and a number of groups with plans to set up stations. It was a highly successful conference; but the most significant achievement was the formation of the National Association of Student Broadcasting, which would be able to act as a co-ordinating body and a spokesman for all stations in dealing with the various authorities; such as -Phonographic Performances, with whom more satisfactory arrangements have been negotiated. They now allow 60 % of the broadcast time to be devoted to "needletime", whereas previously a fixed four hours per day was allowed, which imposed rigid limits on programming. The NASB has also organised a system enabling easier exchange of taped programmes between stations, and recently started a newsletter.
Further conferences were held at Warwick in 1973, Loughborough in 1974 and in February this year at Guildford. York sent representatives to the second conference and was accepted as a "founder member" since it is the oldest of the campus stations. Other founder members were the stations at Bath, Brunel, Essex, Kent, Loughborough, Stirling, Surrey, Swansea, Warwick and of course Lancaster. Representatives of each station attend frequent "committee meetings". When we met our fellow broadcasters for the first time we found a wide variety of origins and approaches. Some had started as land-based pirates; one began with a public-address-type operation; others, like ourselves, had no real forerunners. The amounts spent on equipment varied from about £2,400 at Warwick to something like £600 at Essex. The latter used very modest studio equipment yet due to the very organised running of the station it proved possible to maintain it in very good working order. Warwick had spent much of their money on a large wooden but which providers them with a studio completely separate from the main buildings. There is no such thing as a "typical campus station" - each is highly individual, and this is one of the most fascinating aspects of campus radio.
At the end of the Summer Term 1972 I like my predecessor, was forced to resign the position of Director due to pressure of academic work. Also, for personal reasons I was given permission to take a year away from Lancaster before embarking on my final year. I thought I was going to miss quite a lot of developments at Radio Bailrigg, but as things turned out I missed very little! during the summer I heard that the Ministry had requested that "before any inspection of the installation is made" the frequency be changed to 962 kHz, since Radio Solent was shortly to begin operating; on 998 kHz. While the station was waiting for a new crystal to be made it was decided that since we had been putting out full programmes without official permission in any case, the autumn's test broadcasts would start as planned on 998 kHz, This proved to be a fatal
decision, for the Ministry somehow found out that transmissions were taking place, and ordered them to be stopped immediately until full approval had been granted for 962 kHz. Only a continuous tone or a single tape of music announced as a "test transmission" was allowed. A few of these "tests" were made but an even worse crisis arose when the transmitter stopped working altogether! The lack of technical knowledge available combined with the age of the transmitter convinced my colleagues that a new transmitter was the obvious answer. After various delays and problems two more terms had gone by, and despite attempts to get 'back on the air by the beginning of the Autumn Term it was November 1973 before everything had been approved by the men from the Ministry. Now a new studio complex has been purpose-built in the latest of the colleges to be completed. This comprises two self-contained studios, the smaller mainly for presentation and a larger one for presentation and production. Each contains two GL-75 record decks, two Revox A.77 tape decks, an eight-channel mixing console and several AKG D.202 microphones. Ancillary equipment includes a cassette recorder, various additional microphones and remote facilities. A useful facility for live transmissions is a means of cutting off the output from either studio through the mixer in the adjacent studio, which means that anyone who gets "out of hand.' can be cut off without being aware of the fact and without undue chaos ensuing. Outside the studios is a large reception area and office. Storage space is available for the tapes and records - the latter amounting to hundreds of LPs and several thousand singles as well as numerous spare parts, wire and engineering tools.
One major difficulty for campus radio has been that so far the only form of transmission allowed is the "restricted radiation" type. Only about half the total number of students are in residence at the University, and the wish to broadcast to all the students regardless of where they are living has often been expressed. In fact there are good arguements for giving even more priority to those living away from the campus since they are more out of touch with life there outside academic hours. For this to be possible, there is need for a transmitter covering the whole area. Realising this, some university stations have investigated the possibility of extending their service to cover the whole community, thereby providing a form of community radio not yet in existence in this country. But clearly there would be numerous problems; the present technical and programming standards would be unlikely to satisfy the Authorities, and conversely the entire nature of campus radio would be changed if enough money was provided to turn the station into local ones, and some of the original objectives would have to be sacrificed. NASB has therefore not adopted this long-term development as an official goal. Instead it, is involved in discussions with the authorities about the possibility of allowing the present type of service to be broadcast on facilities which can be received in the surrounding area. The most likely outcome would be for permission to be granted for VHF operation rather than MW; though the latter would be easier, and more widely receivable by the target audience.
If you happen to live near a university which has its own station, I am sure you willbe made very welcome if you want to visit them. The universities with stations already operating; are Bath, Brunel, Kent, Lancaster, Loughborough, Stirling, Surrey, Swansea, Warwick and York. Others at various stagers of development, which may even be operating, by -the time you read this, are at the Mid-Warwickshire College, N.E. London Polytechnic, East Anglia, Oxford, Hatfield Polytechnic, Nottingham, Imperial College London., and Salford. A list of active campus stations with their addresses is published in the "World Radio TV Handbook". If you need to know anything about campus radio which you cannot find out by contacting one of the stations concerned, you are welcome to write to me, and I will either answer your letter personally or pass it on to the appropriate person. But please, if you need a reply, enclose a S.A.E. Also, I am working full-time in radio myself, and do not always feel like spending; a large part of my spare time writing letters about radio! So, the briefer the questions, the more chance of are early reply. I hope that "Monitor" has set another trend by encouraging other journals to give more space to campus radio, and I will always be pleased to hear from anyone who can help in this respect.
I officially left Lancaster University in June 1974, but still find it hard to imagine that I am not still on the staff of the radio station there. In my several years close involvement with the station, I became very emotionally attached to it, and my feelings when presenting my final programme -must have been the same as the numerous DJ's who went through the same experience in the 1960's. The broadcasters who read "Monitor" will understand exactly what I am trying to say - once it "gets in your blood" it becomes a part of your life; and if I have managed to convey some of my own enthusiasm in this article, I have achieved what I set out to do. I am conscious of
how fortunate I was to be involved with the pioneers of campus radio, and I often feel that in many ways those joining established stations miss a great deal of the excitement attached to the start of any radio station. Campus radio is fortunate in having a constant turnover of which ensures a permanent influx of new ideas and voices, so within a few years the whole sound of the station on can be radically changed. But
changes in style cannot compensate for the euphoria of the first transmission, when everything is a big new adventure for staff and listeners alike. As you have read, Lancaster's station has had many problems in its time. I hope that by describing some of them I have destroyed the myth that there is something glamorous attached to radio. What now exists is the result of six years hard work. It is unfortunate that those who worked hardest of all, the first pioneers, had to leave the university before the results of their efforts had come to full fruition. I would like to end this account by paying tribute to them all.
Copyright Andy Sennitt 1975
Enquiries for Andy should be sent c/o "Monitor" at our usual address and please do not forget the SAE! Further information about Campus Radio will appear in "Monitor" from time to time, If you missed the first part of this article, copies of "Monitor" No.8 are still available at 20p each.
This is a clandestine Short-Wave station located somewhere on the continent. Broadcasting on 6250 kHz (48•00 metres) it can be heard most Sundays between 08.0015.00 GMT. Highlights from their programme schedule include "AJ on Sunday &.,ABC goes DX" presented by A. J. Beirens from 09.00-10.00 GMT, and Rob Ronder, of Radio Atlantis fame, in English between 13.00-14.00 GMT. The postal address is ABC Europe, P.O. Box 28085, Rotterdam, Holland. A QSL card is promised for all correct reception reports upon receipt of 3 IRC's. Distinctive stickers in yellow and black are also available.
An aerial which is not much heard of nowadays is the FRAME or LOOP aerial, This article attempts to describe how to make one that you can put next to your radio to produce an all-round improvement in reception.
The actual size and shape of the frame are in no way critical, but the larger the aerial the better. So first decide how large an aerial you can tolerate in your room. If you have room for only a small one, a 2ft square is the most practical. I chose 10" x 70" as a full-size 40" square one gets in the way too much. Here's what you'll need to make your aerial: WOOD, or similar non-conductive material for frame; for the full-size one you need 1 piece 69"x 2" x ½ " and 2 pieces 10" x 2" x ½ ".You simply nail a 10" piece onto each end of the long piece to make an "I" shape.
VARIABLE TUNING CONDENSER. This you can buy from any radio components shop. Ask for a "Single variable condenser, value around 500PF" (on some makes that's 0•0005UF), as used for making crystal sets. If you cannot get one of these, any type sold as a replacement for a transistor radio can be used. Alternatively, you can salvage one out of an old scrap radio, but make sure that you can turn it without the metal blades scraping. Fit the condenser to the wooden construction either with wire or by making a bracket for it. Fit a PLASTIC KNOB onto the end of the spindle, and check that the condenser rotates without catching. INSULATED WIRE; you require around 80' of the single plastic-covered variety as used for aerials. You can use separated doorbell wire, and it's quite acceptable if it has to have a join in it. Fit one end of the wire onto either terminal of the condenser, and anchor it onto the wood with a nail so that it doesn't pull on the connection. Then carefully wind the wire around the frame. Notches can be cut into the wood to hold it, or small nails can be used, Continue winding until about 80ft of the wire is used up, then use either a bit more or a bit less wire to get back to the condenser the shortest way. Anchor the end as before, and connect it to the other terminal.
That's the aerial completed, now to test it. Tune in your radio to a weak station, turning it around until it is loudest. Then place the aerial next to the set with the wires vertical. Slowly turn the tuning condenser, without touching the wires, and at one point the station should come up in strength. Place the aerial at either end of the radio to find at which end it works best; or put the radio into the middle of the coil right up to the wires on one side, then move the set in and out to find the best point. You will find the aerial tuning more critical if you tune it away from the set; the larger aerials affect the signal several feet away from the radio. To reject whistles at night, turn the whole lot - the radio & aerial together - around up to 900, Also, you can reduce co-channel notes due to the sharp tuning of this kind of aerial.
I have made about 7 or 8of these aerials to measure their effectiveness, and they have all worked very well. For technically-minded, an 8" square one will give about 20dbs of 'gain' over a small Ferrite Rod. A 15" square about 34dbs, and the full-size 10" x 70" gives over 48dbs. Radio Nederland (Postbus 222, Hilversum, Holland) will supply you with a booklet on receipt of two IRC's, but if you have any problems or would like a diagram, write with an SAE to:- Rodney Page, 11 Harborough Road North, Whitehills, NORTHAMPTON NN2 8LS.
A HISTORY_OF RADIO NORDSEE INTERNATIONAL.Jeremy C-G. Arnold. Part III. 1971 - Legal Actions, Bombs, Spies & Storms.
After the official reopening on Sunday 21st February 1971, things settled down to normal on board the Mebo II. However the legal scene on shore was not so peaceful. Radio Veronica went to the court in Rotterdam in an attempt to get RNI's transmissions stopped and the ship brought into port where it would face seizure for unpaid debts. (Veronica claimed she had paid RNI not to broadcast in Dutch, or off the coast of Holland, both of these conditions having been broken.
RNI counter claimed that the agreement was only for a limited period which had expired, and in any case they had tried to return the money but it had been refused.) During the proceedings judge J. G. L. Reuder described the participants as being "as slippery as eels in jelly". On 25th March the judge gave his ruling, Veronica lost their case and said they would probably appeal.
On 1st April English programmes in the evening on RNI were interrupted by a commentary on how Scheveningen Pier was tilting over and sinking beneath the waves!
It is hardly surprising therefore that listeners did not know what to believe when several weeks later, at 10.50 p.m. on saturday 15th May, just after he had played a record called Melting Pot, Alan West interrupted programmes to say that there had been an explosion and the ship was on fire. However, as the appeals for help became increasingly urgent it was obvious he was not joking.
One such call went "Mayday, mayday, mayday, this is Radio Nordsee International from the Mebo II at exactly 52degrees 11' latitude, 40 16' longitude, four miles from the coast of Scheveningen, Holland, one mile from the radioship Norderney, Veronica. We are having to abandon ship very soon, the bridge and the engine room are on fire, the fire is taking control of the ship. The fire was caused by a bomb thrown on board from a small motor ship, repeat, small motor launch with an outboard motor. We don't know who it belongs to, but it certainly bombed us while it was here".
He also expressed concern in case the fire should reach the fuel tanks and blow -the ship out of the water. The last remarks i n Eng1glish were "This is the Mebo II on fire, we need help immediately", and finally ""The Mebo II is now abandoning ship",
Followed by the playing of Man of Action which slowly faded away.
For the ordinary person helplessly listening to his radio the atmosphere of tension and suspence was enhanced by the constant playing of "'spooky music from the Hollies "Butterfly" LP. Obviously it was just the first record that carne to hand, but it was coincidentally very appropriate to the occasion, as was "Melting Pot"'.
A bit later Kurt Baer, who was one of only three to be left on board when the remainder had abandoned ship, could be heard spearing over the air, and coughing presumably because of the smoke. About 11.40 p.m. the transmitter was switched off and it really did seem as if RNI had met its end this time. Not so, transmissions resumed again very briefly in the middle of the night about 2.30 a.m., for just long enough for Alan West to report that the fire was now out and all were safe. He explained that they would have to switch off because the RF "radiation from the aerial was affecting the ships alongside.
At 6.0 a.m. Dutch programmes started almost as if nothing had happened except for a report in German by Kurt Baer for Mr. Bollier, and a report in English by Alan West, This is that he said, "Following a disastrous explosion in our engine room last night at 10.50 we prepared to abandon ship, the tugboat Eurotrip soon came alongside and took all members of the crew and staff on board except for the captain, Captain Hardefeld, and the chief engineer Joop du Paar, and the transmission engineer Kurt Baer. Minutes later, within an hour of the explosion, the oil rigging tug Vollancz came alongside to fight the fire which at that time was raging throughout the whole stern end of the ship. Later other ships came to our help, including the tugs Smith Bank which joined in on the fire-fighting and Titan, also the Scheveningen lifeboat, and the lifeboat from Noordwijk, the Royal Netherlands Navy frigate Heldeland also came to our assistance. To all members of the crews aboard these ships, our sincere thanks, also our heartfelt thanks to those of you who may have helped on shore, if not for all of you we may not be here this morning. Once again, thank you all. A quick report on the condition of the ship, the whole of the after end is a write-off constructionwise, but we are still afloat and far from unsafe. The whole of the forward end including the disc jockey's quarters, the studios, newsroom, transmission hall and AC generators are intact. The Mebo II is in no danger of sinking and we shall continue to broadcast as normal". And they did, though life on, board must have been very uncomfortable. What little cooking they were able to do had to be done in the shower room as the galley and mess room had been destroyed along with the crew's quarters.
Further details began to emerge as time went by. The attack took place on a calm foggy night when the Mebo crew were all watching a football match on television, the three attackers wearing frogman suits approached in an inflated rubber boat, two climbed on board the Mebo and found their way into the engine room. There they left explo-
sives or petrol bombs and lit a fire of oily rags. Shortly after they had made their escape there was an explosion. Alan West, thinking something had collided with the ship, rushed on deck just in time to hear the sound of an outboard motor receding into the distance, and see flames shooting out of the engine room shaft. Early reports that a man had been killed were thankfully incorrect. Damage to the Mebo II was estimated at about £30,000-worth.
Later three men were detained by police and after two of them had confessed the Amsterdam Public Prosecutor, Mr. Johan Hartsuiker, gave details of how the attack was carried out. Apart from those details already recorded it is worth mentioning that the men had tried to carry out the attack-the previous Wednesday but bad weather and a faulty outboard motor forced then to turn back. After the attack the men sunk the motor, cut up the boat and hid the pieces among the dunes near Scheveningen. Commander Theo velissen who headed the police investigation stated that the attack was carried out for money. One of RNI's owners, Mr. Erwin Meister, said that he did not want to name the people he thought were responsible "but I have my suspicions in a certain direction". (Although the Mebo II was outside territorial waters the Dutch police were able to act because of the international laws concerning piracy on the high seas).
On Monday 17th May Amsterdam police arrested Norbert Jurgens, the 48 year old advertising manager of Radio Veronica. It was beginning to look as if Veronica, having lost her court case against RNI, had decided to take the law into her own hands. The highly respected Radio Veronica had been going at this time for over 10 years, and had such a strong following in Holland that no government had dared to try to close the station. Veronica's apparent involvement in the RNI attack was doing great damage to her cause. Hence the attempts to "come clean" by one of the Veronica directors, Hendrick "Bull" Verwey. On TV and in the Press he freely admitted paying £10,000 to get the Mebo II brought into territorial waters where it would have been silenced and liable to seizure by creditors (including Veronica who claimed the million guilders paid to RNI the previous year). Mr. Verwey went to great lengths to emphasise that he had ordered that there was to be no violence, "we are not gangsters". He suggested that the objective could have been achieved by using two ships with a chain between to tow the Mebo II in.
Mr. Bull Verwey was arrested. When he and the other four appeared in court on 20th May the public prosecutor described the events as "like something out of the 17th century".
On Thursday 27th May the Dutch Prime Minister Piet de Jong announced that action would be taken to outlaw the offshore stations. He claimed that this decision was not the result of recent events. True or not, the bomb attack would obviously have stiffened his resolve and lessened public opposition to the proposed action. Sensing the danger the Veronica DJ's sent a widely published letter to the Press regretting the attack on RNI and appealing to the public for their support in Veronica's fight to remain on the air.
It was decided to repair the Mebo II at sea. The alternative would have meant stopping transmissions, and could have lead to the ship being seized. Repairs got under way about the middle of June, the dozen Dutch workers being housed in the Mebo I which was moored alongside.
In early September there was a report in the Dutch Press that the Swiss owners of RNI had written to the public prosecutor asking him not to be too hard on the bombers. The two stations were said to be on friendly terms now, and Veronica had agreed to pay for the repairs to the Mebo II. On 21st September the five responsible for the bombing were each sentenced to one year in jail. Apart from Bull Verwey and Norbert Jurgens and two younger men, there was Tom van der Linden, also known as "Captain Tom", a one time friend of RNI.
Listeners to RNI's short wave broadcasts in the 49 and 31 metre bands normally heard the same as medium wave listeners. However, on the last Sunday of each month there was a different programme on short wave in the mornings. This was entitled Nordsee Goes DX, presented by A. J. Beirens and containing such features as DX Information, Feature Station of the month, P.O. Box 113 Calling Thee (correspondence column), and The History of Offshore Radio where the stories of these stations were related and recordings played. The very first of these DX programmes went out three days before RNI closed in 1970, they restarted on 21st March 1971. At the end of June a World Service was started on Sundays on short wave, hosted by the English DJ's while Dutch programmes went out on MW and FM. The World Service ceased at the end of December 1971 without explanation.
At the beginning of October stories circulated in the Dutch and English Press about the Dutch Government studying intelligence reports suggesting that RINI was a cover for spying activities and it had been passing secret messages. Two factors helped these most unlikely stories originate, Mebo Ltd. who make electrical components carried on legitimate business with East Germany, and Kurt Baer who is a keen radio "ham" sometimes transmitted on SW at night. The main factor in fanning these rumours
was a DJ who had recently rejoined RNI only to be sacked a few days later. The spreading of the damaging rumours seemed to be his method of getting his own back. He was quoted as saying that RNI's broadcasting "only serves to cover up spying activities".
Not least among the problems offshore stations have to face is the sea itself. Often the only clue to the casual listener sitting comfortably at home when the sea gets rough is the sound of things falling over in the studio when the microphone is "open". Sometimes it gets too rough and the station has to o off the air, and life and limb may even be at stake. Such was the case on the morning of Monday 22nd November, 1971. The Mebo II had been riding out a Force 11 storm for over a day when at 7.50 a.m. the anchor chain snapped. The ship was been blown towards the beach by the north-west windy Captain Hardefeld sent a distress call to Scheveningen Radio, and Leo van der Goot did likewise over the air just before programmes had to stop because the ship was inside territorial waters. Everyone was ordered to gather on the bridge and at about 8.30 a.m. the lifeboat Bernard van Leer came alongside but rescue was impossible because the sea was so rough. A Neptune aircraft circled the ship and they were told that there was a helicopter standing by should it become necessary to abandon ship. Also a tug was on its way. It took over an hour to start the Mebo II's engines, a process which required compressed air. With the engines running at last they tried to turn the radioship into the storm. They started to make slow headway literally yards from a sandbank which would have been the end of the Mebo and RNI, and even more important, possibly some of the people on board. One account given at the time suggested they had drifted 17 miles down the coast.
When they had managed to get further out to sea they tried to put down an anchor, but it would not hold. At 2.45 p.m. the tug Smith Bank got the Mebo II under tow and away from immediate danger. Dutch programmes resumed at 4.30pm, though not on shortwave because the aerial had been lost. When the English Service started, Paul May, who was obviously and not surprisingly suffering from shock, gave an account of what had happened. In spite of their experiences all the DJ's managed to put on a good show, in fact broadcasts continued all night with the Mebo under tow. On Tuesday the tug Thames relieved the Smith Bank. On Wednesday evening the Mebo II, now back in its original position off Scheveningen, was fitted with a new anchor. Once again RNI had defied death and survived.
On 24th November the Dutch paper "De Telegraaf" carried a report that Veronica had dropped her million guilder loan claim.
In a DJ Poll in "Record Mirror" at the end of November RNI DJ's past and present were well placed. No.1 was Roger "Twiggy" Day although he had not been on the radio for over a year! No.2 was Dave Rogers, and other placings of relevance to RNI were 8 Alan West, 10 Crispian St. John, 13 Stevi Merike, 15 Mark Wesley, 16 Mark Stuart, 18 Mike Ross, 19 Andy Archer, 30 Paul May, 33 Dave Gregory, 36 Ferry Maat, & 40 Rob Eden. Christmas 1971 was the first on the air for RNI and large advertisements appeared in the music Press saying "The DJ's, crew and technical staff on board the Radio Ship Mebo 2 and all at Radio Northsea's offices in Hilversum and Zurich send Christmas greetings and the best in radio for the New Year to our advertisers and listeners. Thank you for your support". This was surrounded by the names of the current RNI DJ's, "Tony Berk, Terry Davis, Joost de Draaier, Rob Eden, Leo van der Goot, Hans Ten Hooge, Peter Holland, ferry Maat, Paul May, Brian McKenzie, Dave Rogers, Mike Doss, Nico Steenbergen, Joost Verhoeven".
And so yet another eventful year in the history of Radio Nordsee International drew to a close.(To be continued)
***The latest news we have from Slikkerveer, where the "Mebo II" remains birthed, is that the legal battle between Messrs. Bollier & Meister and the Authorities is continuing unabated. The radio-ship now has a new Dutch skipper, he is Captain Peter Gijsbertsen, who informed our correspondent in Rotterdam that the intention is still to sail the ship to The Gambia eventually.
We have just been listening to the latest double LP dedicated to an offshore radio station. This one is all about VE RONICA, and comprises both sides of one record entirely of well-known tunes used by the station as programme themes, one side containing 100 veronica jingles and one side of memorable airchecks covering Veronica's fourteen years on the air. Included on the compilation are "We Love The Pirates" by the Roaring Sixties, the RNI theme "Man of Action" and guest appearances from many internationally famous artists, such as the rolling Stones and Teach-In. Inside the fold-out sleeve you will find photos of many people who have been involved with the station over the years. To say it is a must for all Veronica fans is the cliche of the year but ... if you hear it, you will want it. To obtain it you will need to send an International Money Order for 35 Guilders to FRC Holland, P.O. Box 9460, The Hague, Holland.
Here we are again with details of where many of our old offshore friends are working now. We find that some have left radio altogether, such as JOHN HARDING who's working as a car salesman in London and DEREK JONES who's still in Vlissingen, now holding down the position of barman in a club there. However their fellow ATLANTIS shipmate ROB RONDER can still be heard on the air every Sunday on ABC his first programme was on September 7th.
BOB NOAKES is now back in Holland after his stay on the Peace Ship. He informs us "I'm working now in an ice-cream and deep-frozen food cold store (-200c). It's a change from the tropics of the Middle East! it's not fascinating work but pays a living wage". We hope we'll be hearing you on the air again soon, Bob! ROBIN BANKS is hopeful that the MEBO 11 will soon once again require his services. He has been working in the Forest of Dean for Rank-Zerox, the photocopier manufacturers, but the job never held for him the attraction of radio. He told us "The work is rather boring because I have to get up by half past five in the morning, but I'm sticking it out as I hope that it won't be for very much longer. I'm phoning Herr Bollier for news on the Mebo, but they're not terribly optimistic. They've been given permission to leave the harbour, but they most pay the harbour dues; they're between a quarter and half a million pounds; that includes some of the work that's been done on the ship. I think it will sail, but if it does sail this year it's going to have to sail pretty soon. If it doesn't it'll have to go in the Spring. That's far too long; 1 couldn't possibly bear to stay at Rank-Zerox for that time!". But Robin hasn’t had to, for shortly after that he was lucky enough to get the chance to join the good ship PEACE, so now while we are enjoying (?) the winter here in the Northern hemisphere Robin is soaking up the Mediterranean! All the best from your shivering friends, Robin! Another piece of info passed onto us by Robin is that BRIAN McKenzie is now working two nights a week at the EMPIRE BALLROOM in London, and his wife Jean is freelance modelling. "She's a quite talented girl. They’re a very happy couple so life in general for Brian is quite good". Also employed in a nightclub is PAUL ALEXANDER whose currently spending most of his evenings helping to entertain the clientele of BAILEYS high-class establishment in downtown Hull (phone g 0402-24000). Next time you come down to see us, Paul, don't forget to bring a bunny girl or two with you...
On the Dutch scene, some Noordzee people who're into something interesting are TED BOUWENS, PETER HOLLAND and MARC VAN AMSTEL, who work freelance for a company which produces background tapes for big stores and supermarkets. ERIC POST works as a technician for the same company. NOS radio benefits sometimes from the talents of NICO but he's working basically as a journalist. NOS also employs HANS MOLE-NARR, as a newsreader, and it's VARA. who, on both TV and Radio, present ALFRED LAGARDE On their news-shows. if you've tuned into the short-wave service of RADIO NETHERLANLD lately you may have recognised a couple of familiar voices, as both ALAN CLARK and GRAHAM GILL can be heard on the station at times, usually interviewing or newsreading. We should not forget the 208 ton m.v.LUXEMBOURG,which over the past few years has become the home of many of our old shipmates. Current ex-offshore broadcasters on the station are MARK "Wild and Woolly" WESLEY (whose hometown is here in Benfleet! Hi, Mark!), previously with Radio's ESSEX, 270 & NORTHSEA; STUART HENRY of RADIO SCOTLAND fame; TONY PRINCE and "Baby" BOB STUART, both from CAROLINE NORTH; DUNCAN JOHNSON, famous on RNI and RADIO LONDON and last but by no means least their latest acquisition is our old CAROLINE and RNI friend SPANGLES MALDOON. His first programme was July 15th, and he was joined in the Grand Duchy a few weeks later by his lovely wife KAT and their six-year-old daughter LOUISE. As Paul Alexander commented to us "Spangles Maldoon brought that essential essence of lunacy of real waffle (not your type, Suzi!) to Luxembourg a few weeks ago. PLUG: If you'd like this lunacy to continue, write to KEN EVANS and tell him you never listened to Luxembourg, until Spangles joined! The address is 36 Hertford Street, London W17 8BA". Ken Evans is Programme Director for 208; he used to hold an identical position with RADIO LONDON.
The opening date for the Ipswich IBA station RADIO OREWELL is October 28th. Amongst the goodies in store for us are ANDY DAWSON, GREG BANCE, DAVE KEITH ROGERS and possibly JOHNNY JASON. Our congratulations go out to Johnny for gaining 7th place in
the recent MM poll - quite an achievement, beating even Kenny Everett! Nice one, Johnny! He has since leaving Caroline been spending a considerable amount of time in Newcastle as a relief DJ On METRO RADIO, where, in the words of Tony Allan, he's been "injecting some superb music into their format". Keith, as we reported in our last issue, worked for a time with RADIO CITY in Liverpool. What about Greg? Well, he's been moving around a lot since his days of being Arnold Layne on RNI and Roger Scott on Radio's ESEX, 390, 270 & CAROLINE NORTH. Just lately we've heard him newsreading on LBC, and he also did a weekend's relief announcing on LONDON WEEKEND TV on August 9th & 10th. Andy, before joining Orwell and after leaving behind him his well-loved personality of Andy Archer on RADIO CAOLINE, has been working on TYNE TEES' TV in Newcastle.
He's also been making commercials with TONY ALLAN and BRIANSON at one point all three were working together in the same RADIO TEES studio at 74 Dovecot Street, Stockton-on-Tees Both Radio Tees and Metro Radio have been receiving many letters from fans saying how nice it is to hear the lads on the air again! Tony now has a job with RADIO FORTH in Edinburgh, where our friend IAN ANDERSON is Senior Presenter. He told us "Ian put the whole thing together for me. I'm quite chuffed actually; I'm being given a bit of freedom. I'm doing the afternoon show for a bit; after that !I’ll maybe do something else, I danno. I'm going to stay there at least a year, I think maybe longer". Tony's first show was the review programme, with Ian, on August 15th.
Other IBA, stations employing old shipmates on their broadcasting staff include BRMB in Birmingham, who air a Sunday night C & W show presented by BRENDON POWER, formerly with 270; and RADIO ANTILLES (a 200 kW commercial station in Montserrat, B.W.I. );
and RALIO VICTORY in Portsmouth. They've gained the services of ex-SCOTLAND man JACK McLAUGHLIN from (if you'd believe it!) Radio 2, where he became a newsreader after leaving GRAMPIAN TV, and KENNY EVERETT who's supplying taped shows for them in addition to continuing his live programmes on CAPITAL. RADIO TRENT in Nottingham have for their Programme Director BOB SNYDER, who was previously with PICCADILLY RADIO in Manchester and originally with 2701 and RNI's STEVE KING sometimes presents programmes for METRO in Newcastle. IBA radio is benefiting from offshore experience on the technical side too; JOHN ASTON of ESSEX, BRITAIN and CAROLINE NORTH fame, is now in sound equipment, and it's his equipment that is always used when SOUND do any outside broadcasts. Likewise RADIO VICTORY depend on RUSSELL TOLLERFIELD, ex-RADIO LONDON, as their chief engineer. YORKSHIRE TV now have a weekly quiz programme, "Pop Quest", compered by none other than our old friend from RNI and CAROLINE, STEVE MERIKE. The first show of this networked production was screened on September 12th. Steve also has a show on PENNINE RADIO in Bradford; so does ROGER KIRK, who, you may remember was with RNI for one (!) day in 1971. At the time he was an engineer with the BBC, but he later moved on to better things, namely a similar position with CAPITAL.
DON still has his regular C & W show on BBC Radio MERSEYSIDE; when he's not too busy with that he also finds time to do disco's both on the Isle of Man and on the mainland. We hear from ex-CAROLINE man JOHN B. MAIR that he's new employed as a Vessel Movement Co-ordinator, operating the Peterhead-based VHF link which controls a fleet of barges laying oil pipelines off the Scottish coast. Sounds very interesting, John!
Ex-RNI favourite MARK STUART now has his own shop at 166 Edward Street, Brighton which under the impressive title of "Maldwyn Bowden Associates, Ltd." trades in discotheque and lighting equipment - if you need any he'll no doubt be pleased to hear from you at Brighton 67304. You may also see him sometime with CRIS ST. JOHN, as together they runa discotheque roadshow, according to Cris "about the size of the RNT thing", called SOX. Another shop you'll find in Brighton is "Sound Unlimited", a record shop. This is run by DAVE GILBEE, who also has a programme on BBC Radio BRIGHTON, and TONY MONSON. Both worked on BAITAIN RADIO, Dave under the name DAVE McKAY; he was also with CITY for a time using his real name.
Many people have asked us where MIKE ROSS is nowadays. Well we don't know! He with his wife SHEILA and their baby son JASON, were last heard of living in Reading where Mike was working for Top Rank. So if anyone has any more up-to-date details, let us know and we'll pass the info on. Likewise if you happen to know the whereabouts of any other old shipmates we're always pleased to hear about it, and we'd like to thankeverybody who has provided us with information for this article.
RECORD REVIEW"RADIO CAROLINE – THE OFFICIAL STORY"
This double LP is packed with facts; no space is wasted on music but amongst dozens of jingles you will hear the complete history of Caroline related by the people who know it best. A large part of this two-tour recording is taken up by RONAN himself, to explain how Caroline has got on the air and stayed there and why; the basic ideas and beliefs that have given him and other workers on Caroline the dedication to make it possible. As you follow the story you should understand why the station is described on the sleeve, beneath one of the full-colour photos of the boats, as "The Voice of
Loving Awareness Radiating from the North Sea". The story is not presented in strictly chronological order, neither is it entirely accurate at all points. But don't let that stop you from treating your ears to this complete story of Caroline by parting with £4.30 for the record set or £4-80 for cassettes in the direction of East Anglian Productions, 7 Horsey Road, Kirby-le-Soken, Frinton-on-Sea, Essex CO13 ODZ
F-R.C. PUBLICITY MATERIAL
Now available:- Caroline Car Stickers 3 for 5p or 50 for 35P; Caroline/Mi. Amigo Picture Posters 10p each or 10 for 90p. Please add extra for postage. Photo-Poster of the "Pirate Ships Off The Dutch Coast" measuring 3 X 2ft @ £l-10 inc. postage; & the latest RNI Souvenir book (over 96 photos but text in Dutch @ £1.75 inc. postage. All these items are obtainable from Free Radio Campaign, BM-FRC, London WC1V 6XX. The editor of Newscaster asks no to point out that there was no external censorship in the last issue; the ‘overprinting’ was to avoid upsetting the DJ'sbefore the court case.
Playa de Aro, August 1975. Although it is not as hot as in North-blest Europe thousands have come from Holland, Belgium and France to spend their holidays here. It is a tourist village on the Costa Brava situated between Palamos in the North and San Feliu de Guixols in the South, and it has a very active Mayor. He organised the "Days of Love" festivals to attract visitors from abroad in the off-season; out of goodwill MiAmigo broadcast some spots to promote these Days, and when the Mayor received about 12,500 cards from the Benelux it dawned upon him that something very special had come to his village.
On entering Playa from the South, the first thing you see, about half a mile from the centre of the village, is the "PACHA" discotheque. During June and July the DJ's taped programmes in the Pacha, starting at about 8 o'clock as the first part of the evenings entertainment. But the season gradually came to an end and there were not enough tourists to play to so these recording session ended. In Playa, the signs tell you that to get to the "Urbanizacion Mas Nou" you must take the first main road on the left, the Carretera de Santa Christina, inthe direction of Castillo de Aro. When you turn into this road and pass the Post Office which is almost on the corner you see just a few yards further on the MI AMIGO SHOP. It is located in a recently built block of shops and apartments and in the shop window there is a notice saying "Radio Mi Amigo. Studio visits: from Monday to Friday only in the mornings from 10 to 12; closed afternoons". The shop itself, where they have for sale such things as Mi Amigo sailing-ships, stickers, T-shirts, postcards, key rings and cassettes of programmes that have been aired, is open daily from 10.00- to 12.00 and 18.00 to 21.00 except Sundays. Inside the shop you will find comfortable chairs, a desk, a fitting room and of course cupboards full of T-shirts in all sizes, and bottles of Fixobrun sun-tan lotion. On the walls are posters publicising the "Costa Brava Drive-in Show", the m.v. Mi Amigo and Lois jeans. Mrs. Jacqueline Tack can often be found there acting as hostess to the tourists and giving them all kinds of information. about Radio Mi Amigo.
When you want to visit the studios, the shop is a good place to start.Two hundred yards down the road you turn right at the "Star-Mercado" supermarket, and for the next mile the roadway slowly rises up to the foot of the hills. Mas Nou is the name of the range of hills and of the clusters of big villas, mostly owned by Belgians, that have been built on the hillsides facing the sea. Right at the top is a restaurant. At the "entrance" to the Mas Nou, at the foot of the hills, stands the villa where Stan and his family live. The road is new, and lined with lampposts; its slope is about one-in-ten. Not far from the top, at Mas Nou 108, you see a two-story villa partly built into the rocks. Downstairs are the offices belonging to the company that sells the building-sites on the Mas Nou. A couple of stairs carved out of the rocks take you up to a very large terrace above; from there you can see as far as Palamos! There is a fence separating the terrace from a small courtyard, and into this courtyard several doors open. You will find Bert and Peter's studios there in a kind of outhouse; but you need to go through the kitchen and hall and down the stairs to find the studios occupied by Joop and Michelle and Stan. Right in the middle of the villa is the bathroom, and when you sit on the toilet in there you can hear the sound from all four studios at once; also on the ground floor, which is partially built into the rocks, is the Mi Amigo office.
The first person you meet is Gea, who shows you around, and if you would like to you can write your name in the "dedication book"; every Sunday Michelle reads out the dedications, mostly for friends at home, in her programme "Greetings from Playa de Aro". The tourists may look around in each studio for about a quarter of an hour before Gea gently asks them to move on, for there are more people waiting outside. Sometimes there are several hundred visitors per day, which is quite a strain on the DJ's as it makes it very hard to concentrate. That not all of the visitors really know what the Mi Amigo boys are doing, at Mas Nou 108 is made obvious by the questions that can be heard such as "Sir, where is the mast here, can you tell me that?", and "Are we on the air now?".
The programmes are recorded about two weeks in advance and every day each DJ tapes four hours. Studio time is from about 8.30 until 2.00 both morning and evening. Each DJ has hisown studio with records, tapes and equipment. STUDIO ONE, inhabited by PETER VAN DAM, is also the production studio; it houses two Garrard 401 turntables, one Electrovoice microphone, one A-400 Spotmaster, one SIS S-100 (H) cartridge machine, one Akai 4000-GX, one TEAC-3300, one TEAC cassette deck, & one rebuilt Faylon mixer, entirely stereo.
STUDIO TW0, home of BERT BENNETT, comprises two Garrard 401 turntables, one Sennheiser microphone, one Revox A-77, one Akai 1720-L, two Spotmaster Three 70’s, one BASF S200 cassette deck, & one Ela Ljud mixer. JOOP VERHOOF’S pigeonhole, STUDIO THREE, contains two Garrard 401 turntables, one AKG microphone D-202, one Spotmaster Series 2000, one Spotmaster Three 70, one Revox A-77, one Akai 4000-GX, one Sanyo Dolby CrO-2 cassette deck, & one Ela Ljud mixer (much modified.). STUDIO FOUR has an extra
accessory; technician MURICE BOKKEBROEK. He is needed because STAN HAAG and MICHELLE have so many letters to answer that they just have not any free hands to operate the equipment! Maurice is in charge of two Micro MR-611 Belt-drive turntables, one Sennheiser microphone, one SIS S-100 (H) Mk.III cartridge machine, one BE Series 2000 Spotmaster, one Revox A-77, one BASF 8200 Dolby Cr02 cassette deck, & a Swiss-built Difona 9 channel mixer. Maurice also rebuilt or adapted much of the equipment used in the Mi Amigo studios.
In February of this year the studios were moved from Belgium to Spain, but the removal was not an ordinary one; while the engineer was taking the studios apart the Police arrived. Peter van Dam, the only Belgian DJ who has remained with the station, was detained for two days. During that time the detectives ordered him to play the tapes they had taken from the Mi Amigo studios because they did not know how to work the taperecorders. Peter co-operated; but he made sure to press the recording button so that all their heard for hours on end was erased tapes! Maurice, Bert and Joop had a narrow escape; when they saw the Police at the studio they just left immediately for Spain, taking with them only the clothes they had on, a studio clock, a taperecorder, a couple of microphones and trunks filled with records!
During the first couple of weeks of February the only up-to-date programmes on Mi Amigo were Stan's recorded in Belgium, and they had to be repeated several times because new ones did not arrive on the ship.
In Spain everything had to be organised anew, and studios built and equipped with apparatus purchased locally. By now everything runs smoothly again. However they all have good faith in the future. Peter expressed it on September 1st like this: "This is the Peter van Dam Show, second volume, part one!" Keep counting, Peter!
It's August 31st, just one year after the Dutch ratification of the Treaty of Strasbourg put an end to broadcasting from the coastline of Holland and Belgium, despite the gallant resistance efforts of the free radio fans in the low countries. But free radio still survives, and the occasion is marked by a number of special broadcasts. This Sunday we're up bright and early to get our radios warmed up and tuned to 6250 kHz to hear the commemorative transmission from ABC EUROPE. This is a four-hour historic feature entitled "The Saga of the Stations of the Sea", produced and presented by our old friend A. J. BEIRNES, ably assisted by fellow-Belgian PIERRE DESEYN. They take us through the embryonic stages of the offshore era; a graphic account of the growth of freedom of the airwaves, up until the present time when the lone voice from the North Sea is that of the good ship Mi Amigo. It is an entertaining and, at times, emotional programme; half-forgotten memories are recalled by airchecks from every offshore station. It is tinged with sadness as once-familiar voices are heard again... The free radio fraternity is indebted to AJ and Pierre for their hard work over the years on our behalf, and we thank them for such a memorable production; probably the longest free radio documentary ever broadcast. It ends at 14.00 CET; long enough to have a cup of tea and a Suzi Wafel before 16.30, when RADIO MI AMIGO donates half an hour of airtime for the first of a new series of Sunday afternoon programmes furnished by the "VERENTIGING VOOR VRIJE RADIO" (Association for Free Radio), a joint Belgian-Dutch enterprise, which publishes the magazine "Baffle". The show begins with idents and personalised jingles from Veronica, RNI & Atlantis, which are followed by airchecks from all three stations. By keeping the chat to a minimum the tapes are allowed to speak for themselves; the entire thirty-minute programme is appreciated by all listeners, from whichever side of the North Sea they hail. This must be one of the best recordings quality-wise ever to be heard on the station. Many of the jingles come over much clearer than we ever heard them on their original stations! The PETER VAN DAM show follows immediately after this tribute, and Peter too does not let the date pass unnoticed, nor does he submerge it in superfluous talk. Today he devotes his programme to an hour of non-stop music appropriate to the occasion, such as "We Love the Pirate Stations" & "Catch Us If You Can". This latter number is particularly fitting in view of Peter's numerous hassles with the Belgian Authorities during the past year!
And so this day of golden memories ends, leaving us confident that, regardless of the machinations of any Government, Free Radio lives and will always continue!
***Vereniging Voor Vrije Radio is an organisation that has grown from the amalgamation of several small free radio groups in Belgium & Holland. John Troukens, VVVR's foreignliason officer, tells us how the Sunday programme was started: "We got in touch with Mr. Tack himself and were invited to Spain; Jean-Luc Bostyn & Frans Schuurbiers went in July. They now play our spots regularly over Mi Amigo. We're selling souvenir-things of the Playa de Aro - Mi Amigo shop. Mr. Tack decided to recognise us as the only representative Free Radio Organisation. There will be some more - just listen to Mi Amigo". VVVR are also setting up their own disco, and every two months publish a magazine. This is only available in the Dutch language but we recommend it to all who can read it! For further details send an IRC to "Vereniging Voor Vrije Radio", Postbus 21, B-1050 Elsene 2, BELGIUM.
In our last edition, we reported that the Peace Ship had ceased broadcasting and had sailed into Haifa harbour in an effort to raise funds. Soon after that we received' a letter, from BOB MAKES, who left the ship when it entered Haifa and is now resident in Amsterdam. He included some interesting details of the first transmissions when he sailed with the Voice of Peace from Frances "We left Marseilles on Wednesday, 28th May, and got the transmitters warmed up as soon as we'd left the harbour. By about 12.30 we were on with the 'Give Peace a Chance' loop, and at 13.00 we played a special recorded farewell-and-thanks programme which Able had made in harbour. When that ended at about 13.48 Abie came on and introduced all the crew - every mare on board was a signed crew member, I was an AB - reading our names from the crew roll and saying what we'd done in the past and where we came from. At about 13.55 I took a: programme until 16.00 and then Keith until 18.00 when we played the tape again. After that Able did a bit of a chat and we closed at about 19.30. Our programmes at this time were strange because we had to play French top-forty music about which we knew nothing. We had planned to broadcast through the night but the engines of the ship' were vibrating the transmitter parts and 'vibrating' our programmes also! To reduce this we reduced speed, but the Captain, an Englishman called Len Clements, reckoned that at that speed we could not reach Port Said on time (by 5th June). So we only broadcast for a few hours the next day, and then stayed off until we were about 48 hours from Port Said".
KEITH ASHTOH left at the same time and flew with Bob to London, but he returned three weeks later to be on the ship when it resumed broadcasting.
The first news to reach us of the return to the airwaves was via the BBC's "World Radio Club" programme,, which is transmitted weekly between 00.15-00.30 BST/CET, on 275•7 metres (1088 kHz). In their August 7th edition mention was made of the fact that their Receiving Station at Caversham had noted the return of the V.O.P. and that it had been heard broadcasting on 1540 kHz at 20.00 GMT, but no date was given. We phoned, Caversham the following day for further details, and were most helpfully supplied with the information we requested, namely the date they had first heard these broadcasts, which was August 1st. "Sweden calling DX'ers", on 254•7 metres (1178 kHz) every Tuesday evening, reported on August 12th that "The Peace Ship has left Haifa port with fuel.
for 5 months on board,'The Voice of Peace' resumed broadcasting on the first of August, and can now be heard daily from 03.00 until 23.00 hrs. GMT on MW 1540 kHz, The station now also carries commercials". Yet another reference was made to the station in the same programme a week later. Bob confirms that adverts are now being broadcast: "Able has managed to get some commercials and has taken the ship out again. It left on Friday, August 1st. He asked Keith and I to return and even sent us tickets but I couldn't afford to go". Our congratulations to Caversham on finding the station on its first day of broadcasting!
After hearing the BBC report we tuned immediately to 1540, but nothing was audible. However 20 hours later, to the accompaniment of the familiar heterodyne, we found programming in English in progress. At 20.25 BST/CET, "Sweet Caroline" was played, and between 20.30 and 20.35, we heard ABIE NATHAM make an appeal for £50,000 to keep the project alive, At 21.30 we enjoyed a programme of "Arab and Western" music introduced in Arabic, and then the station ceased transmissions at 00.03, signing-off with the Goodnight song that at one time had been used by Luxembourg for the same purpose. All time-checks were two hours ahead of BST/CST.
We found we could listen to the station every night after that, until September 16th when the absence of even a heterodyne indicated to us that either the station was off the air, or the ship had moved out of our range. We assumed that the latter was the case, as there had been a report on ITV News three days previously which, giving the project a considerable amount of publicity, evulgated that the Ship was about to make a second attempt to sail through the Egyptian waterway, this time laden with flowers. That same day, September 13th, the "Daily Telegraph" gave the news "Hundreds of Israelis, representing many sections of society, presented the flowers to Mr. Abie Nathan. When he arrives at Port Said he will radio an appeal to President Sadat to be allowed to sail his ship along the Suez Canal. ‘I want to show that Israelis want to meet Egyptians with flowers, not guns', he said". The "Sunday Telegraph" the next day carried a photograph of Abie watching wellwishers load flowers aboard his ship.
But the m.v. Peace was not allowed to traverse the canal, and so returned to its anchorage off the coast of Israel. The transmissions were again audible in England from September 20th, whenwe logged a weak signal at 23.14 BST/CET; and since mid-October it has been receivable here from as early as 17.30 BST. We discover that the ship is now broadcasting 24 hours a day. The programmes are in several languages, including Arabic, French and Hebrew, but most are in English. One of the broadcasters currently on board is SIMON WARD, who previously worked as Traffic Manager for Radio Forth, He went out in September as a replacement for Australian FRANS DE WOLFE who had joined the Voice of Peace before it left Marseilles. Frans used to work on the P & 0 liner
"Oriana" as a floating DJ, and he mentioned to his friend Keith Ashton that he would like to, join the Peace Ship for awhile; Keith told ROBB EDEN, who is one of Abie's representatives in England, and Robb got him the job.Robb also tells us that BILL BENSON has stayed with the ship right alongs although he still does not do any broadcasting on the station. He is fully employed on the engineering side; a couple of months ago he fitted a capacity hat to the top of the mast which has considerably improved the station's signal as the aerial can now be loaded more efficiently. In the United Kingdom, reception is better between 20.00 and 22.30 BST/CET, when the transmitter at Mainflingen on 1538 kHz, which is the cause of the heterodyne and most of the interference, realigns its antenna system to broadcast to Poland, Czechoslovaki Yugoslavia, Romania & Hungary, and so produces its weakest signal in our direction.
If you listen hard enough you will hear that the currently correct mailing address for the station is P.O. Box 4309, Tel Aviv, Israel.
Now for a few details about the m.v. "Peace" herself, investigated for us by our intrepid agent in London with the aid of Lloyd's Shipping Register... She was built of riveted steel at Gebr. van Diepen shipyard in Waterhuizen, completed in April 1940 and named "Rolf". This name was changed in 1950 to "Westpolder", and changed again to "Cito" in 1960. This name was kept until the Shalom Peace Foundation came into possession of the ship in 1969. She is 188 feet long, 27 feet 10 inches wide, 354 gross tons and equipped with a direction-finder, radar, and a high-frequency radio telephone. She is registered in Panama and somewhere along her two decks you will find two cargo winches and two 2 ton derricks. The generator is a 5kW, 110 V, Klockner-HumboldtDeutz, and in 1954 she was fitted with a new 4-stroke, single acting, 6 cylinder,
500 bhp oil engine. After all that what more can we say? Just "Long Live the Voice of Peace"!__
The' big news in the free radio world at the moment is the prosecutions of ex-Caroline personel and persons who have allegedly helped supply the station. But before we look at this subject, let us see what has been happening actually on the ship.
New people who have recently joined Caroline are MICHAEL LLOYD, NIGEL ELGIN and ROBBIE DUKE. Michael, whose first programme was on July 30th at 19.00-22.00 BST/CET, is an American from Ithaca, New York, where he has, worked for WVBR--FM. Nigel began his career on Caroline with the 01.00-02.00 BST show on July 31st, and it was on September 7th at 00.00-02.00 BST that we first heard Robbie on the air. The first day of August saw an entirely new star shine for Caroline; at 01.00 BST that morning the BERLIN SERVICE took to the air, introduced by President Kennedy's famous speech "Every free man, wherever he may live, is a citizen of Berlin, This is why I, as 'a free man, take pride in the words 'Ich haben ein Berliner'".This first programme, and the second eight days later, were introduced by American-accented JACK O'BRIEN. The third edition, on August 16th, was brought to us by none other than our old friend DENNIS KING. During these early programmes the studios in Berlin were still in the process of being built, and the workmen could be heard during the links! The Berlin Service soon progressed from one hour a week to three hours, at 01.00-02.00 BST/GET on Saturday, Sunday and Monday mornings.The address of the Berlin Service is P.O. Box 1551, D-46 Dortmund 1, West Germany.
Ronan had a surprise present for us on Bank Holiday Sunday, August 24th, For that morning saw the return of transmissions on 389 metres. Although the power was very low the music reached well into London, Essex, Kent and most of the fast coast of England, and a weak signal could be received in the Benelux. Since then the tests have continued nearly every day, sometimes on higher power, sometimes lower, as various technical problems are being worked on - and, we hope, solved one by one... We do not have any date as yet for the commencement of full programming on the channel, so just keep on listening out; I know we are all looking forward to a brand new English Service once the transmitter is tuned to its full capacity of 10 kW. On behalf of our readers we send love and good wishes to everyone who is working so hard on board for our benefit. Caroline still has a great future before her!
Voices we have lost from Caroline lately are DON STEVENS, JOHNNY JASON and TO ALLAN. Tony was last heard on Caroline on May 15th; don't ask us how many hours he has worked on the station since the Return in 1972, it is far too complicated to work out! J.J's total airtime has been 958 hours between his first programme on June 17th 1973 and his last on June 14th this year, which included his time on Seagull. Although Don was only with Caroline a very short time, from March 3rd to April 26th this year,
managed to pack in a total 239 hours on the air in those few weeks! Well done, Don!
Sunday, September 14th brought a piece of excitement of the wrong type on the North Sea. Some yachts went out a-sailing; and two of them got into difficulties. Caroline lads saw one of them floating past out of control, and sent out SOS messages about it. These broke into the recorded programmes on 259 and were simulcast on 389. "We interrupt these programmes with an emergency call from the Radio-ship Mi Amigo. We have sighted a yacht which just passed us about five minutes ago which seems to be in
great difticulty because of the bad weather out here,..It was letting off flares... It’s about 7 miles South of us now.,. If any of you listening could ring up your local Coast-guards we'd appreciate it very much because these people are in dire trouble and we'd really like to help them... It didn't come close enough to us for us to help it", The position of the Mi Amigo was given, 1 degree 35' East; 51 degrees 42•51’ North. Between 16.48 and 17.53 BST a total of 8 messages were broadcast, and within that time two yachts were rescued; The Coast-guard helicopter that flew out from RAF Manston in Kent went first to a yacht North of the Mi Amigo, which, unknown to Caroline, was also in trouble. We understand that this yacht was the "Coronay", and the first one, which had broken her steering gear, was the "Tsunami". At the begira4mg of the Radio Caroline programme that evening, warning was given to small boats not to attempt to sail out around the Mi Amigo new that the weather is so unpredictable.
"Sailors and airmen joined forces in a massive 'combined op' to protect Britain Eastern approaches from piracy. A 'spy' trawler, a helicopter, and a mass of sophisticated monitoring equipment tracked a 'pirate vessel’ - the Radio Caroline pop ship Mi Amigo as it sailed to the mouth of the Thames and began broadcasting 20 miles, off South-end. Then police launches swooped on their quarry - two disc jockeys being ferried ashore in a small boat. And later two other men were stopped by a launch near Brightlingsea, Essex'. No: That's not the scenario of a Gilbert and Sullivan comic opera, but,.'just the way the "Sun" saw a real-life situation in its report of September,19th. The situation in question is the way Caroline is currently being hounded through the courts of England. The cases have so far been given extensive Press coverage, and the story can be told. just by quoting these papers. To begin with, advance news of the first case was given on Sept, 13th in both the "Daily Mirror" and the "East Anglian Daily Times" and on Sept, 15th by the Southend "Evening Echo". The "Mirror" descibed the operation as, "A big new crackdown on pirate radio stations". The "Echo" was the first to make a report on the case on the day it began, September 16th; and the following day it carried a detailed description of the proceedings. But possibly the most complete account appeared in the "East Anglian Daily Times": "Two former Radio Caroline` disc jockeys' and a man who supplied records to the pirate pop ship were each fined £100 with £50 costs at Southend court yesterday. They were the first prosecutions under the 1967 Marine Broadcasting Offences Act. Another man was fined £25 with £10 costs for carrying a person from the radio ship, the Mi Amigo. The ex-DJ's were Andrew Dawson - radio name Andy Archer, 29, of Priory Street, Colchester, and John Mair, 25, of Queen Street, Peterhead Aberdeen. Both admitted taking part in broadcasting from the Mi Amigo on the high seas between September and October last year. Broadcaster Michael Baker, 25, of St. John's; Avenue, Brentwood admitted supplying the ship with records. Pensioner Walter Ord, of York Road, Brightlingsea, was convicted of carrying a person from the ship and was fined £25 with £10 costs". It then went onto summarize the case made by the Director of Public Prosecutions' representative: "Mr. David Knight said the authorities watched a boat called the Aquamanda sail from the River Crouch, to the Mi Amigo and pick up four people. Police boarded the Aquamanda on its return and took
possession of tape-recordings found on Dawson and Mair. Both men admitted they had made broadcasts from the Mi Amigo. Mr. Knight said that on November 26 last year the authorities started to keep watch on a boat called the Coronia which left Brightlingsea. The boat was boarded on its return and Ord the owner was questioned. He told police he had taken a party out to see the radio ship and while there a man had shouted from the Mi Amigo that he had to get back to England because his mother was ill, Mr. Knight said Baker was also on board Ord's boat. Baker told police he had been out to the radio ship to deliver records for 'expenses only'. Mr. Michael Lowe, for Ord, said his client had been tricked, into bringing a man back from the radio ship with the 'sick mother' story. Ord was a man of impeccable character and had been in charge of subversive commando operations in Europe during the 1939-45 War". Other, papers that featured an account that day were the "Daily Telegraph", the "Times", the "Daily Mirror" & the northern edition of the "Guardian"; the London "Guardian" was unfortunately on strike at the time. "Record Mirror" had further comments to make: "In the court at Southend were about 50 Caroline supporters, who remained quiet for the duration of the proceedings, which lasted about an hour, An element of humour came into the hearing, when the magistrate asked the participants in the case if they would speak up, because, as he put it, 'there appears to be quite an interest in the case'. But for most of the time, there was a particularly nasty atmosphere in court, with Home Office officials swarming through the public gallery and on the floor of the court house. One man, strongly suspected of representing the Home Office, was found making sketches of several people in court. When questioned he said it was nobody's business what he was doing. He then asked his interviewer who he was. A complaint was registered with the clerk of the court, who promised he would look into the matter, adding that it is illegal to make drawings, take photos or make recordings, in court and that any person making drawings could be prosecuted. The current prosecutions will have no effect on Caroline, as the whole operation is now run via Spain".
The second episode of the court case began on October 9th. The next day the "Evening Echo" had this to say: "Ferrying disc-jockeys to and from Radio Caroline cost launch-owner Vincent Ferguson £100 in fines and costs. Southend magistrates heard his launch "Aquamanda" was intercepted in the River Crouch returning from a visit to the pirate radio station broadcasting-ship Mi Amigo. Ferguson, 37, of Eastwoodbury Close, Southend, admitted two offences of carrying passengers to the pop station. Ferguson's launch was seen to take stores and four passengers to Mi Amigo from the mouth of the River Crouch; police keeping watch from a trawler saw it berth alongside. The passengers went aboard and four others came back with Ferguson aboard his launch which was intercepted as it returned to the Crouch". The "Daily Telegraph" also reported the case that day. The "Southend standard", on Oct. 15th, added the comment from Mr. Ferguson "We will still take fishing parties and sightseers out to Radio Caroline but since this happened we have not been alongside". Johnny Jason, under his real name of Rudigar Johnathan von Etzdorf, also appeared in court.
His approach was different in every way, for he pleaded not guilty and, despite Home Office opposition, successfully had his case transferred to a Crown Court, where he may be tried by a jury. No date or venue has yet been announced. "Music Week", on October 4th, made some interesting observations. "The prosecution of two ex-Radio Caroline disc jockeys at Southend Magistrates Court last week is expected to have far-reaching effects on the music business. Music Week understands that as the disc jockeys have been prosecuted, there is every likelihood that further investigations will be started into the supplying of records to the station by record companies. Company managing directors have received in recent months letters from the Radio Regulatory Department of the Home Office and Phonographic Performances warning them about the supply of records, saying that it is against the law. However, Music Week understands that records are still being supplied to Caroline, despite warnings to company staffs, such as recent letters to EMI staff wanting of instant dismissal for anyone found supplying records. Promotion men argue that Caroline is still an important promotional outlet, especially for the more progressive album material that Caroline plays".
In Holland; too, the Authorities have been watching cut for boats attempting to tender the Mi Amigo. On October 7th the m.v. "Maria Lovika", once a German navy minesweeper and now a fishing-boat, was seized as she came into the harbour of Stellendam, which is on the island of Goeree-Overflakkee, about 20 miles south-west of Rotterdam. Her skipper Gijs Boon and his 69-year-old father, both from 's Gravenzands near Den Haag, were arrested but released after interrogation. The police found several programme tapes on the ship, and a faulty piece of equipment, which is believed to be either a diesel engine or a generator, belonging to the radioship. The public prosecutor from Amsterdam, J. Pieters LL.M., is quoted by the Dutch paper "De Telegraaf" on Oct. 8th as claiming: "We have drawn a bead on the m.v. "Maria Lovika" for a long time. In the tracing even aircraft were used. We only had to await the right moment to take action, and last night we had the luck that one of the diesel engines, one that was faulty, was on board. That is a piece of cast iron evidence".
CONGRATULATIONS TO STAN HAGG on the magnificent achievement of presenting over 2000 editions of "JUKEBOX"!: His first programme in the series was on June 3rd 1969 over the airwaves of Radio Veronica, where Stan for a time hosted the show twice a day. On September 4th this year the champagne was flowing in Mi Amigo's Studio four to celebrate "jukebox" No. 2000.
THE VER0NICA OMROEP ORGANISATIE has been given the following radio airtime, starting on December 28ths Mondays 23.00-24.00 GL'T on hilversum I; Fridays 19.00-20.00 on Hilv. III, which is to be a pop journal with LEX HARDING; and Sundays 09.00•10.00 on Hilv.IV with the familiar 'Men Vraagt En Wij Draaien" (People ask and we play the records) introduced, as on Veronica offshore, by FRANS NIENHUYS. We all wish everyone with Veronica the very best of luck and many more hours soon!
A WEDDING*** - There was once a nurse called MARGRET MASH who became a very happy girl; for on July 12th she was married to Canadian ex-Atlantis DJ ROB DAY. The ceremony took place in Bath, Somerset, and in November the couple are moving into a brand new house in Kent, where we're confident they'll spend many joyous years. Margret will continua nursing for a while, at Rochester Hospital. Lotsa love to you both from us all!
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***Copies of "Monitor" s 7 and 8 are still available at 20p each, but there are no longer any copies of any previous issues left.