Broadcaster Bob Blues launches Sid Valley Radio
- Credit: Archant
Sid Valley Radio will be a station made by the community, for the community.
That is the ambition of broadcaster Bob Weeks, who has launched the station online and eventually hopes to obtain a sought-after FM licence.
Anyone and everyone will be able to participate, share their stories or their musical taste, and gain valuable experience in the industry.
“I want people from all walks of life to be involved,” said Bob, who broadcasts as ‘Bob Blues’ and boasts 20,000 listeners around the world on other stations.
“No matter where you come from, you could be in a wheelchair or living off a food bank, I want you to help.
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“When it’s stormy out, I want people to turn on Sid Valley Radio. You can sit watching TV but radio is different, it sparks off your imagination.
“What have young people got outside of farming or the service industry? Why can’t we introduce media? They can develop their own character in front of the mic and could get on the BBC if they wanted to.”
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Bob has planned a three-phase approach, via internet radio and a DAB station, that he hopes will eventually prove to Government regulator Ofcom that Sid Valley Radio is worthy of an FM licence.
They are in short supply as there are few free frequencies available but sidvalleyradio.co.uk is already up and running online.
Ofcom also offers restricted licences that allow a station to broadcast on FM for a month a year, which Bob would probably use over FolkWeek and around Christmas.
While most of the output currently is automated playlists, Bob hopes people will share their passion – be it telling tales, brass bands or grime music – to fill the schedule.
The 59-year-old, originally from the Isle of Wight but now living in Peaslands Road with partner Christine, added: “I was a freelance photographer. Everyone has a story, even someone who just sits in the corner and doesn’t talk. When they start to talk it’s like a flower opening.
“If someone has passion and can talk the hind legs off a donkey, they’re welcome. It’s all about telling your stories.”
As well as presenting, volunteers will also be able to gain experience in roles such as engineering and creating videos to view online. Anyone interested should email Bob at email@example.com