Radio Trent 1980 show - Len Groat

Episode 884,   Jun 13, 2014, 09:02 PM

A time and a place. As the early commercial stations found their feet in the '80s, their community obligations, prodded by a strict regulator and a BBC local radio management legacy, were sensibly combined, in safe hands, with tight, formated music radio to produce this sort of cheery output on the best stations.

Enjoy this couple of hours of Nottingham's Radio Trent from December 18th 1980. Afternoon presenter, Len Groat, plays a mix of old and new; the oldies dating back as far as the early '60s. Put in context, that was not as far back as the 80s music you hear on today's AC stations. Hear too, a dedication to a former Metro listener from Newcastle: in the days when there were only 19 stations, listeners did indeed hear keep in touch with their old favourite peripatetic presenters as they moved around the new network, or enjoy their familiar voices whilst travelling through the area.

Specifically, savour the early Alfasound jingles. Used here were huge numbers of cuts from the very first set recorded in Manchester for Trent (combined with a few 'off the shelf' Christmas additions), hailing from the early days of that beautiful sweet English sound. Len loved his jingles: enjoy five at the start of the show, each played from a separate tape cartridge.

The huge volume of community information, softened by a range of backing music, includes full postal addresses and phone numbers. Note too the out-of Nottingham mentions from Derbyshire & Leicestershire: back then, with so few stations around, stations claimed an Empire as far as they could be heard, becoming almost regional stations, an eerie precursor for what has followed. Hear too, a formal dedication to a 'Mrs E'; an edition of the radio swapshop 'Tradio', complete again with full postal addresses and even an invitation to 'pop round'; the end of a community appeal for the blind; and a promo from Graham Neale, the rock show presenter who was arrested five years later for the murder of his girlfriend Lynn, and subsequently committed suicide.

From the closing announcements, it appears I hosted this very show as relief jock the following week; of which I have no recollection!