Local radio experiments

Sep 12, 2014, 04:38 PM

Local radio is a pretty obvious idea. It wasn't always so. The point of it, and its sustainability, had to be proven. Local commercial radio could well have preceded BBC Local Radio, were it not for the efforts of the BBC's former War Correspondent, Frank Gillard. Despite VHF being available for local radio, and recommended for its use by the 1951 Beveridge Report, progress was slow.

Evidence was provided by a series of closed circuit 'radio stations', between 1961 and 1962. These comprised recorded programmes, and not actually transmitted, but their contents could afford the Pilkington Committee some idea of the content the public might expect from a BBC Local Radio network.

The stations were mounted in: Bristol; Norwich; Portsmouth; Hull; Dundee; Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch; Swansea; Wrexham; Portsmouth; Durham; Dumfries, the Isle of Wight; the Vale of Evesham; and Lyn Ac Afrom. These excerpts are culled from the Durham and Hull tapes.