Radio Radio - or - Jim's Anorak Journey..  page 3 of 7


In 1975 I was still at school in Ipswich, & interested in the new ILR station Radio Orwell, opening on 28th October 1975 - the date of my 18th birthday ! A few discussions with receptionist Katie Glass & I handed over a letter with my personal top 5 records listed, & these were played by Andy Archer on the opening day school's programme ! My number one was the Doobie Brothers - 'Another Park, Another Sunday' - obviously a Caroline influenced track. That same evening a friend & I were given a guided tour of the Radio Orwell studios, once again meeting Dave (Keith) Rogers, & ended up having a drink with Andy in the Crown & Anchor pub ! The following day we guested on the school's programme, & were given free tickets to the upcoming Barclay James Harvest concert at the Ipswich Gaumont !


Click on the jukebox to hear an edited recording of the top five programme (this clip is 8 minutes long).

Again more by coincidence, I was listening to Radio Caroline in March 1980 on the night the Mi Amigo sank, so heard the end of 'Europe's Voice of Loving Awareness'. Whilst sad, this event had far less impact than it may have done years before. I was now about to embark on married & family life, so my priorities quite rightly changed ! I still received the excellent Monitor magazine so read the trials & tribulations of Radio Caroline's attempts to return, but never believed it would happen. The pictures in the East Anglian Daily Times in 1983 thankfully proved me wrong !


When Laser sailed in & 'parked' in the River Stour, Ann & I with the kids made the trip to Harwich & then to Parkeston to get closer to the 'Communicator' vessel. Undeterred by 'No Entry' signs, we ended up the wrong side of customs at Parkeston Quay with a group of people leaving a North Sea ferry ! Thankfully one of the Parkeston staff seemed to understand my anorak nature & persuaded the customs officials that we were only there to try & see a rusty old boat. Another fine mess I got us into for the sake of my hobby !

We listened to Caroline's 25th birthday celebrations on short wave whilst on holiday in North Wales at Easter 1989, so it was quite a shock to listen to the raid developing in August 1989 as we were driving back to North Wales for our summer holiday along the M1 / M6. The transmissions cut just before we were out of earshot. We were suitably annoyed enough to go to the Caroline Movement rally a few weeks later in London - the only protest rally the family has attended !