Radio Radio - or - Jim's Anorak Journey..  page 1 of 7  

spot the anorak...

I'm not sure how my interest in radio started. I remember my great grandmother listening to the racing results on an old valve radio (a GEC 4650 - still working !) & in my dad's shed there was a large wireless up on the shelf. I can recall hearing two loud stations right next to each other on my titchy red 'Transwave Six Transistor' radio, so I guess this was Radios Caroline & London, but I was just too young to register what this was all about.


At junior boarding school in the 1960's, older pupils set up the aptly named 'Radio Prison', & I followed with 'Radio 290' & 'Mike Tape Two'. I won't make this out to be more than it was - simply a couple of speakers in the hobbies room & common room fed by a collection of old bits of equipment - 2 x tape decks, 1 x record deck, 1 x microphone & a valve amplifier, but, it was another start to my radio hobby. Interestingly, I do remember having only one listener when I closed down 'Mike Tape Two', & that was because he had been 'grounded' & wasn't allowed out ! Perhaps this was a sign of things to come nearly 40 years later !


Throughout 1971 & 1972 I listened to RNI constantly, even the daytime dutch programmes, & often to their broadcasts on the 49m & 31m bands, especially the sunday world service broadcasts. In particular I enjoyed 'RNI goes DX' with AJ Beirens, which introduced me to the world of short wave listening & the history of the 60's offshore stations. I also collected as many pirate radio magazines as I could, - Monitor, DeeJay & Radio Monthly, Script, SIRA, Caroline Newsletter..., & scrap books of cuttings from Disc & Music Echo & Record Mirror.