Park Radio looks at expansion with green light for additional Eye studio
Plans are under way to create a walk-in satellite studio in Eye as part of an expansion project by a south Norfolk community radio station.
Eye Town Council has given a grant to Diss-based Park Radio, which will go towards broadcasting equipment for a more accessible studio in Eye.
A location for the new studio is yet to be decided, but local councillors have promised it will give people in the area the opportunity “to have a voice”.
The £500 grant was approved late last month, following an application by Park Radio in March. The station is also in talks with council officials in Harleston to open a third studio, with a decision expected within the coming days.
While most of the station’s broadcasters and producers will remain in its main studio at Diss Youth and Community Centre, in Shelfanger Road, it will allow residents, local authorities and communities leaders in Eye to broadcast on its airwaves from their own area.
“It seems like the right thing to do, as we are trying to allow greater access for the whole of our audience,” said Chris Moyse, station manager at Park Radio.
“We want to provide for the people of Eye and Harleston, and allow them to walk down the high street and talk to us live.
“It means someone will be able to pop in and talk directly to us, and all they have got to do is use their own facilities.
“It’s an ambition of ours that we have a greater presence in Harleston and Eye, and it might encourage more people in both of those towns to get involved and bring them closer to what we are trying to achieve.”
While being based in Diss, the station also broadcasts to Harleston, Eye and the surrounding villages, often discussing issues that affect people throughout in the Waveney Valley.
Eye town councillor Andrew Evitt, who appears on the station once a month to talk about the history of Eye, said that the new approach would give some much-needed representation for the town, which he claimed is often overlooked by more mainstream regional broadcasters.
“We have been working with Park Radio over the years – they have helped us with various events we have had in the past and they’re very much a local radio station,” said Mr Evitt, who lives in Castle Street, in Eye.
“There’s a feeling that the north of Suffolk and south of Norfolk get a bit of a raw deal; most local radio stations focus on places like Norwich and Ipswich, and we feel a bit forgotten about, so it’s great that we have a local radio station for our own area.
“Having a studio in Eye will add that extra dimension. It will get people more interested in their area, and could even help on the tourist side, and people could become more interested in visiting Eye.
“But, most importantly, it gives the opportunity for people in the area to have a voice – if there’s a local concern, they will be able to talk about it on the radio,” added Mr Evitt.