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Station plans to have more people going radio ga ga

As Park Radio goes into its third year of full-time broadcasting, the station’s director has thanked listeners and pledged to invest in equipment to reach an even larger audience.

Chris Moyse said the station, which covers Diss, Harleston, Eye and surrounding villages in the Waveney Valley, is spending £3,000 to extend its transmission area into, among others, Long Stratton and Mendelsham in April.

He said: “After the approval to do that from Ofcom in September, they have allowed us to go from 100 watts to 300 watts.

Park Radio’s David Hoffman, Parky Bear and Chris Moyse.Picture: Mark Bullimore
Park Radio’s David Hoffman, Parky Bear and Chris Moyse.Picture: Mark Bullimore

“So, to give you an example, we now have to improve our equipment from an Austin Allegro to a Ford Granada.”

The popular station, which is operated by 40 volunteers, averages between 8,000 and 9,000 listeners in the daytime and Mr Moyse, who started at Broadland Radio in 1984, said the support they have received from the local community has been nothing short of fantastic.

He said: “When you have a population in our catchment area of around 80,000, and we go out to 10 per cent of that, it is quite phenomenal.

“When we ask people who have converted over to us why they did it, they say they enjoy the local news that they cannot get from anywhere else and the variety of music we play; songs that some of the commercial stations just do not put on.”

Though the radio station, which could hardly be heard beyond the town when it started broadcasting test transmissions from a shoe shop basement in Diss around 10 years ago, will not have its official on-air full-time birthday until November, Mr Moyse hopes the expansion will be something else to celebrate this year.

He said: “We want to continue to grow the project, keep people informed of community news and carry on with the quality we are already providing for our listeners.

“We are delighted our audience is pleased with what we put out. We are now giving them 116 hours of local programming; even the BBC is not doing that.

“So it is just fantastic that we can do that for them and carry on doing that into the future,” added Mr Moyse.

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