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1981 Year Five

1981 Diary Page

The radio station this year was entered for the Thames valley road safety quiz, coming third in the competition. DJ's Roger Winterburn Penny Goldsmith, Dee and Mick Flarry represented Radio Heatherwood.

Radio Heatherwood was represented at the Ascot carnival and in spite of poor weather raised £44.

Dave Smith from Saturdays was looking after the librarian duties at the station. An article about his role was carried in the third edition of the radio magazine. Previously Val Mason was looking after the library but commitments elsewhere prevented her from carrying on.

A bed race was organized for the Ascot horticultural show this year.

Our price records, were the latest shop to help the radio this year by giving discount, against all the record purchases. Lucky dip by the Saturday crew, was in full swing with a box of chocolates; being given away every Saturday for a request pulled out of the hat. Keeble's the newsagents of South Ascot; were the sponsors.

 Thames Valley Police Hospital Radio Road Safety Quiz Year ?. 

These pictures were found in the archives and were taken either in 1981 or 1982 and feature other hospital radio's taking part.

The fete this year was opened by the actor John Junkin.

A presenter at Radio Heatherwood Neil Crocker swam the nurses Swimming Pool, a total of five miles to raise funds for the Radio Station.

The average age of patients in the hospital, ranges from 35 to 65. A filler record in the period 76 until 1984 would quite often be a record from the charts, which sat on the console area. It was always too easy to use them, because of being close at hand. The age group of the presenters also influenced the type of filler.

At the end of July this year the station paid £279.02 for two turntables from Panasonic, these SL1200's were the best decision ever made with regard to equipment buying ( 2016 35 years on, they are sold off as part of the studio dismantle ).

At a meeting of the league the hospital finally advised that once the switchboard moves, there could be an opportunity for more space for the radio station.

In October the two way hospital link with radio 210 was reduced to a half an hour on a Sunday afternoon.

In November the WD2 children's show, was first broadcast. The presenter would go down to the children's ward and interview the children staff and parents then broadcast Sometimes with hilarious results. The first presenter was Nick Westlake but he departed from the station and PJ took over in 1982. It ran until December 1984.

A new cassette player was purchased this year at a cost of £135.29.

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Patient Booklet Gallery Issue 3

Patient Booklets

The radio magazines were given freely to patients to promote the work of the radio station and the leagues trolley shop.

In early 1981 the third edition of the radio magazine was released.

Issue 3 contained twenty eight pages with information about the hospital and how the radio service was set-up.

It contained stories from Tim Kingcott Thursday, Dave Smith Saturday and PJ and a postoperative parody from Grace Browning Wednesdays.

The booklet also carried pictures and an article about the trolley shop.

Chairman Ron Mason welcomed readers to this new edition.

1981 Year Five Story Unfolds

For further information about this year:- Follow the links

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Press Report CHRISTMAS SPECIAL A behind the scenes look at very special radio station

Radio Heatherwood service to the sick when Radio Heatherwood crackled into life at Ascot's Heatherwood Hospital in June 1976, few people could have expected it to become such an important, everyday component of life on the wards.

It began with a handful of records an even smaller number of volunteers, and a huge chunk of hope.But as the record collection multiplied, and with it the volunteers, Radio Heatherwood's portion of hope has become redundant.

Now as the service prepares for its fifth Christmas there can be little doubt. Heatherwood Radio is here to stay.

It began as the brainchild of Mr Ron Mason - once a patient at Heatherwood and now chairman of the League of Friends who is still responsible for the radio station.

Editor:- This statement is not true it was Bill Berry who founded the radio.

But although it has come a long way from those early days in the mid-seventies, Ron's philosophies on running the station are still very much as they were. As at the beginning, Radio Heatherwood is all about getting to know the patients.

Radio Heatherwood is now staffed by around 40 volunteers who are still based in a tiny cubby hole in the hospital's maternity block. And it is not just a case of DJ's locking themselves away and playing obscure records all night long for their own self indulgence. "Everyone has to go round the wards before his show," said Mr Mason.

Soft hearted

"They have to meet the people they are playing records for. I can tell straight away if someone is on the air but has not been round the wards. Going round the wards makes or breaks the people who come here," he said. Working for Radio Heatherwood is not a job for the soft hearted.

Nor is it a job for the volunteer with delusions of becoming a famous national radio disc-jockey. Said Mr Mason: "We mould our DJs into our way of doing things."

The station is manned by four DJs a night with one of them crew leader. They take it in turns to go on the air between 7pm and 10 each and every night for a mixture of requested music, old time music hall and stories.

The studio is barely big enough for two people at a time. "We have outgrown ourselves and would like to move to a new studio," said Ron."The hospital has promised us extra facilities but we have got to raise the money for that first."

A behind-the-scenes look at a very special radio station Radio Heatherwood costs around £600 a year to run, but proudly boasts it is self sufficient.It was born five years ago out of surplus funds the Friends of Heatherwood had and has not cost them a penny since its initial funding.

They install all their own equipment and service it although they are reliant on local traders for giving them some of their basics.

Each four man crew is responsible for what goes out each night. And this Christmas each crew has taken the opportunity to line up something just a little different."I came in here the other night when the Wednesday crew were rigging something up for Christmas Eve with a famous personality," said Ron."I haven't got a clue what they are doing and they won't tell me."

Likewise each night in Heatherwood there is a different competition with prizes donated from local traders. Monday is plant of the week,Tuesday is cacti night, and Friday cake of the week. But the most popular is Thursday night bingo.

All the DJs not on the air scatter themselves round the wards while the numbers are called out on the radio. "You can hear a pin drop on the wards while people are listening to the numbers,'said Ron. "As soon as there's a winner the DJ on the ward dashes to a phone and rings the studio. "Once the phone rings the DJ on the air knows somewhere there is a winner and stops calling."

After the DJs have all assembled back at the studio Ron or the crew leader goes off to meet the lucky winner and hand over the prize.

Away from bingo the DJs spend much of their time when they are not on the air meeting the patients and collecting their requests. "When they go on air and know who the request is for it adds something to the service," said Ron.

This Christmas one of the service's keenest and most dedicated helpers Mrs Audrey Woof will be playing Father Christmas to all the children at Heatherwood on Christmas Eve. It will be just one of Radio Heatherwood's attempts to take the children's minds off the hospital for a split second at this very special time of year.

Bracknell Times Thursday, December 24, 1981

Volunteer Stars Gallery

Some captured moments of our volunteers,during this year.

 Our Stars of 1981

  • Audrey Woof
    Voluntary Service:- 1979 to 1984
    5 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Audrey Woof Thursdays.Request Collector.
    Teresa Lucas Patient
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  • Alan Willis
    Voluntary Service:- 1976 to 1981
    4.6 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Alan Willis Tuesdays.
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  • Neil Crocker
    Voluntary Service:- 1981 to 1981
    1 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Neil Crocker.
    Neil Made the papers this year after completing a Marathon Swim in the nurses pool.

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  • ©RadioHeritage
    Ron mason & patient Nigel Eden.
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  • Andy Morton
    Voluntary Service:- 1978 to 1985
    7.8 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Andy Morton Mondays.
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  • Mark ? Tuesdays.
    Voluntary Service:- ? to ? Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Mark ? Tuesdays.
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  • ©RadioHeritage
    Chas & Dee Fridays.
    Click to Enlarge:-
  • Tim Kingcott
    Voluntary Service:- 1981 to 1983
    2 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Tim Kingcott Fridays.
    Click to Enlarge:-
  • Mike Flarry
    Voluntary Service:- 1980 to 1981
    1 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Mike Flarry Tuesdays.
    Click to Enlarge:-
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  • ©RadioHeritage
    Don Drury Easter Presentation.
    Ward 2 Children's ward are the lucky recipients of an Easter egg from martins the newsagents of which Don was the manager.

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  • Alan Willis
    Voluntary Service:- 1976 to 1981
    4.6 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Alan Willis Tuesdays.
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  • Sue ?
    Voluntary Service:- ? to? ? Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Sue Tuesdays.
    Voluntary service unknown.

    Click to Enlarge:-
  • Penny Goldsmith
    Voluntary Service:- 1979 to 1987
    8 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Penny Goldsmith Mondays.
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  • John Walters
    Voluntary Service:- 1976 to 1984
    8 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    John Walters Mondays.
    Former Treasurer to the Radio.

    Click to Enlarge:-
  • Don Drury
    Voluntary Service:- 1981 to 1981
    1 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Don Drury Thursdays.
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  • Grace Browning
    Voluntary Service:- 1978 to 1987
    9.8 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Grace Browning Wednesdays.
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  • ©RadioHeritage
    Bill & Grace Wednesdays.
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  • Steve Brown
    Voluntary Service:- 1978 to 1982
    4 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Steve Brown Thursdays.
    Click to Enlarge:-
  • Deena Monroe
    Voluntary Service:- 1979 to 1982
    3 Years
    ©RadioHeritage
    Deena Monroe Fridays.
    Click to Enlarge:-
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Archive Gems

Just some extra's we found:-

Staff Joining This Year 6 Staff Leaving 8

That was the year that was “1981”

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