A charity is bidding to launch a new radio service to serve the city of Winchester, to keep older people engaged with their local community, promote healthier lifestyles, and reduce loneliness and social isolation.
Winchester Radio promises to deliver local radio for Winchester, from Winchester and by Winchester. Unlike other radio stations in the past that have broadcast from the city and had to close, merge, or move, Winchester Radio, as a charity, will not be affected by commercial interests, buy-outs or take-overs. Its overall aim will be to promote the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle, and the importance of maintaining good personal mental and physical health, whilst keeping its listeners in touch with what’s happening locally, encouraging them to participate in Winchester activities, and helping them to age happy and well.
The station will focus on providing a service to people aged 50+. Music played will reflect this audience. Alongside the music, Winchester Radio will have a mix of features that are educational, heart-warming, entertaining and thought-provoking.
Winchester Radio will be applying to Ofcom for an FM community radio licence when the next round of applications open for South East England later this year. The team behind the charity is led by trustees Paul Blitz, Nigel Dallard, Ian Kemp and Anna O’Brien. Between them they have over 80 years of experience of managing the local hospital radio charity. Winchester Radio will also assume responsibility for the hospital radio service at the RHCH in a few months’ time, and the existing hospital radio volunteers will transfer to the new charity.
Winchester Radio’s Chairman, Anna O’Brien said: “For over 30 years, the local hospital radio has delivered an entirely voluntary service entertaining patients at the RHCH. The aim has always been to provide a warm, friendly, and very local broadcasting service – meeting our listeners, keeping them informed of hospital activities and upcoming community events happening on our doorstep. We have a long tradition of bringing the outside world in to the hospital community through our coverage of local events, be that Armed Forces Week, the summer’s Hat Fair or a locally church-produced pantomime at Christmas-time. Winchester Radio will build on the heritage of the hospital radio, and provide a service that emphasises the strong caring sense of community, togetherness and belonging, in this great city we all call home.”
As well as entertaining those unfortunate enough to find themselves in hospital, Winchester Radio will look to the future where ever more emphasis is placed on looking after people in the community, ideally whilst living at home, and encouraging them to live a healthy, active lifestyle, engaged with their local community.
Anyone interested in supporting Winchester Radio’s bid to Ofcom to provide a radio service to the city of Winchester, can find out more and pledge their support at: http://winchesterradio.uk.