Freedom Radio – Dudley

The first 7-day a week white pirate station in the Black Country was Power House Radio. They had been on since 7th February 1988 from Rowley Regis. At this point Craig Benson was running a car hire business that booked some advertising on PHR. It was through this connection that Craig Benson obtained his first…

Radio Free Birmingham / County Radio

In August 1979 two pirate stations started broadcasting. One was the short-lived Radio Active, while the other was someone relaying tapes of London’s Radio Jackie on 227 MW. A meeting was arranged, and in staggered the radio legend that is Steve Merrick, “wanting to sound like Radio Jackie”. That was met with some amusement by…

Radio Sovereign – London

In late 1988, a number of commercial stations in the UK started to run separate services on AM and FM. Most started new oldies stations on AM, but once again it was a pirate who had done it first. In this case over 5 years earlier! Radio Sovereign was the UK’s first ‘Golden Oldies’ station…

Radio Nova – Leicester

Radio Nova broadcast to Leicestershire in the early 1980s, borrowing their name and a few jingles from the famous Dublin station. They were based originally in Groby, Leicestershire and broadcast on FM. At the same time, Radio Veronica and Radio King were using on AM, with Veronica being based in Desford and King in Leicester…

Passion FM – Bristol

Passion FM first appeared on 106.2FM across Bristol at the end of 1994. At first it catered greatly for Jungle, as well as Reggae and Soul. Over the first Christmas period, it featured an overnight marathon show from Easygroove who hadn’t been on radio since BAD Radio closed in 1989. This was a journey through…

Groove FM – Dudley

Groove FM was the second pirate radio station to be brought on air by Scott Davis, the founder of Exile FM. From the very start Groove had many of the old Exile presenters on board, which were joined by some of the key members of Unique FM, as well as few totally new to the…

PCRL – Birmingham

In the early 80s Cecil Morris was running Rising Star Records and Management from a shop at 151 Dudley Road Birmingham. He also branched out in to running a venue (The Elite) and a magazine (Rasta Mag), so it was obvious that Radio would be next. His first shows were on Sounds Alternative during 1981,…

EST / Empire Radio

In the late 70s and early 80s there were many short wave pirates broadcasting from the UK, and one of the most popular was Empire Radio. They first took to the air on 28th May 1978, broadcasting on 6200 kHz Short Wave, with the slogan “Serving a Free United Europe”. This was later changed to…

Sounds Alternative

Keith Rogers first moved into the pirate radio world with shortwave station Empire Radio in 1978, using the name Mike Thomas. He was also sometimes known as Paul Kent on Radio 242 and Radio Free Birmingham. However, in 1980 he decided to start his own station, so in December of that year Sounds Alternative was…

Sunshine Radio – Ludlow

Sunshine Radio in Ludlow dates back to the late 70s when they used to broadcast every Bank Holiday weekend on 239m (1242 kHz), and by 1981, 249m (1179 kHz). Around this time, negotiations took place with the IBA with a view to bring local radio to the area, bearing in mind at this point there…