During 1987, a lot of people at PCRL weren’t happy with the way the station was run and thought they could do better. Therefore Mikey B and many others left to start their own station. So at 5 PM on Friday the 16th of October 1987, Enterprise Radio started on 90.9 FM.
The station was more professional than PCRL, being the first Midlands pirate to broadcast in real Stereo. They also had their own custom made Bill Mitchell jingles and adverts voiced by the star of the London pirates Mark Damon.
For a brief while, there was some animosity between the two stations which sometimes spilled over onto the airwaves. When Enterprise was the first to broadcast in stereo, PCRL followed soon after. In many ways PCRL had to smarten up their act and the two stations ended up complimenting each other rather that competing.
Enterprise tended to have a more populist, youth-orientated programme style, compared with the more “laid-back”, community -based style of PCRL. Enterprise had a wide range of programmes, including: “School’s out” on Saturday mornings (which was for kids and hosted by kids as DJs), a gospel music show and community phone ins.
On the 8th of March ’88 Enterprise moved to the clearer channel of 91.9 and had some more Bill Mitchell jingles. However the old frequency wasn’t empty for long because at 6 PM on the 6th of May they launched a sister station called Solar-Rock FM to play mellower, more specialist music such as soul, lovers-rock and jazz.
Solar-Rock was supposed to be on across the weekend from 6 PM Friday to 6 AM Monday, but after its first weekend on air it wasn’t heard with proper programmes again apart from the odd couple of hours due to technical problems.
Like most of the larger pirates, Enterprise and Solar-Rock used a remote link to their main transmitter. Part of their technical problems was thought to be interference to the links, which occasionally took not only Solar Rock but also Enterprise FM off the air. It is also believed that Enterprise suffered a studio raid in June ’88, so the Solar-Rock equipment was used to get Enterprise back on air and so Solar-Rock was never heard again.
Enterprise continued for the rest of ’88 before closing down on 31st December. PCRL then closed a couple of weeks later as both stations were to apply for the new Birmingham incremental license being advertised by the old IBA. Both stations were unsuccessful as the license went to Buzz FM. Ironically, Mikey B went on to work for Buzz FM, before being sacked from the station. Following a court case for racial discrimination, Buzz FM was sold to Mikey B for a brief period in 1994 – before being sold on again.
Many of Enterprise’s DJs were later heard on Power 92 which operated on 92 FM between February and June 1989, and some even ended up on Radio WM!
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