Big switch-over for Black Cat Radio means more reach in area
- Credit: Archant
Black Cat Radio, which launched on the internet only in 2012, but gained a full FM licence in April 2017, is changing its FM frequency and switching to a new transmitter.
At the same time, OFCOM has granted the station a power increase, giving them a much stronger and more solid signal within St Neots and the surrounding villages. Founder director Tony Gillham explained: “We have had a very successful year, gaining listeners month after month and we cannot thank our advertisers enough for what they do to fund the station. But we were aware of “pockets” in the town where the signal wasn’t as clear as we wanted. OFCOM told us that in order to boost the signal, we would have to change our FM frequency to 102.5 FM. Listeners who use our free app or listen through a smart speaker or their computers are not affected.” The big switch over will be on Saturday, December 12.
The station is manned entirely by volunteers, many of whom pay a monthly contribution to the station’s upkeep. Using a system which St Neots St Mary’s Rotary Club paid to install, many of the team have been able to create their programmes from home.
“It’s been a challenge” said Phil Lack “but everyone has knuckled down and produced some exciting radio. We have truly become part of the community, embracing as many aspects of St. Neots life that we can. As radio listening has changed in recent years, we feel that like many other community radio stations around the UK, we have filled the gap vacated by many of the more professional stations. Our listeners will vouch for the fact we are truly local.”
Presenters have been interviewing over the phone throughout the year, with guests ranging from those working on events in their village right through to international stars. Singer Suzi Quatro appeared on Black Cat Radio last Monday. Lack added: “we try to cover as many music genres as we can and we engage with our listeners using social media. There’s nothing nicer that to receive thanks for what we do and as every year passes, we aim to get better and better. We already broadcast over 130 hours a week and we are setting ourselves the target of 24/7 radio produced in St. Neots for St Neots”