New plans on the horizon for Black Cat Radio

Ste Greenall says Black Cat is at the heart of St Neots.

Ste Greenall says Black Cat is at the heart of St Neots. - Credit: STE GREENALL

There are now more than 300 community radio stations in the UK and as the management teams of any will tell you, it is a painstaking task to even apply for a broadcast licence, let alone be granted one.

So, it was fantastic to learn that having first been granted a licence in 2017, Black Cat Radio has successfully applied for an extension to our initial licence, and we will be on air until at least April 2027!

The station has certainly come a long way since our launch in April, 2017. We were also given approval by OFCOM to relocate our transmitter to a new site, which meant we had to change our frequency to 102.5FM.

We switched on our new transmitter on December 12, 2020 which means we now reach all the parts of our community with a clear signal indoors and outdoors.

We feel very much that we are at the centre of St. Neots life and many groups and organisations have benefitted by working with us on various appeals, fund-raising and help in many ways.

We were really thrilled and humbled by the messages of support we received, which we sent to OFCOM with our application. 

The station continues to champion mental health issues, talking to people who have experienced mental health issues of their own, and those who have faced the consequences through the suicide of loved ones.

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We don’t shy away from the tough subjects. At the height of the first wave of the pandemic, we launched a successful community campaign to provide digital radios for those without one and cooling fans for the wards at Hinchingbrooke.

Whilst working in support during the first lockdown, like many media outlets, many of our broadcasts were created in the volunteers’ own homes. This made us realise that the space we have been renting in St. Neots is really too large for our need.

So, in the next couple of months, we will be relocating to more suitable premises for the next stage of our development. Moving the location of a radio station can be a tough task – we know! It won’t be easy, but we feel sure that there are people and companies out there who will be willing to help. 

Anyone who wants to get involved should email: studio@blackcat.org. 

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