2019,  Past Gold Entries,  Sharing Best Practice

2019 Gold Entries

Here are the Gold entries from the 2019 Community Radio Awards

Community Development Project of the Year – Chapel St Primary School takes over – ALL FM


Station of the Year


Digital or RSL Station Of The Year

Sponsored by CMS4MEDIA

Radio Wanno

Community Show of the Year
Julie Donaldson’s Morning Mix – Zetland FM

I am the sole presenter and producer of the ‘Morning Mix’ show between 8-11am Monday to Friday at Zetland FM and have developed the ‘mix’ format from the breakfast and mid-morning shows since June 2017. The show offers a variety of content to inform and entertain and get the listener’s day off to a positive start, with a local focus across the three hours. So much so that my show was shortlisted in the “Best Local Radio Show” in the 2018 ARIAs.

It moves from a focus on news, weather, newspapers, travel, sport, business and the daily “Something to Think About” feature in the first hour, through to the community driven interviews with the inspiring people and organisations that make up our broadcast area in the third hour. Then slotting in between, I offer the “Golden Year”. Although even that offers a twist to get more audience interaction, as they share their personal, family and local “headlines” from that given year.

The remit that I set for the show from day one was to shine a light on the positive people and stories of our area – particularly because we lost our steel industry and a huge amount of jobs within weeks of the launch of our station. I’ve always wanted the show to contribute to and support the ongoing ‘rise from the ashes’, which is why I actively support both on-air and off-air, the annual ‘Inspiring Women Awards’, the ‘Redcar and Cleveland Ambassadors Programme’ and ‘The High Tide Foundation’.

I underpin the show with an active social media presence, where I promote the people, their organisations, their activities and upload links to their interviews. I also do Facebook Live videos, which I have used to great effect when offering both a visual and audio guide to breast cancer self-examination. Moreover, I write supporting guest pages for the quarterly Zetland FM magazine, which is distributed around libraries, waiting rooms and businesses across our transmission area.

In less than four years, I’ve interviewed well in excess of 2,000 people covering all aspects of life; health, finances, music, sport, business and pretty much everything else in between. I am constantly searching for new people and new subjects to highlight, but I’m now in the privileged position of having groups and individuals approach me to come on the show, realising what a helpful local resource we are in the community.

The submitted audio is a sample to demonstrate the wide breadth of subjects covered on the show. Included here is;
Tracey Lean, Cancer Prevention and Early Diagnosis Improvement Officer with her ‘booby cushion’. This was a multi-platform feature offering a guide to breast self-examination using Facebook Live to supplement the radio interview.
Rayvan Sky Masters, a 10-year-old singer.
Steve with the “Pink Ladies”, a group of local people who are all cancer survivors or are battling cancer and have raised a phenomenal amount of money for cancer research.
Award-winning charity “We Are Rubies”, which was formed after a national report suggested that Middlesbrough was the worst place for a girl to grow up. They now work with young girls across Redcar and Cleveland and Middlesbrough to help boost confidence through workshops in schools.

Julie Donaldson’s Morning Mix – Zetland FM Written Entry

Female Presenter of the Year
Jo Thoenes – BFBS Brize Norton

Jo Thoenes joined BFBS (the British Forces Broadcasting Service) in 2014 to present the 1300-1600 slot, Monday to Friday at BFBS Brize Norton.

Jo’s affinity with the forces audience has grown to that of a casual observer to being second to none as her career with us, and her contact with our military audience has grown. Her enthusiasm for all things aeronautical is phenomenal and she can spot a Voyager 400 at several miles away! It’s not all RAF though, as her TSA covers Dalton Barracks in Abingdon where she covers everything for the Army side of life too.

In addition to her weekday afternoon show for the Brize Norton TSA, Jo presents a weekly show with BFBS content for BBC Radio Oxfordshire. She is an expert relationship-builder and has become totally embedded within the forces community in Brize and, in March/April, completed several weeks detachment to BFBS in Brunei. Whilst there, Jo travelled up country into the Brunei jungle with the Gurkhas and did several reports for the BFBS network from there.

Jo, with her fellow presenter Alex Gill, are known everywhere in Brize Norton and are popular additions to every social event the station and units hold. Whether presenting (or being nominated for) the Brize community ‘Bravo’ awards or hosting the station fireworks night, they’re very much in demand, and are very much at the heart of this community.

RAF Benson has also made good use of Jo’s broadcast and compering talents and she rarely says no to any request for help that enhances this community of interest.

A can-do team player who can also lead, Jo is a rare breed of broadcaster whose professionalism and (very) military sense of humour brings her the interaction, affection and success she enjoys every day at the centre of this pivotal military base.

BFBS serves military personnel and their families worldwide, target age 16-55.

Our national radio platform in the UK links military audiences to stations in 20+ locations. BFBS is heard on UK digital TV outlets and globally online.

Jo Thoenes – BFBS Brize Norton Written Entry

Male Presenter of the Year
Sam Day – Future Radio

Hi, I’m Sam, and I do breakfast show at Future Radio!

Future provides a flavour of Norwich city along with alternative tunes, and it’s my job to get everyone listening and ready for the new day, so I keep it lively. For me, local radio is really personal so I share my life with the listener talk to retain that personal touch 3’44”). I believe you’ve got to be like a best mate, as people listen to the radio get that company and friendly voice in their lives.

Future Radio listeners are really into their music, so I keep track with any new stuff that’s about, and make sure that I know my stuff to sell the new music key to the station’s identity. I form a strong, emotional opinion on it beforehand so that there is grounding behind what the listener is hearing and loving. (A favourite track of mine is ‘That Sound’ by Sam Fender 1’02”) I also don’t taking myself too seriously, so if there’s anything peculiar, or funny, then I’ll pounce on the opportunity to make some creative radio and make the listener laugh. (1’46” and 2’40”) I’ve got to make the show light and silly – there’s already an option to listen to a news show locally with BBC Radio Norfolk, and there are other options in the morning for a show that’s entirely about new music, so I need to think what’s special about my presenting style that people would choose Future Radio.

With more and more local radio being taken off-air it’s vital to keep that community flavour and relevance, that’s why keeping in tabs with what’s going on in Norwich with interviews and features is so vital. I love speaking to people about Norwich events and competitions, but also it’s important for these guests to talk about Norwich itself, so people can wake up to voices talking about their city (for example, talking about the unsung beauty of the Riverside area 2’20”). I also like to keep on the pulse with what’s going on in the general news, so it doesn’t feel like a closed bubble! Often, when featuring something national (like the Batman story at 2’55”) I add a fun local edge – where else would someone suggest Delia Smith takes on the role of Batman!

Recently, we moved to new city centre studios, and relaunched the breakfast show with all new imaging, promotion, two new presenters (I’m still there though!) and a new time slot. The aim’s to raise our profile in Norwich, and to be more an active part of the city. It was my job to head the first Breakfast show and really kickstart this fresh new identity for the station. We had a variety of guests on, including the Lord Mayor of Norwich. It’s always important make sure these interviews sound good to give off a good impression. I like to get the human and relatable side of guests in interviews out, it also settles them down on-air and when you do ask them questions about other things they’re more likely to open up. (With the mayor, it was all about pretending the Lord Mayor was a royal position and playing a fanfare and wearing a really naff attempt at a gold medallion to get him on-side and laughing (0’01”).)

It’s bags of fun doing the Breakfast with Future Radio and I’m having a fab time presenting a fun, friendly show about Norwich and new music.

Sam Day – Future Radio Written Entry

Live Event or Outside Broadcast of the Year

Sponsored by In:Quality

Source FM Christmas Party 2018 – Source FM


Entertainment Show of the Year
 Desi Beats Show with Desi Diva Deepa – Asian Star Radio

With music as my passion and broadcasting as my art, I entered the world of media in 2002 after graduating in Bsc Hons Multimedia Video Production at Buckinghamshire University. Whilst at 6th Form studying media and journalism, I was always greatly fascinated by the way broadcasters host a TV/Radio show and it was a treat to listen to radio on the way to and from school.

Since 2002 I have been in the media and have showcased my TV Broadcasting skills on renowned specialist Asian TV Channels by featuring in a few TV commercials as well as hosting my own Bollywood magazine TV show as a volunteer for many years called ‘Bombay Mix’. Although I fully enjoyed filming the show once a week, I felt my personality wasn’t shining out much and thought as a stepping stone ‘Let’s give radio a try’.

My interest and passion in broadcasting developed further as I started working as a volunteer for Asian Star Radio in 2007. With my grace, witty charm and my ability to entertain the listeners, the past 11 years have been rather progressive. I started hosting one show on Saturdays for six months; I absolutely loved the energy and drive it gave me, it pushed me to do more. This led me to follow my desire and passion and started hosting the weekly Drive time show in 2008. This was a great stepping stone as I was learning new broadcasting skills. This gave me the confidence to give my free time to train new recruits and share the skills and knowledge that I’ve learnt.

After four years I decided to work in education, which sadly meant that I had to step down from the flagship show. None the less I was fortunate to produce and host a Saturday evening 7-10pm Specialist show called ‘Desi Beats’ as a volunteer, which is full of energy, dance floor tracks and chart toppers, perfect for a Saturday night when you’re getting ready to go out. The ‘Desi Beats Show’ has become the talk of the town as my audience know my show features, material and my genre of music, keeping them upto date with all the latest releases and upcoming releases. I liaised with very high profile celebrity guests and worked with PR companies to drive the strongest content and delivery great interviews. The Show has been blessed with high profile guest interviews from DJ’S, singers, actors, comedians. I also assist in covering many shows if presenters aren’t able to make it to work.

Volunteering at Asian Star Radio has given me the chance to host some amazing shows. Over the years I have hosted as a volunteer; East London Mela, Slough Mela, Fusion Asia Festival in Bracknell and Glasgow mela five times. I have also many times represented the station by attending music & awards events doing coverage to get vox-pops for my specialist show. In 2018 I hosted a charity event in association with Give a Kidney, The Heera Foundation (Awareness of mental health) & M.S Society (Multiple Sclerosis Society). I’ve now recently setup my side business doing PR for artists helping them promote their new releases.

I always like to go the extra mile, I realised how powerful social media was. I helped develop, enhance and maximise the company’s social media accounts by actively updating them with good content to broaden the scope and to pull in traffic from other social media platforms. Now after 9 years we have many followers on social media.

 Desi Beats Show with Desi Diva Deepa – Asian Star Radio Written Entry

Speech & Journalism of the Year
Autism & It’s Possibilities – Radio LaB 97.1FM

Autism is a condition that has baffled many and inspired others. It is a condition that is on a wide spectrum and affects people in different ways. Autism can be severe or high functioning and may require differing amounts of care and understanding. A person with autism views the world differently to people without the condition. Therefore, the real world can be a scary place for people with autism. It can create many challenges in socialising and communication. However, this does not mean that people cannot achieve their goals.

Since the late 20th century, autism has grown less taboo throughout the years and this is reflected through the extensive coverage in the media and the open society we live in today. People with autism are no longer locked away in institutions for the disabled or treated like second class citizens. People with autism are able to live happy and fulfilled lives, get married, have children, prosper in education and develop their talents. There is a wide array of support available for people on the autistic spectrum.

Autism and it’s Possibilities explores my life with Asperger’s Syndrome from childhood to adulthood and how I cope with the symptoms each day. The programme also introduces the audience to people on the autistic spectrum and how they are supported in their local community. The programme is positive and offers a voice to the autistic community, especially to those who have been diagnosed late into adulthood and feel alienated from society.

Making this programme for Radio LaB 97.1FM has allowed me to be open about my Asperger’s Syndrome and to embrace my differences with others. It has been a rollercoaster ride with highs and lows but with the right support I can be a valuable asset to society. This has been achieved through my three years at university and developing my social and communication skills.

The documentary also covered the issue of social anxiety that affects every individual with autism. Every person experiences shyness but that does not interfere with the ability to function in life. However, for people on the autistic spectrum, social anxiety is a major obstacle. The submitted audio contains an excerpt from one of the many experts I spoke with, Dr Chris Papadopoulos, who highlighted that people struggle in social interactions as a result of sensory challenges. He uses the scenario of a pub, describing a busy environment through lighting, background noise and that neurotypical people can filter these distractions but autistic individuals cannot. To combat the distractions, time alone in a quiet environment helps the individual to unwind. The audio demonstrates the stark contrast between overload and stimulation.

Sensory overload is a prevalent symptom for any autistic individual and this radio documentary is effective in providing a first-hand perspective, this is through the description of scenarios that can cause sensory overload alongside soundscapes and the distortion of audio. I narrate to the audience about my dislike of overcrowded settings such as buses and shopping malls, in which sounds, smells and sights are a challenge. The experimental use of sound is effective in demonstrating this sensory overload and the hypersensitivity. I had to battle my sensory issues in order to record the sound effects.

I believe choosing participants with Asperger’s Syndrome was been beneficial to me and my documentary, in order to understand and engage with their thought processes. The interviews were tailored to suit each individual and their needs, for example, all interviews were held in a quiet location to avoid sensory overload, allowing the participants to feel comfortable in opening up about their experiences.

The making of this programme has helped me gain useful skills in media production. Learning how to write a script and running order has allowed me to professionally structure a programme that can inform, educate and entertain the public. I can edit audio to a good standard and structure a thirty minute programme using the relevant software.

The programme has also improved organisation skills, this has been achieved through preparation, for example, setting times and dates for interviews and planning my journey via public transport. My organisation skills were also demonstrated through conducting interviews, for example, each interviewee felt comfortable sharing their autistic experiences because each question was constructed with consistency sensitivity and ordered by importance. It has also helped me build my confidence, particularly with talking with these people who I haven’t met before.

The documentary has allowed me to reveal my Asperger’s Syndrome to the public. I have learnt more about autism and tried to provide a platform for other individuals. I believe that I have made a story of motivation to the autistic community and my ambition would be to allow Autism and it’s Possibilities to broadcast on any community radio station that may want to play it in the future.

Autism & It’s Possibilities – Radio LaB 97.1FM Written Entry

Arts & Creative Radio of the Year
Maritime Radio Launch: A Love Song to Greenwich & Woolwich – Maritime Radio

Maritime Radio launched on Easter weekend in 2019.

The management team, presenters, producers and volunteers decided that to celebrate the launch and promote the new radio station, a special piece of audio should be the first thing to play on the air.

Maritime Radio is an upbeat and very community focussed service, which celebrates local life in all of our activities.

We decided that in our first moments on the air, we would show our dedication and love for the local area and sum up everything we are passionate about. Rather than a speech by the managing director, we decided to commission a local author to write a piece that we could read on the air.

NJ Hynes, who has lived in Greenwich for over twenty years, was selected to represent us in verse, from a number of authors and poets. Our team drew up a list of what they love about our home – the Royal Borough of Greenwich, which should be included in the audio, which began to take the from of a poem. The name given to the piece is A Love Song to Greenwich & Woolwich.

The Royal Borough of Greenwich is rich in history, being the birthplace of Elizabeth I, Henry VIII, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the world-famous O2 arena and the Cutty Sark. History and culture is in abundance and we wanted to include reference to this, but also some of the lesser known and unsung heroes of the area – the local market traders, workers on the river, our large Nepali, Somali and Huguenot communities and also nod towards the future – we’re an area of rapid growth. Housing and business are growing as older trades such as shipbuilding have been replaced by tech industries and the banking sector.

Ultimately, we are promoting our area. We began looking for someone to voice the piece, when it occurred to us that our 50 strong team, all from the local area should voice it, in their diverse range of accents and tones.

Once voices had been edited together, a soundscape was produced to play underneath, including effects and a dramatic piece of music building to a final crescendo to match the rousing words at the end of the piece, where our principal voice over artist finally welcomes the audience to Maritime Radio.

Since producing the audio, we have also commissioned a video to be edited to the piece. Long-term, this will be used as a promotional item to continue to assist us in building our audience.

We’re submitting A Love Song to Greenwich & Woolwich, as we’re so very proud of it. What you hear is the very essence of what Maritime Radio is all about. We have included the very first moments we went on air, with the Greenwich Time Signal, as well as an extract from the mayor of Greenwich welcoming listeners to our radio station for the very first time.

Nearly 50 people have been involved in its production, from sourcing material, reading lines and editing.

Finally, the text from the audio has been framed and is on display at two of our local railway stations.

Maritime Radio Launch: A Love Song to Greenwich & Woolwich – Maritime Radio Written Entry

Specialist Music Show of the Year
The Roots Collective – Wycombe Sound

The Roots Collective is co-presented by Martin Clarke and Heather Harrison. Joining Wycombe Sound last year gave them an opportunity to share their love for roots music which they believe appeals to a wide audience with a mixture of Americana, folk, bluegrass and country.

Martin and Heather’s playlist comprises music from their own library. Always on the lookout for new material, they enjoy the interaction of their listeners in sharing favourites and finds. Along with their audience, they journey together getting to know musicians from the surrounding area and further afield including international artists. Martin and Heather are active members British Bluegrass Music Association (BBMA) and even went on a fact-finding tour of Kentucky which gave them access to more music and information, deepening their knowledge and understanding. They are also active members of the Americana Music Association UK which supports The Ramblin’ Roots Review, an annual music festival held in High Wycombe.

They are supporting the growing interest in these upcoming genres which are fast gaining popularity across the country if the number of bluegrass and Americana festivals is anything to go by. Always with the listener in mind, the first hour tends to be upbeat with the second hour designed to ease the audience gently towards the end of the weekend. To further engage them, the choice of material features popular songs alongside others from known and lesser known artists. Music is interspersed with punchy biographies, snippets of information, anecdotes and details of where musicians may be seen live. Each hour focuses on two songs by the same artist with a more in-depth sharing of knowledge in-between.

Martin and Heather understand that listeners of specialist music programmes share their passion of seeing live music. Every week, Heather presents a local gig guide including dates for a broad range of genre recognising that lovers of music often enjoy many musical styles.

The Roots Collective has had several local artists in the studio to showcase upcoming albums and to play live. They also interview at performances and recently managed to obtain an exclusive after-gig interview with vocal legend Paul Young when he was performing with Americana band Los Pacaminos.

Martin and Heather love going to local gigs to see bands performing at music venues across Wycombe Sound’s broadcast area. These local events are highlighted on the show as they appreciate that listeners aren’t always aware of what is happening on their doorstep.

Martin and Heather have an engaging and easy-going on-air relationship; they inject humour with gentle ribbing, topical talk with thought-provoking comments. They have an holistic approach with their listeners’ all-round wellbeing at heart. Participation is encouraged and enjoyed. Listeners can interact during the show and via the Roots Collective’s own website and Facebook page.

The Roots Collective team are constantly reflecting and thinking of new ideas to keep the show fresh and increase audience engagement.

Programme Director Philippa Sawyer says ” The Roots Collective is a fantastic addition to our range of specialist music programmes, providing gems for the connoiseur as well as easy hooks for the beginner. The local gig guide together with regular live music in the studio completes the very slick production. A delight.”

Wycombe Sound launched in October 2016. With a team of 100+ volunteers, from all walks of life and aged 17-80, we serve a target audience aged 35+. Now half-way through our first licence period, we have become a recognised and trusted brand putting the buzz back into High Wycombe, as reflected by our Gold award for Station of the Year 2017 and three further Gold awards in 2018.

The Roots Collective – Wycombe Sound Written Entry

Sports Show of the Year
MônFM Sport – MônFM

Since launching just over two years ago, MônFM Sport has earned its place in North Wales’ sporting community. From covering live matches to hearing from those who take part in sports most have never tried, MônFM Sport gives every sport a level playing field, bringing it to those who can’t be there.

MônFM Sport’s flagship program is broadcast live from our Llangefni Studios every Saturday afternoon. Hosted by Gareth Joy, the three-hour show focuses on sporting news, live commentary from games, guest interviews, and bringing our listeners the fastest results service in North Wales. We even provide our own local classified football results service, immediately after the national classifieds provided by IRN. As shown in the audio submission, local sports results are updated throughout the show. We’ve developed great partnerships with different local sports clubs, who give us access to their results immediately, allowing us to keep our audience up to date.

We’re very aware that our audience in Anglesey and North West Wales love football. It’s the most popular sport in the area. This is reflected in the content produced by MônFM Sport. Given that the area has no major team, rather than focus on a single team as some stations might do, we give all the teams equal representation on air. The focus of the show does change depending on what major sport is being played. For example, during the Six Nations season, a lot of the content will focus around the tournament, reflecting what our audience is talking about.

In recent months, we’ve started to broadcast live commentary from a number of local games. These clubs are rarely given an opportunity by major broadcasters, and MônFM Sport is there to step into the gap. In order to broadcast live from a number of different matches, we’ve been building up our relationships with the area’s clubs, securing a suitable location, and access for our team.

For most live games, we’ve been using a mobile phone, a microphone interface, and Cleanfeed over the mobile data network, with a tech op in the studio. This simple method allows the team to turn up before the game with minimal setup work. It allows them to go out and record interviews with fans, pre-game chats with teams, and generally spread the word about MônFM Sport.

Thanks to our hard work over the last year, we were recently asked to provide the commentary for the Inter-Island Football tournament. From the launch ceremony to being in the stands, we aim to be everywhere, bringing the game to life for those at home.

MônFM Sport covers much more than just football… We’ve covered local Rugby, Tennis, and even Darts! We also try to cover a lot of niche sports. Recently, we’ve had the Walking Football world cup winners in the studio for a chat.

The sports teams also produce a lot of news for our News service. The most recent example of this is the trouble at Bangor City. MônFM news worked with the Sports team to cover this story, producing bulletins, articles, and social media content.

MônFM Sport has a very active online profile. We post daily sports news, weekly video updates, and run local result services for all local sports.

MônFM Sport is a bilingual service, however, for the benefit of this submission, we’ve only included English content, but content in both languages are very similar! Our Welsh language offering is usually the only local sports content available in Welsh and is something we’re very proud of.

MônFM Sport – MônFM Written Entry

Volunteer of the Year
Kate Gregory – Speysound Radio

Kate Gregory is one of the volunteers with Speysound Radio and she became involved 5 years ago when Speysound was going through a rather lean time. Due to quite a lot of presenters leaving for lots of reasons and some moving away, the running of the station had become a rather daunting task for just two directors and Speysound was on the brink of collapse. A plea went out for help, initially for assistance with paperwork which had become “backlogged”, to say the least. Kate heard of the problem and offered her many years of excellent experience despite knowing nothing at all about radio and soon the paperwork was sorted, tidied, filed and up to date. Realising that she could assist further, Kate then turned her financial experience to “the books”, which had also suffered a major setback, and concentrated the power of her magic wand in that direction, undertaking a cost-cutting exercise which slashed more than £1700 off Speysound’s annual running costs.

The foundations of Speysound restored, we realised that this lady was too good to lose and so Kate was asked to join the Board as Administration and Financial Director. Thankfully she accepted and once fully immersed in the running of Speysound, Kate invited husband Marcus (a technical wizard) to come on board too. Now that is a whole other story; let it suffice to say that technically the station moved ahead to where we are today – broadcasting 24/7 from the highest radio transmitter in the UK. Our technical overhaul meant that all our computer systems were updated and Speysound acquired new software which enabled us to broadcast our own content 24/7 for the first time. However, this did mean that we now needed someone to take responsibility for the scheduling. Kate needed no prompting at all to put her hand up for this daily task.

Further challenges were waiting ahead though. After the ceiling collapsed in the portacabins we were using as studios, we urgently had to find a new home. Thankfully a local businessman came to our rescue and we found a fantastic new home. Kate took care of all the administration associated with the move; arranging mail forwarding, changing utility suppliers and negotiating new insurance rates. Not content with all that, when it was decided to broadcast a daily list of what was happening in the broadcasting area, Kate stuck up her hand again and has now also been producing the “Speysound Radio Noticeboard”, which she coordinates, scripts and records for broadcasting every day, since October 2014.

Keeping on top of the filing, paying the bills, raising invoices, scheduling, recording the Noticeboard and everything else obviously wasn’t enough for Kate though, as she found some “free” time, to rebuild and update our website; yet another task which she is still responsible for. In fact, in preparing to write this nomination we asked Kate to give us a list of all the things she does as a volunteer for Speysound – it was a lot longer than we expected, although we did know she does a great deal. Kate is the daily point of contact for all members of Speysound and the hub around which the station revolves and her passion for the station has helped to transform Speysound into a real alternative to local commercial stations. As a Member of the Board, Kate has encouraged presenters to put forward new ideas which, amongst other things, resulted in Speysound starting Outside Broadcasts and we now have an annual diary of at least eight events to attend, with more added every year.

Considering that all Kate does for Speysound is voluntary, her dedication is exemplary. When heading off on holiday she makes sure that the schedule is full for the whole of her absence and records the Noticeboards too. She has also regularly been known to respond to presenters’ emails and even negotiate advertising contracts whilst away on holiday. Any one listening to Speysound will only be aware of Kate thanks to the Noticeboard, but behind the scenes she just keeps everything running smoothly – we’d be lost without her.

Kate Gregory – Speysound Radio Written Entry

Young Person of the Year (under 25)

Sponsored by BBC Local Radio

Emma Snow – Erewash Sound

Emma Snow

Emma joined Erewash Sound when she was 17 and right from the word go has excelled in all areas of the radio station, from planning her shows and sourcing content, producing, presenting and also news reading. Her hard work was recognised at last year’s Community Radio Awards, securing both Bronze and Silver for Best Female and Best Entertainment Show retrospectively.

At just 20 years old, Emma balances her time presenting at Erewash Sound alongside her Broadcast Journalism degree which she started in September 2017. Her experience in community radio has opened doors into the radio industry which allows her to bring skills and awareness of how to interact with target audiences to Erewash Sound. It’s fair to say Emma lives and breathes radio and is determined to make it her career in the future.

Emma has covered every type of show on Erewash Sound, including the breakfast, afternoon, drive-time, weekend and specialist shows across the station. Emma is always keen to learn and her drive, passion and enthusiasm shines through the work she produces both on and off air.
Emma’s reputation has led to local artists and bands requesting interviews with her, as well as a local PR company regularly contacting her with new bands to interview. She knows how important it is to support the local community and give a voice to those who may not necessarily have one. She has interviewed the likes of local bands ‘Celestine’s’ and ‘Vega Bay’, as well as local solo artists such as Lia White and Tilly Greentree. Emma loves to discover local talent and is always on the look out for her next interview.

Emma never fails to get involved in the community by attending a variety of local events. A stand out moment was at the Ilkeston Car Show, where Emma co-hosted on the main stage. Emma was clearly in her element, she was running around chatting to local listeners, getting vox-pops and interviews with local businesses and community figures, as well as doing live phone-ins to the studio. Emma is a particularly skilled interviewer- she conducted the main interview with the leader of the local homeless charity ‘The Canaan Trust’ which Emma handled excellently and highlighted one of the main reasons why Community Radio is so important in a time where local commercial radio is being deregulated.

It doesn’t stop there. Emma has a clear passion for radio and she always wants to help others coming through the station. This has been shown through Emma taking the time to create a social media masterclass, which is now being integrated into our NCFE accredited producer training, where Emma is going to help run the sessions on how to be a producer as well as how presenters and producers should incorporate social media into their shows.

Later this month (June), Emma is hosting the Long Eaton Carnival, where I have no doubt she will excel in engaging the local community and representing Erewash Sound in the best way possible.

Emma is one of our most talented presenters who from first joining the station has been a real asset and has proved to be really versatile in picking up various types of show. She is a wonderful and hardworking member of the Erewash Sound team and I can see nothing but a bright future for her in radio.

Emma Snow – Erewash Sound Written Entry

Sage Person (Over 60)
Geoff Selby – Bro Radio

Geoff Selby is a presenter at Bro Radio and has been at the station since June 2009. Geoff is registered disabled and joined the station with a love for music and radio, after being previously told he would never be able to present on the radio.

Geoff is registered blind, being blind in his left eye and partially sighted in his right meaning he has found it difficult to secure long term employment, giving much of his time to voluntary projects including in a local charity shop with his late wife.

Presenting his first show on Boxing Day in 2009, Geoff continued to support the station at events, meetings and training before securing his own show, the 70’s and 80’s party night in early 2010.

In late 2010 Geoff’s wife passed away suddenly, which led to Geoff being isolated and spending much of his time at Bro Radio to keep him occupied. Over that time, Geoff became more of a regular presenter on air before taking on his programme ‘Geoff and Guests’ in October 2012, which airs Monday to Friday, 10am – 12pm.

Geoff continues to present the show, alongside the 70’s and 80’s Party night, volunteering six days a week and over 1,300 hours in the last twelve months alone.

With his partner Jean, Geoff is committed to growing his show and in the last twelve months and continued to build awareness of Bro Radio, particularly in areas outside of its main FM coverage area as it looks to bring its service to the wider Vale of Glamorgan.

Spending most of his weekends attending local events, Geoff makes effort to meet and get to know all of the Vale Town Mayor’s by visiting their events, helping to build relationships between communities and the station. Geoff regularly attends community fetes, awareness days and local productions, which helps him to meet new people, learn more about what’s going on in the community and build his list of contacts for the programme.

Geoff and Guests regular guests include the Chief Inspector of South Wales Police, Citizens Advice Beurau, Vale of Glamorgan Council staff and leaders, local voluntary organisations and local community newspaper the Glamorgan GEM.

Geoff regularly takes his show on the road, including at the Vale of Glamorgan Agricultural show in August, the largest single day event in the County. Geoff broadcast live from the event as part of a day of activities, on a stage within the Glamorgan Smallholders marque which went on to be awarded best stand at the show.

His old school charm, makes him a big hit with guests, with many returning on a regular basis to update listeners on their work and sticking around following their interview to speak with Geoff off air and learn about him.

Being one of Bro Radio’s older volunteers, Geoff has become a role model to many, giving up his own time to support others, allowing them to sit on his show and learn the basics. Despite his age, Geoff continues to learn from others, particularly younger volunteers who have helped Geoff with everything from social media, basic editing skills and interview techniques, which everyone is happy to provide in their own time.

One volunteer Jacob page who joined Bro Radio at 14 said “Geoff was really welcoming from day one and helped me settle into life at Bro Radio. He allowed me to sit on his show during my work experience and helped me catch the radio bug.”

“I really look up to Geoff and appreciate all the time he has given me over the years”

Geoff Selby – Bro Radio Written Entry

Newcomer of the Year (new to radio in last 12 months)

Sponsored by The Radio Hub

Jenna Myles – FromeFM

Jenna founded the blog www.somersetcool.com showcasing the very best of Somerset. Starting in October 2018, she’s brought this to life on the radio in her talk show ‘Somerset cool live’. The show has built up an incredible buzz, with people talking about Jenna’s talent in the press and on social media.

Jenna’s never been on the radio before and a number of things set her apart.

– The quality of programme content she creates, singlehandedly from scratch

Jenna brings fantastic guests from Somerset and beyond on to her show, to share exciting things happening in our community and county. These are people we wouldn’t have known about or have been able to get on air otherwise – high profile Authors, Artists, Horticulturalists, Chefs, Photographers, Makers and Broadcasters, as well as live food and drink tastings. It’s no surprise to us that stories featured on her Somerset cool show have since been picked up by well-known radio stations. She’s blazing a real trail on FromeFM as someone who uncovers unique things first.

– Jenna’s presenting style is warm and genuine combined with real passion and energy

Her natural curiosity in every guest interview shines through, inspiring her listeners and everyone at the station. She always brings the best out in her guests, with her ability to put people at ease immediately. Her recent interview with wildlife photographer Carl Bovis is a good example. Carl was worried about coming on the show live due to anxiety, but he had a great experience with Jenna and has been back on live radio since.

– Jenna makes every subject accessible for the listener

One of her passions is ‘art for all’ – encouraging people who might feel exhibitions and galleries aren’t for them. It’s been wonderful listening to her interviewing rising stars in the art world, as well as championing local art. She’s shown listeners there is something for everyone and has a real talent for making everyone feel part of her shows. She engages on social media beforehand, which encourages people to tune in, and also finds ways to inject fun. Listeners love the ‘Sixty Second Challenge’ she puts her guests through! The quick-fire questions always uncover something unique.

Outstanding achievements

After only 2 programmes on air, Jenna created/presented a 2-hour Christmas Day special, highlighting charity stories from the local community and beyond. She’s also recently created/presented a 24-hour non-stop radio show on Frome FM to raise funds and awareness for two causes rescuing dogs in the UK and overseas from the meat trade. People tuned in from across the world, and throughout the 24 hours, the quality of programme content was consistently outstanding. Her heartbreaking, inspiring interviews with the causes were handled with sensitivity and emotion. She’s raised over £2,400 and due to her work, FromeFM is also going to be on Channel 4! Jenna collaborated with a cake artist who gifted her an edible sculpture to auction for the charities and ‘Extreme Cake Makers’ filmed the unveiling live at FromeFM. All this in her first year of community broadcasting.

Not only does Jenna’s passion for radio and the high-quality content benefit the station, she publicises us constantly through her blog and to her loyal following on Instagram and Twitter @somersetcool.

We believe Jenna could present a show on a commercial radio station. As Rupert Kirkham, FromeFM Director said:

“We’re very lucky to have Jenna. Her show is a great boon to the station”.

FromeFM Studio Manager and long-term broadcaster Jennie Smith says of Jenna:

“Jenna’s brought warmth, energy and professionalism to the station and is a bright shining star”.

Jenna Myles – FromeFM Written Entry

Innovation of the Year
Pride Community Network – Pride Radio


Podcast of the Year
Rich Seams – New Writing North

Award-winning poet Andrew McMillan takes a deeper look at the poetry of the North, as part of Rich Seams, a brand new podcast series celebrating the best of new and emerging poetry in the North of England.

In this audio entry, you can hear the first five minutes of the final episode of this seven-part podcast. In this finale, Andrew’s journey comes to an end, and he wheels his suitcase back to the New Writing North offices. There, he discusses his travels with Claire Malcolm, the charity’s founding Chief Executive – the diversity of poetry across the north, the differences between disparate areas and urban centres, and the challenges that northern poets encounter.

Together, Andrew and Claire reflect upon his journey, which has seen him recording engaging conversations and performed poetry with groups of poets, at various venues – Leeds, Manchester, Grasmere, Halifax, Newcastle, and at a live recorded event in Durham Town Hall.

Rich Seams was recorded & produced for New Writing North by Jay Sykes. It was commissioned by the Durham Book Festival, which is supported by Durham County Council and Durham University, and made possible by funding for the arts from Arts Council England.

To hear more of the Rich Seams podcast, you can visit www.newwritingnorth.com

Rich Seams – New Writing North Written Entry