Full recording: Centre Radio 94 FM

Centre Radio began as a hobby station on December 19th 1986 from Baldoyle in northeast Dublin and came on air during school holidays. Brian Greene of pirate.ie was one of the original founders and John Walsh was also involved. By 1987 the station had developed into a youth project and was training up to 80 young people in radio. From February 1988 Centre was on air every evening and weekend from Bayside. It was one of the last stations in Dublin to closedown at midnight on New Year’s Eve 1988.

This recording is from 94 FM a few days prior to closedown, 27.12.88, and features a youthful Stephen Davitt (aka Daragh O’Sullivan) on air. You can read more about the history of Centre here.

Full recording: CAU FM

CAU FM was a short-lived station broadcasting on 103.5 and later 104.2 FM from Foxrock in south Dublin from mid-1987 until mid-1988. It had its origins in low-power hobby stations set up by Locky Butler and evolved into Phoenix FM. Phoenix began on 25 watts but grew to a 250 watt transmitter before being ordered to close down by the Department of Communications in 1987. Within an hour of the order being delivered, the TX was moved to a site on Three Rock overlooking Dublin and CAU FM was born.

CAU had a good signal all over Dublin, professional sound and slick jingle package. We’re reliably informed that CAU stands for ‘clutterfree and you’ and certainly the station played a lot of uninterrupted music. This full-length recording from 1988 (unfortunately we don’t have a date) includes jingles, ads and links from Locky Butler’s show and gives a good flavour of the sharp on air sound. There’s also a promo for a holiday giveaway! CAU was sold to the religious station Hope FM in the summer of 1988.

Thanks to Locky Butler for additional background information. You can listen to an aircheck of this recording here.

Aircheck: bandscan on 31.12.1988 broadcast on Centre Radio

Centre Radio (94.2 FM from Bayside in northeast Dublin) was one of the few stations to remain on air until the final deadline of midnight on the 31 st of December. In this recording Bobby Gibbson (Brian Greene) and Dave Evans (Eamonn Roe) discuss who is still on air in the early hours of the morning of the 31 st . We then hear another bandscan from just before 8.00am and a very optimistic prediction about the availability of new licences in 1989. You can read about the history of Centre here./

Airchecks: Signal 106

Signal 106 was a hobby station from the southside of Dublin which broadcast at the end of the pirate era. It was set up by the very youthful Kevin Branigan and Mike Ormonde and broadcast from Rathfarnham during the summer and Christmas school holidays of 1988. Because its antenna was on a height the station got out well despite its low power on 106 FM, as indicated by the good reception across the city in Bayside where these recordings were made.

In the first clip we hear Graham Turner (aka Justin Leonard) and Dave Adams (aka Andrew Mangan). The top of the hour jingle is by Seán Ashmore who did many station idents in the late 1980s. The second and third clips feature Graham Turner. The date is 29.12.88, the day before Signal closed down.

Link 1
Link 2

Airchecks: CAU FM

CAU FM was a short-lived station broadcasting on 103.5 FM from Foxrock in south Dublin from the summer of 1987 until the summer of 1988. Although more a hobby than a commercial station, it had a professional sound and slick jingle package and was run by Locky Butler who still works professionally in audio and sound recording. This is an aircheck of a longer recording from 1988 (unfortunately we have no date) featuring Locky Butler on air.

Aircheck: Interview with Radio Dublin on its ‘last day’ of broadcasting from 31.12.88

Centre Radio in Bayside was one of the last stations to close at midnight on New Year’s Eve. Rumours abounded that Radio Dublin was going to defy the new legislation and continue broadcasting so early on the morning of the 31st of December 1988 Bobby Gibbson (Brian Greene) decided to call Radio Dublin live on air. In this recording, he speaks to breakfast presenter Robbie Prior who says that all presenters have been told that this is their final day. However he adds that station owner Eamonn Cooke could well have something up his sleeve. The recording includes poor quality live audio from Radio Dublin’s AM broadcast on 1188 kHz.

Aircheck: Centre Radio, 30-31.12.1988

Aircheck of northeast Dublin Pirate Centre Radio recorded from 23:on 30 30.12.88 to 05:30 on 31.12.1988. On air overnight is Bobby Gibbson (aka Brian Greene). Centre had just finished broadcasting a live variety concert from its studio location at the Mid Sutton Community Centre from 8pm-11pm. The decision was taken to broadcast through the night for the last time before the closedown at midnight on the 31st.

Interview: Eddie Caffrey (Radio Rainbow International, Radio Fax)

On October 20th 2018 over 100 radio anoraks gathered in the Ballsbridge Hotel Dublin. The purpose was to meet and record oral history of the pirate radio era.

We met Eddie Caffrey (aka Heady Eddie) at the event and spoke about the shortwave radio scene in Ireland, in particular Radio Rainbow International and Radio Fax.