Radio West was a large station broadcasting to the midlands from 1982, first on 1071 kHz and then on 765 kHz as in the compliments slip. Acquiring the old Radio Nova 10kW transmitter, it could be heard far and wide especially when it moved to the clearer channel of 702 kHz. By 1988 Radio West was styling itself as ‘West National Radio 3’ and claiming to be nationwide, based on the 10kW AM rig and a chain of FM transmitters stretching from Dublin to Galway.
This recording is from the 18th of May 1983 from 1908-1925 and features Davina Carr on air with a country programme, a style of music popularised by rural stations such as Radio West. There is no mention of the raid on Radio Nova that morning, although Davina explains that the station had been off the air earlier due to technical issues. Radio West was among those stations to close down temporarily following the other raid on Sunshine Radio on the 19th of May. You can hear airchecks and jingles from Radio West here.
This is a snippet from Eddie Caffrey’s ‘Afternoon Delight’ programme on Boyneside Radio from Drogheda on the 18th of May 1983 from 1614-1632, recorded from 1332 kHz/225 metres. There is no mention of the raid on Radio Nova that morning but pirates throughout the country were becoming nervous. Many Dublin stations closed voluntarily the following day following another raid on Sunshine Radio but Boyneside stayed on the air.
This recording is from the Skywave Tapes Collection. Skywave Radio International broadcast a shortwave station in the 1980s from Baldoyle in northeast Dublin.
We’ve covered the Limerick scene regularly on this page as it had many notable pirates in the late 1970s and 1980s. One of the more memorable stations was Raidió Luimní run by the inimitable John ‘the Man’ Frawley (RIP) from 1978 to 1988.
This recording, courtesy of Ian Biggar, is of John the Man on his popular breakfast programme from 0734-0855 on the 20th of April 1983. The shorter recording below from the 17th of August 1981 is courtesy of Liam Byrne. You can hear plenty more about the Limerick pirates here.
Westside Radio broadcast on 290 metres (1035 kHz) and began its life as Double R Radio in Inchicore in the house of the late Seán Day (Murphy). It migrated between various hotels and pubs in the city. In early 1983, Gerard Roe reported in Irish Radio News that Westside had tested on a number of occasions on 290 metres from a site in Mulhuddart in the northwest of the city with a strong signal and good audio quality. They were later reported to have run into legal trouble and were told to vacate the pub in Mulhuddart from where they were broadcasting. This recording was made on the 18th of March 1983, the day of the raid on Radio Nova which led many stations to close down temporarily. Westside returned but not for long because Anoraks UK reported in July that it had closed down ‘due to interference with a computer’. According to Offshore Echoes in October 1983, one theory circulating was that as the station was based on licensed premises, the pub owner didn’t want to jeopardise their forthcoming licence renewal.
Westside merged with ABC Radio to become Radio Annabel, which began testing by September 1983 on 1035 kHz and 98 MHz FM. Some of those involved in Westside set up Blanchardstown Community Radio in a near-derelict building on the main street in the west Dublin suburb. The second undated clip below is also from 290 metres, although the very start is clipped. It is an advertising promo for Westside voiced by Gerry Marsden who took over management of the station in 1983 and would later work in Radio Dublin. There is no link with the long-running shortwave pirate Westside Radio International. Thanks to Ian Biggar and Paul Shepherd for additional information.
This recording is from the Skywaves Tapes Collection. Skywave Radio International was a shortwave station in the 1980s from Baldoyle in northeast Dublin.
Treble TR was Dublin’s country and Irish music station and broadcast from 1981 until the end of 1988 on 945 kHz and 99.5 FM. This recording is from the 18th of May 1983, the day of the Radio Nova raid when panic took root among pirates throughout the country. This recording (presenter unidentified) is of part of the Top 20 of country and Irish, a programme sponsored by none other than Nova Dry Cleaners! A barking dog also features but there is no mention of the Nova raid. Like many other stations, Treble TR closed temporarily the following day.
This recording from a noisy 945 kHz AM is from the Skywave Tapes Collection. Skywave Radio International broadcast a shortwave station in the 1980s from Baldoyle in northeast Dublin.