Radio Snowflake on New Year’s Day 1984

Radio Snowflake on New Year's Day 1984
Charlie Sheehan in the Radio Sandymount studio (courtesy Dave Reddy).

Ireland’s original Christmas station was Radio Snowflake, which broadcast every festive season from 1982 to 1988 and in later years online. It was set up by Dave Reddy of the Community Broadcasting Co-operative (CBC) who also ran pop-up stations such as Radio Sandymount and Radio Donnybrook.

Radio Snowflake on New Year's Day 1984
David Baker in the Radio Donnybrook studio (courtesy Dave Reddy).

This recording of Radio Snowflake was made in the early hours of 1st January 1984 from 0330-0430 (with some airchecks) and features well-known presenters on the CBC stations, Charlie Sheehan and David Baker. Listeners phone in with requests and dedications, an unpredictable venture given the time of night and year. The recording was made from 99.9 FM and is donated kindly by David Baker.

The original Christmas station: Radio Snowflake

The original Christmas station: Radio Snowflake
A Radio Snowflake flyer from c. 1986 (courtesy of Ian Biggar).

Radio Snowflake was the original Christmas station, set up by Dave Reddy of the Community Broadcasting Co-operative (CBC) in 1982. The CBC rang temporary festival stations around Dublin in locations such as Glasnevin, Ringsend and Donnybrook and also broadcast Radio Snowflake around Christmas each year.

This recording was made from 1512 kHz AM on this day, 15th December 1984 from 1345-1430. David Baker, a well-known voice of CBC and other pirates, is on air with his usual mix of easy listening music and community news. There is plenty of co-channel mixing, possibly from Wicklow Community Radio on the same frequency. 1512 or 1530 were the usual AM frequencies for CBC with various low-powered FM channels in operation. 99.9 MHz is announced in this recording.

David Baker continued to run Radio Snowflake online until 2019, using many of the original presenters. Christmas FM comes on air every year on a temporary licence in various cities and towns across Ireland.

The recording is from the Skywave Tapes Collection. Skywave Radio International was a shortwave station broadcasting from Baldoyle in northeast Dublin.