Community station Maritime Radio to launch in September from Shrewsbury House

Duncan Martin
Duncan Martin plans to launch Maritime Radio on 1 September

Troubled community centre Shrewsbury House is to get a new lease of life as the base for community radio station Maritime Radio, which will launch on 1 September.

The station, which has broadcast on two temporary licences in recent years, was given a full-time FM licence last year by broadcast regulator Ofcom.

The station says it had 7,000 listeners during its last spell on air, in 2016, where it broadcast from the Valley Central community facility at Charlton Athletic’s stadium.

Now it has chosen Shrewsbury House in Shooters Hill as its full-time base, a much-needed fillip for a venue which has suffered from financial problems and the loss off its trustees.

Shrewsbury House Community Association chair John Mills says: “Shrewsbury House Community Centre is delighted to be able to support Maritime Radio. Community Radio is the perfect medium for making contact with people who are socially isolated and it’s the ideal platform from which Shrewsbury House can reach out to a wider and more diverse audience. We look forward to working together.”

Programme director Duncan Martin says: “Maritime Radio is all about local – so Shrewsbury House is the perfect base for us. We are planning a schedule full of local content, which is relevant to the audience in Greenwich borough. We’ll be talking about everything that is going on in the area as well as reporting on local news and events.”

The station is now looking to local businesses for advertising and sponsorship.

Greenwich borough’s last community station, RTM Radio, was born in 1990 out of the old cable station Radio Thamesmead. It changed its name to Millennium 106.8 in 1997, then Time 106.8 in 2003, before closing six years later.

A similar fate befell a sister station for Lewisham, which began full-time life as New Cross-based First Love Radio in 1999, before becoming Fusion 107.3 and Time 107.3, then South London Radio before also closing in 2009.

Unlike its predecessors, Maritime Radio is run by a community interest company, with all profit reinvested back into the radio station.

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