Merlin Network One April 1998

DX Information from the British DX Club.

PRESS RELEASE LONDON, Apr.2 - Merlin Communications International is delighted to announce the Merlin Network One service for International Specialist Broadcasters. Following the highly successful response to Merlin Network One, a service that was produced solely to commemorate the first anniversary of Merlin Communications International Limited, it has been decided that the concept behind the service will be extended for a trial period.

Merlin Network One will initially air for eight hours per week to enable a unique mix of specialist programmes to be combined into a single service. Merlin Network One will use the facilities of Country Music Radio, in London, to air the programme strand. Markham Sivak, Business Development Manager, of Merlin Communications International said, "Although we had only planned to air Merlin Network One as a one-off, it soon became apparent that the concept behind the service had huge merit.  Listeners from around the world complimented us, by telephone, fax, e-mail and letter, on the content and urged us to continue with the service.  With that in mind we took the original concept of Merlin Network One and just 48 hours after the close of transmission, the long term plans for the service were in place.  The Executive Producer of Merlin Network One will be, as it was during our birthday celebrations on March 28, Eric Wiltsher. "Eric Wiltsher commented, "We all knew from the beginning that Merlin Network One had to offer something unique to ensure listeners would select a satellite service, in the UK, and shortwave around the world. Therefore, we combined the resources of a number of International Broadcasters and our feelings were rewarded when our audience demanded more.  As one listener put it during the anniversary broadcast, "This is the start of a new broadcasting era" and thanks to Merlin Network

One the potential of a new 'era in radio' is becoming a reality".
Merlin Network One will have an initial line-up of (all times BST):
18.00-20.00 - Radio Caroline presented by Johnny Reece
20.00-22.00 - The Award Winning MediaZoo
22.00-24.00 - Hard Country with CMR's Bryan Chalker
24.00-02.00 - Rock Radio Network

Merlin Network One will air the trial broadcasts every Wednesday starting 8 April. Merlin Network One will air via satellite radio, in the UK, and also be beamed to North America and continental Europe on shortwave radio. There are also plans for an Internet service as well.  For latest details of shortwave frequencies, satellite channels and Internet audio look at one of the following websites: - -

(From Dave Kenny. British DX Club)

South Flintshire Radio 107.4 (Buckley) has been on 27th June to 24th July, right next to Crash FM on 107.6 !



Silk FM (Cheshire)106.9

Macclesfield based Silk FM has begun testing on 106.9 on 100 Watts from Sutton Common and has been logged here on Merseyside from 11th May @ 2100. The official launch was on Bank Holiday Monday 25th May at 1200. This is an 8 year ILR franchise.

Address: Silk FM, Bridge Street, Macclesfield, Cheshire, SK1 6DJ

Radio Towers Damaged In Severe Storms in Wisconsin USA June 1998

A series of severe storms have swept through the Midwest and Northeast over the last few days,

temporarily knocking out at least two AM radio stations.

In Greenfield-Milwaukee, Wisconsin, WMCS-1290 was knocked off the air by storms on May 31, but was back on June 2.

WOKY-920, Milwaukee, lost three of five towers. Presumably they're still operating but with reduced range.

CIAO-530, Brampton, Ontario, was also knocked off the air for a day on May 31, due to power failures.

Scottie McClue goes to Century RadioJune 1998

Controversial late night phone-in host Scottie McClue resigned from EMAP Radio on Friday 19th June, according to an announcement on his

He is to do the phone in on Century FM in the North East and the show is to be carried by Century 105 and possibly by the other Century stations.

Radio Warbreck  1575 Khz. Email : July 1998

Radio Warbreck s started on the Medium Wave in the Blackpool area broadcasting from Warbreck High School. The hours are :0630 to 2200.    World Dx Club secretary  Arthur Ward received it in Northampton, and British DX Club member Alan Gale in Oldham.          The licence runs from 6th to 12th July.

THE FREE RADIO CONTEST 1998 (Organised by Pirate Connection and SRS News) promises prizes such as radio equipment, free radio T-shirts and free subscriptions to Pirate Connection and SRS News during Easter 1998. Contestants should listen to 12 Free Radio stations according to a predetermined timetable. Stations from all over Europe including legendary stations from the 70's and 80's are to take part. Pionts will be based on power, time, and site of the stations recieved, taking the participants location into account. Contest rules are available from: Pirate Connection, Po Box4580, 203 20 Malmo, Sweden. Please send $5 or SEK40 in bank notes. (PC/SRS Communication (BDXC March 1998)


Tarkwa Fined

Operators of Radio Tarkwa in Wirral Merseyside were in court in July following their raid on 15th December '96. An RSL Station (South Flintshire Radio 105.8) apparently Made a complaint of interference which led to the raid. A Fine of 350 Pounds Sterling was imposed plus a staggering 350 Pounds costs, but a number of CD's were returned. Conditional Discharges are now commonplace as well as increased fines.

The Jim Lowe Editorial July 1997

Free Radio on FM has become boring for the average listener during 1997. There are only a handful of low powered stations on occasional Weekday evenings which the average person will probably not hear with an indoor aerial. These station operators usually broadcast to a clique of a few friends living literally round the corner. Transmissions are usually irregular and some stations such as Studio FM have got a cult following due to their 'anything goes' policy of discussing things in everyday language and in graphic detail. RSL stations are appearing sometimes as high as 107.4, which could mean that the Pirate Stations will not have the choices in frequencies enjoyed in the past. This will eventually cause in - fighting. What's New really !!

Free Radio and RSL's

Pirate activity has now deminished here on Merseyside due to the amount of RSL Stations on at the moment. There have been a number of complaints from RSL operators about alleged interference to their transmissions. This is often not due to any interference at all, but people sometimes tune around for an RSL, but pick up a Pirate Transmission with a strong signal instead and assume that, because it is on FM, it is probably blocking reception of the RSL. Pirate Transmissions are often regarded as Public enemy No. 1 by the authorities. How often have you heard of a Pirate operator going to court and being accused of 'causing interference to the Emergency Services' ? That allegation is seldom true and is often used to add 'fuel' to the charges brought by the Radio Investigation Agency. Pirate Radio seems to be regarded like CB Radio was in the early eighties, and the average person doesn't know their AM from their FM. If you tell some people you are involved in Pirate Radio they will probably say "Oh yes, I had a CB once. Breaker Break Good Buddies !

And on the legal side . . . .


New Solar Cycle.

As the sunspot numbers increase, so propagation will improve at higher frequencies (e.g. on the 15, 17, 21 and even the 26 Mhz. bands) both day and night. However, this improvement will inevitably be accompanied by a re- appearance of sudden Ionosphere Disturbances, or Fadeouts which can wipe out Short Wave communications for several minutes at a time during daylight hours. So, if at any time over the next few years you suddenly notice the Short Wave bands go very quiet, it may be the Ionosphere rather than your receiver playing up.

(Communication June 1997)BRITISH DX CLUB


As first reported by Andrew Tett in Communication last month, tests in AM Stereo have continued on the Paris transmitter of Radio Bleue on 864 Khz .It is understood that stereo is likely to continue on this frequency for several more months, after which it may not be extended to other Radio Blueu transmitters. Fair to good stereo reception seems to be possible during daylight hours across most of South East England using a Medium Wave Loop. Several BDXC members managed to obtain AM Stereo receivers in the past - in anticipation of AM Stereo transmissions in Europe - from suppliers in the USA, although they are increasingly hard to come by as most AM Stereo capable receivers (such as the Sony SRF 42and Sangean SR66 Walkmans) have unfortunately been withdrawn from the US market . Anyone visiting Japan may have more luck where apparently AM Stereo is more of a success (David Duckworth, Andrew Tett, and Duncan Stanworth BDXC)


Experimental Digital Short Wave transmissions have been carried out recently by Voice of America. This will mean that computer owners with the appropriate software will be able to follow Short Wave transmissions, even during poor conditions, although the audio quality will be reduced in frequency range. The digital transmissions will be broadcast on a adjacent channel to the existing analogue AM transmissions. On the example broadcast on Radio Netherland,s Media Network recently, the digital noises could be heard in the back ground. (Radio Netherlands Media Network12/6/97)


Heard on Merseyside

#87.8 RAW FM Occasional Sundays

105.4 Studio FM Occasional Evenings

#106.4 CDFM Occasional Evenings

106.6 Pure FM Occasional Weekday Evenings

#106.7 Concept FM 'Bank Holidays,Easter Mondays Pancake Tuesdays & Sheffield Wednesdays'

#107.00 Unid Station (Occasional Evenings)

#107.00 Skyline FM (Occasional Evenings) Various Music

#107.2 Optional FM (Steve Davies) 14/10 @ 0230 + 19/10 @ 0220

#107.6 Commodore FM Testing on low power

#107.9 Cruise FM Occasional Evenings

# Denotes Stereo.


Concept reception was improved last time we were on 26th May. Passion FM now have a webbsite and broadcast at weekends from 0900 to the early hours their webb address is at

Gary Hogg Poulton-le-Fylde near Blackpool

Ian Iredale from West Kirby writes:

Reception was improved this time around, even on a portable radio with a telescopic aerial.

Tony Jevons from Halewood, Liverpool:

Heard Concept FM on 2/01/98.

Julian Woodcock, Audlem, Cheshire

More info about the station please !


Energy 106 Raided by the DTI

Belfast's Energy FM has been raided on 31st May 1997. The station,s mountainside site on Black Mountain was bombarded by DTI Officials, RUC, and British Army Personnel at exactly 10:30 AM. The station's 200 W transmitter was seized by the DTI officials. Station owner Mr. Van Dyke from Monaghan was not available for comment at the time. "The entire NI Free Radio Organisation is now in turmoil , all because some individuals connected with an RSL which never came on air opened their mouth too wide" according to a Kiss FM spokesman. Kiss FM News Kiss FM will be back very soon on 106.00 from a new mountainside site in the Irish Republic. The ERP will be 3 times that of the transmitter that was seized by the DTI. We have also obtained a new site in SLANE Co. Meath. This will improve reception in Drogheda, Nevan and Co. North Co. Dublin.

GNR Sunshine. There appears to be some confusion with developments here. The station was only visited by the DOC. Other developments closed the station down for nearly a month and are now back on air as "Sunshine Radio Can anybody tell us what is happening in this frequency, We sometimes hear UCB with a background buzz and other times hear a stereo carrier or indeed a 1 Khz test tone. We can also sometimes hear UCB's Wicklow transmitter on 87.7

JBGAM is planning to go on 864 Khz Medium Wave in the next month.

(via Gary Hogg).

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