Radio Royal 60th anniversary gets Queen’s seal of approval
The Queen has congratulated a group of Bradford volunteers whose hospital radio station is celebrating 60 years’ service to patients.
Radio Royal, which is based at the Bradford Royal Infirmary, started broadcasting back in 1952 – the same year as the Queen ascended to the throne after the death of her father, King George VI.
When volunteer Chris Fisher wrote congratulating the monarch on her own Diamond Jubilee radio station manager George Sumner says the group were delighted to receive a message of congratulations back.
The Queen’s lady-in-waiting, Susan Hussey, wrote to the volunteers expressing Her Majesty’s thanks and added: “I am sending to you the staff, patients, nurses and volunteers of Radio Royal her Majesty’s good wishes on your sixtieth anniversary, and thank you very much for your kind message of loyalty and support for The Queen in this, her Diamond Jubilee year.”
Radio Royal chairman, George Sumner, said the Monarch’s response had spurred the group in organising their own celebrations.
He continued: “We wrote to the Queen at the start of this year to let her that we too were celebrating our 60th broadcasting anniversary in 2012 and we couldn’t believe it when we received a letter back from her lady-in-waiting passing on her good wishes for our own festivities.
“Over the years, Radio Royal has made a huge contribution to the life of patients during their time at the Bradford Royal Infirmary and we hope that his success continues in the years to come.
“I’d just like to thank all those volunteers who have given their time so selflessly for the better of others.”
Since the station was opened by the late Robert Morris, Radio Royal has carried out more than 22,250 hours of broadcasting and played many thousands of requests for patients and their relatives.
In its early days, the presenters had to borrow records from a local music shop in order to play songs that had been asked for. And, once duly aired, they were put back in their sleeves and returned the same night.
Over 2012, Radio Royal, which is a charity organisation in its’ own right, is hoping to organise events throughout the hospital with its celebrity patrons which include Black Lace and former snooker champion, Joe Johnson, amongst others.
Further information about forthcoming celebratory events, Radio Royal or becoming a volunteer on the station can be obtained by contacting George on 01422 350161 or Chris Heaton, voluntary services nurse manager on 01274 364309.
George added: “You don’t need a radio background to get involved and we are especially keen to recruit those people with plenty of time on their hands so they can make a valuable contribution to hospital radio and the benefit of the hospital and the patients.”