All change for hospital radio

IT was the end of an era for Pontefract hospital radio broadcasting last month week as MY Radio, PGI’s very own radio station, closed down.

Broadcasting at PGI began initially with Radio Ackton, which broadcast from Ackton Hospital to both the PGI and Hightown hospitals via a loop network.

When Ackton Hospital closed and Hightown underwent a change of use, broadcasting continued from a purpose built studio at PGI, still using the name Radio Ackton.

Later it would become Castle Radio then take the name MY Radio after the Mid Yorkshire Health Trust.

Over the years a variety of programmes were broadcast including commentaries from local rugby matches and radio plays. The station was also one of the first to tackle both ME and AIDS awareness with special programmes including a live report from an event in London and took the world ouside to the patients’ bedsides with a series of humaitarian aid missions.

Due to its sustaining system it was able to broadcast 24 hours a day.

The last live show was presented by Esther Holmes, with her usual mix of mirth music and merriment. It is not the end for MY Radio though as there is to be a purpose built studio at Pinderfields hospital and the presenters will take to the airwaves once more.

I presented the classics programme. I joined the station in 1994 and did my last show on Sunday February 20.

We have had some good times at PGI, interacting with patients for request shows and competitions in addition to friendly banter and competitions between presenters, some of whom have gone on to broadcasting careers.

Although we were sorry to see the end of the service at Pontefract, we are looking forward to the new era at Pinderfields where we hope to gain more staff and expand our services through webcast and become a community radio station, something indeed to look forward to and a new challenge.

TREVOR WAINWRIGHT

Lower Oxford Street

Castleford