Monmouthshire community radio is long overdue

Monmouthshire’s own community radio station is long overdue, says Liberal Democrat Senedd Candidate Jo Watkins.

Local radio enthusiasts, volunteers, community representatives and business leaders are being asked to connect Monmouthshire communities and combat Covid-related isolation.

In an appeal to Monmouthshire’s radio enthusiasts, volunteers, community representatives and business leaders to form a not-for-profit Radio Monmouthshire registered company, Councillor Watkins said: “Monmouthshire is in a strong position to be considered for a community radio broadcast licence. A concerted effort to win a broadcast licence is long overdue. It’s time for Monmouthshire to step up to the microphone.”

The Lib Dem Senedd Candidate and Monmouthshire CC councillor for Caldicot sees community radio station as much more than just a platform for playing music: “Older people, people with disabilities and non-technical people often prefer listening to radio for information and chat rather than using social media or downloading apps. We need to encourage community communication across Monmouthshire and community radio is ideal for this.

“Monmouthshire needs a team of local people – from local radio enthusiasts and volunteers to community representatives and business leaders – who can pick up this community radio ball and run with it,” added Councillor Watkins.

Councillor Watkins believes that community radio also provides excellent opportunities for volunteering and for skills development: “Community radio offers countless volunteering opportunities for management, programming, presenting, community outreach, fund-raising, training and administration, but the first priority is to bring together a dynamic, focused and creative team to take the Radio Monmouthshire licence application forward.”

Ofcom currently has no immediate plans to offer any more FM licences for community radio stations whilst it is administering the Small-Scale DAB roll-out. The area is currently served by commercial station Sunshine Radio on 106.2FM.