Sound - The Names and the Faces
from the 'Mercia Sound' newspaper
September 1 1979, a new job in a strange
city. The job was to build a new radio station.
A radio station to serve one of the most important areas in the UK that had no
history of its own radio station. Mercia Sound had to change from being just
an idea in a few people's minds to a source of entertainment, information and
news for nearly a million people.
Architects, builders, electricians, acoustics experts and carpet layers all seeking
Technical equipment to be designed and ordered, office furniture to be bought.
Sandy Brown associates produced one of their most successful ever designs for
a studio complex. Most importantly there were staff to find and people to meet.
Staff who would bring their years of experience to ensure that Mercia Sound would
not only be good but that it would be better.
The staff came in two-by-two with Sally from Darlington being joined by Sally
from Coventry and Ian from Sheffield joining Ian from London. John from Leamington
was matched by John from Bewdley leaving Mike standing out like a sore thumb.
Meeting just as many people as possible, was essential if the ideas for the local
station were to come from the people of the area.
We met people morning, noon and night and realised day by day how lucky we were
to have such a rewarding area to work in. We listened to everybody and encouraged
them to learn to use their local radio station.
Now that Mercia Sound is about to become a reality we can look back over the
past months of hard and rewarding work and say "we've tried but now it's
up to all of us". Mercia Sound is local radio for all of us and we want
to continue to hear from you.
Whatever the news we hear, it has different meanings for all of us but whatever
the event, we all like being informed.
A piece of news can sadden one person, cheer another and have no relevance to
a third person perhaps because it doesn't affect him.
Now there is Mercia News. First and foremost it is local - your news about your
area, how a decision will affect you or perhaps even about you!
Secondly, it is brought to you by experienced journalists working and living
in the Mercia Sound area, searching out information relevant to you life that's
happening here and now.
Keeping you informed every half hour during the day from 5am to 7pm and less
frequently up to midnight, of events, sometimes within minutes of their happening,
means that Mercia News is more immediate.
A newsflash can be broadcast at any time. A traffic jam building at 7:30am can
be broadcast over your car radio by 7:32am if not sooner.
All you have to do is tune in to 220 meters Medium Wave and take advantage of
that immediate, local news.
Your radio is your friend. Good reception means good batteries,
in the case of a portable set and a good aerial if you have a
Medium wave (MW) on some radios is called AM and VHF (or FM) is sometimes indicated
by a letter 'U'.
What are the advantages of having both MW and VHF? Most people have sets with
Medium Wave on them, so, although the signals are less clear on Medium Wave and
subject to interference at night, most people listen on Medium Wave.
You can tune in to Mercia Sound on 220 meters Medium Wave (1359khz).
VHF signals are in stereo, and, if you are listening in your car, they do not
fade when you go under a bridge, neither do they suffer from interference at
On the VHF frequency Mercia Sound can be found on 95.9.
If you want a really good signal from your fixed set, a reputable hi-fi dealer
can help you with the erection of an aerial and that way you can be sure of hearing
Mercia Sound loud and clear at all times.
John Manley and his team of Sales Executives started their demanding
task of selling "air time" (commercials) long before
most people had heard of the name of Mercia Sound-no mean task
when you consider that the station had not yet been heard by
anyone at that time.
John's previous long-standing experience with ATV means that he knows this area
and its potential thoroughly. You can reach him on Coventry 51771.
The man with the many voices and the creative skills needed to
make the advertising more effective is Robbie Mason.
As commercial production Manager Robbie's radio experience in Germany and as
a freelance producer with LBC, means that he is a vital member of Mercia Sound's
Ian Rufus, Mercia Sound's Programme Controller, has the mammoth
task of suiting everybody's tastes in bringing, Mercia Sound's
programme planning together.
With a wealth of radio and journalistic experience Ian has worked for LBC, the
UK's first independent radio station as well as working in Sheffield where he
was Head of News for Radio Hallam.
With that track record Ian knows what a successful radio station should sound
like. Mercia Sound - as the 21st independent local radio station - will truly
be the coming of age of Independent Local Radio.
Head of Music
Keeping all Mercia Sound's programmes and presenters adequately
supplied with the appropriate sound to keep the shows on the
road for 19 hours a day is a specialist task that requires a
phenomenal knowledge of many styles of music and the ability
to select the right music for the right mood.
Having had invaluable experience as a presenter himself on two of Britain's most
successful ILR stations - Radio Orwell and Radio Tees - Tony knows he can make
Mercia Sound a musical success.