1988 and 1990
TIME to unwind for the 8 Towns team during the first ' hectic but fun' Linnet Clough broadcast in July '88. Andy Collier, Graham Hart, Pete Hindley, Mick Ryan, Bob Chanin* and Mike Wallbank.
* Beardless for the summer!
Making waves over Mellor !
in our improvised
studio at Linnet Clough, July '90.
Wombling for free!
All in a day's work for Andy Hoyle & Mick Ryan ~ our official Uncle Bulgaria duo
EARLY in 1988 Roadshow / Special Events manager Mick Ryan received a phone call from Bob Moores, a local Scout leader who was planning a three-day summer rally for the Scouts of Greater Manchester East (Tameside, Glossop, Stockport and Manchester).
Bob had heard of our successful Roadshows at local community events and felt we could play a useful role in the "Link 88" weekend at the Linnet Clough Scout Camp in Mellor. As many as 1,500 Scouts and leaders would be on site for the weekend taking part in a variety of activities and challenges.
Mick immediately saw the potential for an on-site radio station to report on events around the site, announce events coming up and to get the Scouts involved by presenting their own news items, jokes and music requests.
The Home Office approved our request for a Special Event Radio Licence and allocated the frequency of 1602 KHz on the Medium Wave, with strict limitations on the strength of signal which, we were told, must not exceed the agreed coverage area, i.e. the boundaries of Linnet Clough.
Link 88 was a landmark in in 8 Towns' history, a mad, hectic three days but very rewarding for everyone involved. The radio station - based in a log cabin near the entrance to the site - was well received...by those who could hear it. Despite everyone's best efforts - which included shinning up trees with aerial cable in the
early hours of Saturday - there were numerous technical hitches and as a result, reception was disappointingly limited.
After such a steep learning curve, we were delighted to be invited back to Linnet Clough to do it all over again at another county Scouts' rally in July 1990, to celebrate the camp's 21st birthday. This time, we had a more prominent and visible location in a portakabin-type building at the heart of the campsite.
Everyone could hear us - loud and clear - and the response from Scouts, leaders and helpers on site was fantastic. Meanwhile, there were reports that a 'new radio station' had been heard on 1602 in the Hyde area... surely not .....
Craig Etchells in the 1990 Linnet Clough studio, which he created with support from Marc Farr and Phil Hurst