Hospital radio tunes in to huge lottery grant

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BOSSES at Wrightington Hospital Radio are celebrating after scooping nearly £10,000 from The Big Lottery, Awards For All.

The grant will be used to improve the quality of the service they offer to patients and their families as well as providing an experience for budding presenters which could help them to develop a career in broadcasting.

Wrightington Hospital Radio provides a broadcast service to patients at Wrightington Hospital and The Royal Albert Edward Infirmary in Wigan and has been doing so since 1973.

Diane Herring, the Chair of Hospital Radio said: “A couple of years ago we moved our studio into the Patient Information Centre at Wrightington but the cost of moving did not allow us to update our equipment. At the time we were able to replace our mixing desk, with the help of The Wrightington Hospital League Of Friends but, in moving, much of our older equipment has shown its age and is no longer as reliable as it could be. We will use funding to replace broadcast equipment such as CD players, microphones, headsets and amplifiers. “

She added: “We will use the funding to replace, improve and develop our ability to broadcast quality programming to the patients, their families and friends at the hospitals and units we serve, and also to the wider community.

“The studio has also invested in a new professional standard broadcast software package. It will allow us to improve our programmes and schedule broadcasts throughout twenty four hours. Training is provided within the package which will be cascaded to other volunteers allowing them to gain the skills of professional broadcasters.

“Being in hospital can make people feel vulnerable and in need of re-assurance, especially for those who have had to travel very large distances to receive treatment as they do at our base hospital, Wrightington. Providing a dedicated, quality radio service, 24 hours a day, does reduce these feelings and therefore aids recovery. After 40 years of broadcasting we needed to update equipment to match modern standards and improve our reliability and quality, ensuring a better patient experience.

“This grant has made this possible. We will also be able to extend the range of programmes available. With the possibility of internet broadcasting we can involve family and friends in the programme experience, especially for those whose friends cannot travel to the hospital.”

Wrightington Hospital Radio is always looking for new volunteers to further develop our ability to providing a wide range of programme over as much of the week as possible. We are looking for presenters, ward visitors and other supporting members. Anyone interested should contact them by email at wrightingtonhospitalradio@hotmail.com

Since the National Lottery began in 1994, £33 billion has been raised and more than 450,000 grants awarded.