Leeds Lines 1 ~ Radio Caroline

Home        News      Biography        Discography        Photos       Media        Shop        Contact

Leeds Lines Home     Leeds Lines 2     Leeds Lines 3     Leeds Lines 4     Leeds Lines 5


Visit to Radio Caroline ~ 21 July 2006

During my visits to the BBC studios in Chelmsford for the radio interviews over the past few weeks, I got talking with the guys there about the good old days of radio, the pirate ships and all that.  It was thanks to the guys at Chelmsford that I met up again with my old friend Dave Cash in Tunbridge Wells a few weeks back.  Chatting with Dave brought back so many memories of the great days of pirate radio, so I decided to head on over and have a look at how the old Radio Caroline ship is doing these days.

At the Tilbury Docks gate I received my pass to proceed to berth 20.  As you approach, you can see two masts in the sky.  The main mast, which was used to transmit Radio Caroline, has now been dismantled for practical and safety reasons.  As you turn into the berth the first sight you see is the stern of the ship.  I was surprised by the size of her as I drove past to turn around and park.

As I entered the ship I saw a man working on the floor.  I said I was looking for Peter, because the guys at Chelmsford told me "just ask for Peter when you get there".  The man said he was Peter and asked who I was.  I said "Gary Walker", and he was very happy to meet me, and he told me that, just the day before, Rick Wakeman was on the ship filming.

After a chat and cups of tea he took me on a tour of the ship.  Peter is the engineer and takes care of everything on her.  I was taken to the bridge and the main studio where it all took place.  It was 40 years ago when I was first here!  They have a library that contains thousands of old vinyl LPs & 45s, which must be worth a fortune.  We looked up the Walker Brothers, and they had quite a few.  I signed one to Peter.

         

Our tour continued into the engine room, which I especially loved because it powered the transmitter that pushed out the hit songs.  Peter told me we were No 54 (Make It Easy), No 132 (The Sun), No 214 (Joanna), No 233 (No Regrets) and No 373 (My Ship), on the ‘All Time Top 500 1964 - 1984.’  What makes it a bit special is that it is all chosen by votes from their listeners.  John Lennon was No 1 with Imagine.  All I can say it how much we all owe to Radio Caroline and if it wasn’t for her and the DJ’s and the team, some of us would not be where we are.

         

I was very lucky to have gone on board and to meet Peter and learn some extra things about her that I never knew.  Did you know that the station was named after John F Kennedy's daughter?  If you have questions for Peter, please email them to us and I will pass them on.  You can also visit the Radio Caroline website.

26 July 2006


Leeds Lines Home     Leeds Lines 2     Leeds Lines 3     Leeds Lines 4     Leeds Lines 5

Home        News      Biography        Discography        Photos       Media        Shop        Contact