Welcome from the Chair
With 40 years under its belt and many awards to its name where does Radio Cherwell go from here? As the old saying goes, nothing stays the same.
Over the last few years there have been dramatic improvements in medical treatment, with a significant reduction in the number of days many patients stay in hospital. The Oxford Radcliffe Hospital Trust has built many fine new facilities and has closed the old Radcliffe Infirmary, whilst the Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre NHS Trust has almost completely rebuilt its hospital to meet the needs of a new millennium. However there are still patients lying in hospital beds that need cheering up, to be kept in touch with what is going on around them within the hospitals and in the world at large. There is also over 9,000 hospital staff that could benefit from a radio station that keeps them in touch and that is a potential for new listeners.
Radio Cherwell is constantly casting its net very wide to find people who are prepared to give their time for nothing in order to produce a wide variety of professional programmes and to spend time on hospital wards talking to the lonely, entertaining the bored and comforting the concerned.
Producing programmes is just one part of the equation. Hospital radio stations have traditionally used a cable system to bring programmes to patients in hospital wards. Radio transmitters are expensive, difficult to get licences for and often cannot be received inside buildings. Modern cabled systems, initially seen as a great improvement are now proving to be costly, complex and not very viable for the companies providing them. This produces yet another challenge.
This year sees the launch of Radio Cherwell Internet streaming linking patients in hospital with friends and family throughout the world via the web. Current plans include a portable radio studio for the Children's Hospital and the introduction of alternative ways of hearing Radio Cherwell within the hospitals.
To provide this service Radio Cherwell receives the cooperation and support of the ORH Trust, the NOC NH Trust, hospital staff and the voluntary organisations within each hospital. The support given from those who have advertised in this magazine, from businesses and members of the public, is also vital. To all of you my heartfelt thanks which I would also like to extend to my dedicated band of volunteers
If you are reading this from a hospital bed, I do wish you a speedy recovery and hope we have helped your stay in hospital to be a bit more bearable.
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