Station Founders... Found!!!
Radio Skerne has been broadcasting to the patients and staff of Darlington Memorial Hospital for more than two decades.
2006 saw the 21st Anniversary of the station and after a little bit of investigative work, volunteers at the station have tracked down two of the founding members.
Brian and Eleanor Bennett were instrumental in the setting up of our broadcasting service.
Back in the days when the hospital did not have its own radio station, BBC local radio was distributed on a small scale to some of the patients.
However, after a visit to Bishop Auckland Hospital, several members of staff and people associated with Darlington Memorial Hospital decided to form their own station.
After gaining advice from several sources, the team from Darlington decided to go ahead and they utilised the expertise of Mr and Mrs Bennett.
Brian and Eleanor attended the inaugural meeting of what was to become Radio Skerne. It was at this meeting that the couple were asked to play a major part in spearheading the charity.
Mr Bennett became the very first Station Manager of Darlington Hospital Radio and his wife played an active and important part in the running of the station.
Some of our long standing members recalled the early days of the station. Former Chairman of Radio Skerne, Neil Sykes, noted that times have changed: "I remember being a volunteer in the early days of the station.
"Things were a bit different then, to what they are now. I remember that the male presenters had to wear a collar and tie when on-air.
"Brian was one of the leaders at the station and he believed that this dress code should be adhered to - to give an impression of professionalism.
"If you look at the pictures of presenters and newsreaders from the early days of BBC radio, you will see that they all had to be dressed up to go on-air."
The husband and wife team were tracked down by station members and they were asked to visit the station. However, the couple have moved out of the area, as Eleanor Bennett explains: "It would have been nice to see how it's all going now, but we live in Northern Ireland."
Mr Bennett is a little unwell at the moment, but Mrs Bennett says that he can still recall the early days of Radio Skerne: "Brian remembers some of his time at the station and he recalls some of the members of the station.
"However, Brian and I do want to send our best wishes to all the current members. We can't believe that 21 years have passed and we'd like to wish the station a very Happy Birthday."
If you have been involved in Darlington Hosptal Radio during the ealy years, please do not hesitate to get in touch with the station. The volunteers at Radio Skerne would like to get in touch with past members and offer them an opportunity to have a look around our studios.
To contact the station, telephone 01325 743304 or e-mail the studio on: email@example.com
Alternatively, our address is:
Darlington Hospital Radio (Radio Skerne)
C/o Darlington Memorial Hospital