Batley and Spen MP Tracy Brabin encouraged people to tune into a radio service helping to make hospital stays more bearable, when she opened its newly refurbished studio.
HWD (Heavy Woolen District) Hospital Radio’s main studio has had a major upgrade to make use of the latest broadcasting technology.
The station began in 1952, with its very first studio housed in former Batley Hospital and has been at its current home since Dewsbury and District Hospital opened in the late 1980s.
HWD Hospital Radio is a charity and relies on fundraising and donations to keep running. All of its presenters, back-room staff and request visitors are volunteers, with all money going to pay for the upkeep of equipment and broadcasting licences.
The station now broadcasts on it’s own website which can be found online here.
Tracy visited the studio to perform the official opening and said:
“HWD Hospital Radio is a brilliant example of a local charity which has been entertaining hospital patients and their families, and serving as an excellent springboard for budding broadcasters for 65 years!
“I encourage local people to tune in, and to take opportunities to support this important charity which is providing an excellent local service.”
Chairman of HWD Radio, Mike Binns said:
“Hospital radio has long been the training ground for people wanting to get into broadcasting as a career and our station has been the springboard for a lot of talent you’ll hear on the radio across the country today, including local commercial and BBC stations.
“It’s important that we keep up to date with the latest technology so our presenters can get a good understanding of what to expect if they decide to enter the world of broadcasting full time.
“Our new mixing desk fits perfectly with today’s style of radio, which is based around computer play-out systems – a bit like a bigger and more sophisticated version of the MP3 music player you might have at home.”
Ann Wathall, Patient Experience Manager for Mid Yorkshire Hospitals Trust added:
“Staying in hospital means being away from family and friends and HWD Hospital Radio really does try and bridge that gap to ensure patients are kept entertained during their stay.
“This is a fantastic resource and it’s great to see the station investing both in upgraded equipment and also in the training of volunteers who could well be our radio stars of the future.”