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Community Radio

On Friday 28th February 2014, Future Radio was mentioned in the House of Commons. Ed Vaizey, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), was talking about a recent community radio project we were involved in and said:

“The recent ‘Connect:Transmit’ project is a good example of how community radio comes together to support skills and training for young people. It was funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and co-ordinated by Radio Regen, a charity supporting the community radio sector. It worked with four community radio stations: Shmu FM in Aberdeen, BCB in Bradford, Future Radio in Norwich, and Preston FM.”

It’s obviously great to hear Future Radio being mentioned in parliament as a ‘good example’ – and I am very proud of everyone who was involved in delivering our part of the project.

Ed Vaizey spoke at length about Community Radio and the importance of the sector:

“The framework for community radio was set up in 2004 by the last Government. In my view, it has been an astounding success. Community radio is run by not-for-profit organisations that provide a social gain to the communities they serve. It provides original, distinctive and—crucially—local output, and relies on a huge amount of effort and support, with stations receiving an average of around 214 volunteering hours every week.”

As well as managing Future Radio, I am also a director for the Community Media Association (CMA). Mr Vaizey was also complimentary about the work of the CMA:

“Community stations are supported by the Community Media Association, which does a fantastic job of representing the sector and providing information and advice to stations and prospective start-ups.”

The CMA is committed to promoting access to the media for people and communities. They enable people to establish and develop community-based communications media for empowerment, cultural expression, information and entertainment. The CMA also represents the community media sector to Government, industry and regulatory bodies.

What’s fantastic about being mentioned by Ed Vaizey in parliament is that it reinforces the view that Future Radio is one of top community radio stations in the UK. What’s better still is that we have hundreds of volunteers from this fine city to thank for our fantastic reputation.

I’m really proud that Future Radio has been recognised as an example of best practice in the House of Commons. I hope Norwich is proud too.

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