Steady bedside friend

When you’re ill, what is it you really want? Probably to be left alone is the first thing, but in reality, a bit of fuss doesn’t go amiss. Having a family member or friend who will listen to you and cheer you up can make a huge difference. But what about if you’re stuck in a hospital bed?

Hospital radio is crucial to the wellbeing of patients when they are admitted to hospital. It doesn’t matter your age or background, a hospital radio station will usually be there for you, free of charge, throughout your entire stay. Admittedly, some of the programmes will be pre-recorded because the volunteers are at work, but because of the diverse people that make up the membership of a station, so many eclectic programmes can broadcast LIVE at any time.

I’ve heard first hand from patients when I have visited them or just when they have rung my programme who have been so grateful that we have spoken to them, been there in the middle of the night when the friends and family have gone home, that they have felt instant relief. They feel as though they have not been forgotten, and that they are being treated normally, and our role as broadcasters in this setting is to make each and every one of our listeners feel valued as individuals. We get that opportunity to speak directly to them, and meet them, and that is something corporate stations do not do.

Radio Cherwell has a rich and diverse mix of programmes for its output and next year will celebrate 50 years of broadcasting to Oxford’s hospitals. Whilst I myself have been gracing the airwaves for just shy of twelve years, some of our members have been offering their time for a much longer period, such is their dedication to this institution.

The Oxford Mail recently reported a total of 230 years had been racked up between just a few members alone. See the report HERE. It’s a fantastic achievement. I wonder whether I’ll ever match it. It’s certainly something I love doing.

Perhaps when I reach the milestone of 45 years service as some of our members have completed, the station might not exist. I’d like to think it will though – it’s done well this far. With support it can, and the benefits to patients health has been researched and proven to have a substantial positive impact. Long may Radio Cherwell continue. Long may hospital radio continue.

Find out more about our recent media coverage HERE



Leave a Reply