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University Radio Surrey
'Production standards', we've heard of them.

URS Radio TimesURS was housed in a cupboard between Pickard and Rawson houses, in Battersea Court. I think it started operating in 1972.

To say that it broadcast, is probably an exaggeration.
There were transmitting loops on the top of each residence block, which produced a signal almost strong enough to be received throughout the building.
There was some rule about it not transmitting beyond the boundaries of the university.
If we could have 'borrowed' a proper commercial Medium Wave transmitter from Marconi and run a wire from the top of Tillingbourne to Rich houses, we could have covered the whole of Guildford. However this would have been illegal and there was the danger of breaking through on the Cathedral's PA system.
So we never did anything like that.

The studio equipment was more practical than sophisticated.
For example in those days you still needed to be able to play 78rpm records. This required steel pin stylus, which had to be changed, or sharpened after every record.
With all the kit being valve based, the reliability wasn't great and you needed to have an oven glove to hand. The transmitter was over the door and if the needle stopped moving, you raced around, lifting panels, looking for the tube that wasn't glowing and 'hot swapping' it. Then waited for it to warm up and hopefully you were back on air.

With a potential audience of only about 2000 people, an amazingly large number of people used to listen in. One Saturday morning at 2am, we thought we were just playing records to ourselves. So we asked people to flash their room lights and got at least two responses from the few floors that we could see.DJ Hil


DJ Hil on the decks.


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This site features photographs taken at the University of Surrey in the 1970's
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