Saturday, September 13, 2014

Worrying times

I've been a little quiet with my words on the blog in the last few weeks - there's always something to keep me busy. But I've been tuning the bands and doing plenty of radio listening, although the top of the MW in particular has gone very quiet of late. The reason: the Agentschap Telecom (AT) has been very active in the Netherlands. 

In the last few years the proliferation of high-power FM pirates has kept the AT very busy, but as more and more of these stations have been taken off air while fines become ever bigger, it seems attention has been turned to pirates broadcasting on MW.

A few weeks ago I heard that Radio 0511 was taken off air, a station that has been broadcasting every Sunday for some time. Another who can be heard with a regular weekend programme is Radio Sanussie on 1512. However, I understand they had a visit from the AT last Sunday. From what I hear, other stations who have been told to cease transmissions include Denappel, Sterrekijker and Bluebird. They could also be facing payment of a hefty fine.

So, if you think MW is a little quiet when you are tuning around for pirates, increased AT activity could be the reason as stations take a slightly lower profile.


  1. Sad news. It's always bad for me to hear that pirate stations are being targetted - FM or AM, but I ask myself why on earth the AT should be taking off medium wave operations in particular. The Dutch have a strong tradition of free radio broadcasting that dates back at least to the 1940's. It has strengthened and enriched the democracy of this most liberal of European countries. As the AM bands are abandoned by larger, commercial radio stations, so there is a real opportunity for them to be opened out for hobby broadcasters. Solidarity with the Dutch pirates - let's hope that the AT stop wasting taxpayers cash on raids soon.

    Meanwhile, it may be of some consolation to the AM operators, that I can regularly hear stations here in Bristol in the West of the United Kingdom, on a portable radio without any external antenna. I cannot always identify the stations, as I do not speak Dutch, but most nights a good signal or two is to be heard. Just lately, I have noted Radio Calypso and Radio Bluebird with highly listenable programmes.


  2. I agree Terry and as I tune the loop now, it's to listen to the more interesting broadcasts from the Dutch Pirates !