Angel Radio could become community hub in new Havant home

Station manager ''Tony Smith in the Havant studio of Angel Radio
Station manager ''Tony Smith in the Havant studio of Angel Radio
Louise Dean, Cherry Liquor, Emily Brett

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THE presenters on nostalgia station Angel Radio have always considered themselves part of the community.

And if founder Tony Smith’s plans come off that will be even more so.

The station in Market Parade, Havant, is so successful that they need bigger premises to house the studios and thousands of records.

In the next few months two blocks of shops and flats opposite will be bulldozed by developers as part of the regeneration of the area.

Mr Smith said the noise from the demolition and subsequent building work will disturb the radio broadcasts.

He has contacted the letting agents for the former Age Concern advice centre, close to the Meridian Shopping Centre, to see whether he can on the building.

If he is successful the space would also be used as community centre and potentially another advice centre for older people.

Mr Smith said: ‘We don’t have to move out but it’s going to be very difficult to do programmes once the work has started because it will be very noisy.

‘We’re also in a building that’s too small for us anyway so that’s why we’re looking for alternative accommodation.

‘I’ve visited a couple of places but the place we’re most interested in is the former Age Concern Advice Centre.

‘It would be perfect if we could share it with an organisation like Community First which looks after the voluntary sector.

‘It’s the perfect place. It’s the right size for us and we could have a little community centre there as well. There’s a bar area and lots of seating.’

A lot will depend on whether Angel Radio is awarded an FM licence on the 107.4 frequency which is currently leased by The Breeze radio station.

Ofcom will rule in the summer whether Angel can take it over and, if it is successful, it could broadcast across the south rather than just the Havant area.

That will mean more money from advertisers and more cash to use on rent.

Mr Smith added: ‘It’s difficult at the moment because we don’t know if we’re going to get it. But if we do it will mean we’ll have more money for new premises.’

On March 4, mayor of Havant Marjorie Smallcorn will play her favourite music from 12.30pm.

Angel Radio is run mainly on donations from supporters. On March 10 listeners can pay to have their favourite record played.

To donate go to angelradio.tel or call (023) 9248 1988.