Gateway FM Wins Five Year Community Licence for Basildon and East Thurrock

IN A PRESS RELEASE issued today, Gateway FM had this to say:-

It is with great pleasure and a deep sense of pride in the achievement of all our members that I am delighted to tell you that Gateway FM has been awarded its five year FM licence to broadcast a community radio service to our area.

Now that the licence issue is clear, we can commit ourselves to preparing for the launch of this important addition to the local media.

As soon as I know a date when we are cleared to start, I shall let you know. In the meantime, please keep an eye on www.gatewayfm.com for further news.

Today’s Ofcom announcement of the award stated, “Gateway FM is a not for profit social enterprise. Its mission is to enhance community cohesion through developing a community radio station to reach, involve and serve the communities of Basildon and East Thurrock. The station proposes to present a mixture of output reflecting the range of interests and backgrounds in the target community.”

For further information, please contact Yvonne Williams on 01268 521299.

Let us hope that the radio station adheres to the terms of its license, transmitting broadcasts aimed at Basildon and Thurrock – and refrains from promoting the dubious statements of Bob Spink MP, whom they undoubtedly think played a large part in obtaining their license in return for their biased presentation of his views.

Confine yourself to your licensed area, Gateway FM, and stay-out of Castle Point politics, which you obviously haven’t taken the time or trouble to research…

… (25/02/2010) – GATEWAY FM may be relieved to find that their ‘sponsor’ seems to be considering other ways of getting his message across to FM listeners during the local election campaign. Perhaps in his first move to gain the airtime he needs, and persuade other local broadcasters that it is in their interests to provide him with a platform, Bob used another of those EDMs to propose an ammendment to EDM842, laid down by Paul Burstow on 09 February.

Paul Burstow’s motion reads: ‘That this House is concerned that the future of local analogue-based radio stations is being jeopardised by the absence of a clear Government strategy and confusion over what happens when digital switchover is complete; believes that popular local radio stations like Radio Jackie in south west London provide a valuable service which would be threatened by larger regional stations which will not provide radio services with a local focus; and calls on the Government to develop an alternative to digital switchover which allows local radio stations to continue broadcasting on the analogue spectrum.’

And Bob’s ammendment, made the following day, reads: ‘after `London’, insert `and Southend Radio in Essex’.’

Now why would the MP for Castle Point do that?..

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12 Responses

  1. Oh dear, did they kick you off a phone-in, or something?

    I’d be impressed if you had a copy of their licence, even more so a copy that said “block the signal when you get to Sadler’s Farm”.

    Free speech for some but not for others is what you’re in effect advocating. Highly ironic.

    Congratulations to Gateway. If you’re getting involved in local issues so much the better.

    • No, ‘Barrie’, this has nothing to do with ‘free speech.’ It has everything to do with the type of state-funded, political propoganda that is directly opposed to Democracy.

      Gateway FM, under its license, has an obligation to present the truth to its listeners. Something that they blatently failed to do when providing Bob Spink with a solitary platform for his odious spin.

      And you actually make my case for me.

      There was no ‘phone-in.’

      Castle Point listeners were not given the opportunity of questioning Spink.

      But you are right, the written questions I emailed to Gatway FM on the public’s behalf were not put, and the public interest was not pursued. And neither did I receive any communication back from the station indicating why.

      Give Bob my love the next time you see him…

  2. Gateway Fm should hang their heads in shame over the so called Spink “interview” which was nothing more than a scripted piece aimed at promoting Spink as the “hard working” MP that this blog has shown he is most definitely not. And their Spink spun pieces written directly from that odious man’s political machine and placed on their website were an afront to proper journalism.

    Gateway FM made no attempt at providing a balanced broadcast which the are legally obliged to do, neither did they do any background research on Spink or Castle Point politics.

    The station is an absolute disgrace to those other community broadcasters who serve the communities they represent.

    I sure as hell wont be tuning in in the future!

  3. what utter crap from this web site which never gives balanced views on anything to do with bob s
    i live in Basildon and this station is far from a disgrace
    the big point here is the wonderful work it does with Disabled people and children
    but the good points never get mentioned do they?
    never really balanced on here is it

  4. will be interesting to see if my comments get on here

  5. and as for the bob s interview i think i heard other
    cllrs on there form castle point too

  6. to be honest i cant understand why they brought in a castle point mp either
    why bother with canvey people

  7. “Now why would the MP for Castle Point do that?..”

    So he can assault both our ears Ted.

    lets see if “Southend radio” gives him such an easy ride……………………………….

    Hello, Dean.

    Now bugger off!

  8. cynical observer who hides behind a name
    up yours

  9. I’m sure I heard lots of MPs being interviewed on Gateway FM, including Angela Smith MP. They seemed quite fair and balanced to me.

    As for the thought that the station is not for Canvey people, I could hear the station as far away as Southend and Tilbury – seems to me like they should cover all issues covering all their broadcast area.

    As for Southend Radio, its no longer very local – it’s been bought up by some other company. Listen to the output of Chelmsford and you’ll notice it’s exactly the same as Southend most of the time. I think Gateway is the only actual independent local station apart from Phoenix in Brentwood.

    • I have only ever listened to Gateway FM’s ‘interview’ with Spink, Mark.

      I’m not criticising the station’s other output; but I am criticising their providing an unopposed political platform to a controversial MP and totally ignoring their journalistic responsibility to pursue the public interest.

      To be fair, I did point-out, in my email to them, that Spink was a litigious so-and-so – and I was not too concerned that my questions, regarding his office expenses and legal claims, were not put. But I was very concerned when the interviewer did not challenge the MP on any of his claims.

      It is evident that the station had not bothered to research Spink in any way, and was in no position to conduct an interview of any kind. Furthermore, no balance was provided in the form of an interactive phone-in – a procedure that is widely adopted by all responsible broadcasters when conducting interviews with VIPs.

      Radio interviewers represent listeners – not their interviewees.

  10. what ever ted
    your just a sad looney from canvey

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