Ranfurly Radio Burn729

Radio station burns through the years

CHE BAKER

Burn729 logo © Burn729

A celebration will be held in Ranfurly this weekend to mark the 20th year on the airwaves for the area’s sole radio station.

Burn 729AM station manager Quentin McIntosh said reaching the 20th year milestone was huge for the independently owned station.

The station, which plays music from the 1950s to today’s gems, had been able to stay on the air because of local support and loyal advertisers, Mr McIntosh said.

It started in 1991 after a test transmitter was set up in a spare bedroom in the house of founding member and local technician Ewan Mason.

Burn729 studio building, Ranfurly, Maniapoto © Burn729

From then the operation was moved around to numerous places in Ranfurly, including the railway station and in a caravan outside the Lions Club, until a production suite was set up at the Fenton Library.

Mr McIntosh said the station had five volunteer radio announcers who worked to keep the station live on air up to 12 hours a day.

Volunteer Lackie Edwards said being involved in the project was a great way to put back into the community.

To mark the milestone a booklet on the history of the station would be released tomorrow.

The booklet would include memories from the community during the 20 years the station had been on air.

A market day would also be held with musicians and a competition between teams from eight communities in the area would be held to find the area’s “top town”.

Teams had to have a competitor under the age of 16 and over the age of 60 but the events of the competition would be kept top secret until tomorrow, Mr McIntosh said.

© Fairfax NZ News

© Southland Times October 21, 2011.

This material remains © Fairfax New Zealand Limited and is only to be used for non-commercial personal or research use. Any other use requires permission of the copyright holder.

For a current list of all radio stations broadcasting in New Zealand, visit our New Zealand Radio Guide.

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