Radioactive 95.5 fm - Ireland
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History - Radio is our Bomb (DIY Handbook) - Credits

This page is dedicated to the 300 volunteers who worked on Radioactive betwen the 12th of July 1992 and the 12 of July 1996. Without their actions the last four years would not have been possible, to name them all is nearly impossible but we will try to in the credits at the end. Radioactive gave Dublin a station which will go down in Radio history. The fact that the station never had a format or managment stayed right through to the end. Radioactive was democraticaly run by the Volunteers who took part, and in its four years only two members were asked to leave. The station never had a normal approach to running a radio service, and this to some extent worked, it had a policy of no advertising and all funds were raised by membership subscriptions and benefit concerts. This meant that the equipment that the station operated with was constantly in need of repair and the transmitters never gave blanket stereo coverage to Dublin.

To me Radioactive was an experiment in Free Radio, and in many ways it succeeded and equally in many ways it failed, but most of all we had a good time and many great laughs. At present there is a new collective creating a new station and they are considering other forms of media such as the internet as well as broadcasting, I wish them luck and hope they have as many good times as we did in Radioactive
Keep Fighting for Free Radio

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Radioactive - The Early Days

Radioactive was set up in July 1992 from a bedroom of a flat in Dublin's north inner city. The station started with a limited studio and a transmitter with a power of 20 watts, into a homemade half wave dipole erected on the fire escape.

A test broadcast lasted from 3pm till 12 midnight playing alternative music. With the usual no station identification, reports were already going around the Dublin radio scene that a new station was on, and doing something different, and we hadn't even said anything yet !! Over the next few days we started to talk, identifying the station as Radioactive, and announcing that it was interested in hearing from individuals and groups who had something to say and needed the airspace. There was still only two members and our first post to the mailing address was from prisoners in Mountjoy, who had lists of requests and liked "all the smokin' music".

The hours of broadcast were already 6 to 12 which wasn't bad for two DJs and a loop tape machine seven days a week. Soon letters from interested DJs and political groups started to come in and by the end of July, there were about 10 DJs.

At the start of August, the new studio was in use with two seperate record decks, two tape decks and a microphone. The next two months were probably the most exciting time in 1992. In two months about 25 DJs joined the station and the energy was electric. Thirty individuals who had never been on radio before talking and playing their music seven days a week all over the city.

The station ran smoothly up to Christmas. A new studio was obtained and a party was held to celebrate. It was a great success and plenty of free pints given away. In the new year, the station saw the newly formed government as a threat to the future even though the Minister of Broadcasting, Michael D Higgins was seen to be a liberal lefty.

Raid procedures were set up and distributed to all DJs. It was a good security practice, but we were never raided. The new year also saw the setting up of monthly meetings. Attendance was good and meetings not only covered station organisation but also station policy and new ideas, particularly concerning raising money. Benefits became a new feature to the station with loads of bands offering their services. This was an important source of finance particularly since the station has a policy of deliberately not advertising commercial products or commercial events. It was also a good way of offering the community affordable nights out and at the same time recruiting new DJs.

Around February the local and national press began writing about the station in a "positive" light. It culminated in a two page interview in Hot Press which boosted the morale of everyone involved in the station.

By July 1993, the station was running at full strength with a new 100 watt transmitter and the broadcast schedule 5 pm to 3 am seven days a week gave room for 50 DJs (to our knowledge, there was no other free radio station this big in Europe).

On the 12th of July, a hoax raid occurred, to our knowledge, this was the real thing, so the transmitter was thrown out the window four floors down but amazingly, the transmitter survived the fall and we were back on air within a few hours when we had calmed down.

The Gardai did call once inquiring about a radio station operating in the building. Although it was a flying visit, it was enough to keep us on our toes and the transmitter took another flying visit into next doors garden. Helped by Dublin Corporation, who condemned the building as a fire hazard, it became clear that Radioactive was in need of a new home. Fortunately, a suitable premises was found, transmission power has decreased and the signal distance has lowered but we can be heard all over Dublin city centre.

We now use a 100 watt transmitter loading into a folded dipole antenna, which is errected vertically. It has three dB gain which gives an ERP (effective radiated power) of 300 watts which gives us a broadcast radius of about ten miles but with a few pockets of bad reception because the antenna is only ten meters off the ground. The signal is also in mono because the stereo signal increases our bandwidth but decreases our signal distance.

Our studio is fairly common of Dublin pirates, a ten channel mixing desk with a sub mixer to handle four extra mics for interviews. We have two turntables for the techno djs and two cd players for the rock djs, we also have two cassette decks one capable of recording shows. And a FM tuner to monitor the output.

Running a station like Radioactive can be sometimes crazy and on the edge. Sometimes we take it for granted, until you visit another city and switch on the radio and hear fuck all freedom and shit music. It gives inspiration and reminds us of the importance of Radioactive in the fight for free speech and freedom of information in Dublin.

Radioactive is not a political movement like other left wing and anarchist groups. We don't have any manifestos of policies. Just ordinary people saying what they want and feel. We do have anarchists, socialists, feminists, gay groups and environmentalists and many more head cases who talk about their views and news. Most DJs just want to play their music - political statement in itself.

That's the story so far! We all look forward to more years of free radio in Dublin and we invite you, the public to join the Radioactive Collective and keep radio free for Dublin.

Keep fighting for free radio Radioactive Collective - Dublin, Ireland

Taking the Hiss out of Radioactive

This article was prepared in the interests of people who are having problems receiving the services of Radioactive 95.5 fm. As you may already know we broadcast without a license and any form of revenue such as advertising, so all the money that runs Radioactive is raised at benefits and the subs of it thirty members.

Wish to Thank all the following bands,
who have donated their time to play benefit gigs for
Wormhole / The Rejected band / Stomach / Luggage / Tension / Pet Lamb / Venus Envy / Female Hercules / Here Be Monsters / Stricknien D.C. / Octopuss Underground / Ultra Montanes / Sunbear / Jubilee / Skinflints / Bunny Hoover / Payote / Wolverhampton Pup / Groundswell / Crossbreed / Swagger / Clay Pigeon / The Ferremones / Daughters of the Swan / Motherfudge / The Knocking Shop

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    Last updated 19th November 1995

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    Credits Donal Pauline Crossphader Liz Dr.Groove Kevin Shane Paul Emmitt Jason Johnaton Balaz Eoin Johnny Sin Mark Dj Spliff Mark Conor Irish TD Terrorist Ado Maggs Brian Hanley Egg Robin U Blind Mc la Blanc Rossers Finbar Big Tom Justin Coyle Justin (Freakout) Carissa Macker Deco Animal +Crazy Harry The Molowobolies Mick O'Brien Gareth Mullen Diarmud Colin Colm Halpin Jack Kamakazee Queer Big Al Conor Kostic Bobby Gibbson Dave Sherry Wurzel Sheamus Biggley Dj Analogue Antony LoLo Melody Facthna Red Eye Stevo Bovine Evening Herald Dermot Clair Mozey Dugg Merro Daragh DJ Same Dj New Tape Karl Eunan Sioda Donna Lee The Hill st Kids Ben Walsh Dj Middle Class Jethro Caz Andy Richie Con Carroll Aidan Walsh andrew Aileen Necromancer Colm Maria Declan Ford Columbia Magenta Leagues Spiff Johnaton Dee Lee David Hall Steve Keogh(RIP) Molly Liam D Ferguson Gary Peter Bernie Donal Dervla Jim (RIP) Conzo Angus Richard + the members of the SWP - Militant Labour -The workers solidarity movement- Anarchists Special Thanks to Pete Reed (Dublins Pirate Guru) Veronica Fm For all the transmitters Gary Cruze From Sunset for fixing them Radio Caroline for helping out and Liam Fay for The Deadly Article in the Hot Press For all Those Not Mentioned in the the Credits Sorry for the omition Send all Corrections to good bye good luck good listening FFFR