Magpie presenter bids for tot radio

18th April 1997 at 01:00
Campaigners for children's radio want to use an ex-BBC waveband to broadcast to tots and teenagers, Linda Blackburne writes. This is being seen as their last chance to get a national frequency.

Susan Stranks, a former presenter of the children's TV programme Magpie in the 1970s, is seeking Pounds 44 million from the National Lottery, commercial partners and family trusts to fund children's radio on the spare 225 kHz frequency.

But Miss Stranks and her supporters, who founded Children 2000 in 1995 to focus lottery profits on children, are competing against rivals with interests in sport, news, music or talk radio stations.

"Listening is regarded as crucial for the development of concentration, imagination and communication and recent studies indicate that serious attention disorders can develop from poor auditory skills," she said. "One in five of Britain's pre-school children suffers speech delay."

Children's BBC now only amounts to half-an-hour on Sunday evenings and last month saw the final daytime broadcast by school radio. Miss Stranks said: "In nearly 50 BBC and 180 independent radio stations, nothing is earmarked for children, who are simply left hostage to whichever chief executives happen into power."

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today