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'DEMOCRACY FM'! A RADIO FIRST FOR MANCHESTER

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Manchester will host a unique one day 'people-powered' radio station tomorrow as part of the launch of the city's L...
Manchester will host a unique one day 'people-powered' radio station tomorrow as part of the launch of the city's Local Strategic Partnership (LSP).

'Over To You 87.FM' will broadcast live from the Manchester International

Conference Centre to report and comment on the 'Over To You' conference that

will set the strategy for Manchester for the years to come. The station

will be staffed by 'ordinary' Manchester residents who will give their view

on whether the city's movers and shakers have got their strategy right. No

other LSP in the country has used a radio station in this way.

'Over To You 87.9FM' is produced by the Manchester community development

charity Radio Regen who have trained over 20 Manchester residents in all

the skills needed to make live radio. One of the trainees, Nadia Ali,

mother of two from Longsight, is going to be a presenter for Over To You

87.9FM. She said - 'I couldn't believe it when they asked us to come and do

the station but we're really going to be there, having our say about the

sort of stuff that we normally feel shut out of. It's not going to sound

much like the BBC - much more like real people talking about what really

matters to them - and doing it for ourselves too.'

In an innovative move, conference organisers Manchester City Council see

Over To You 87.9 FM as a way of extending the impact of the conference

beyond the confines of the venue. Delegates from all walks of Manchester

life will be put on the air and listeners will be encouraged to phone in

their comments on the proceedings. The station team will also be on the

street in city centre Manchester getting the views of people as the

conference proceeds.

Radio Regen is at the forefront of the new wave of community radio in the

country - working with disadvantaged communities across Manchester and

Salford. The charity's position has been recognised by the granting of two

year-long pilot community radio licences for stations in Wythenshawe and

Longsight that will be launched in March.

Radio Regen's director Phil Korbel said: 'There's never been anything like

Over To You 87.9FM. The council have really opened the door for the people

of Manchester to have their say about the Local Strategic Partnership. It's

my hope that community radio in Manchester can continue to serve the people

in this way - giving them real access to the decision-making processes that

affect their lives.'

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