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The files below are historical off air recordings from past free radio stations in the Greater Manchester and Cheshire area.

These archives will be added to as time and recordings are available.

Enjoy the memories.


KFM - 94.2MHz / 1017kHz

KFM was a full time station which operated around 1984 and 1985 to the Stockport and South Manchester area promoting alternative music. Initially they operated on 94.2MHz, but by early 1985 heard on 1017kHz medium wave, possibly due to the loss of the FM equipment in DTI raids.  KFM gained one of the early specialist music licenses and started legal programming on Saturday 17th February 1990. Sadly as with many licenses obtained by former pirates and enthusiasts, they were eventually subsumed into larger multinational broadcast networks and their programming formats were diluted.

1984_04_29_sun_kfm_942fm_1139-1226_kevinwebb-gh244.mp3 New Nov 2023 Sunday lunchtime, 29th April 1984 with Kevin Webb. This was received far away near Blackpool and suffers from some crackling, and in places BBC Radio 4 overrides the KFM signal. 65MB
1984_04_29_sun_kfm_942fm_1226-1313_kevinwebb-gh244.mp3 New Nov 2023 This is a continuation of the above Kevin Webb show as received near Blackpool and still suffers from some crackling, and in places BBC Radio 4 overrides the KFM signal. 65MB
1984_08_27_mon_kfm_942fm_2030-2215_janetdixon_chriswilliams-gh102.mp3 New Feb 2024 Some evening programming on Bank Holiday Monday 27th August 1984 with Janet Dixon (and what sounded like her sister in the background) followed at 10pm by Chris Williams. At one point, Small Time Radio was mentioned as signing off at 9pm. As received near Blackpool from 94.2MHz in mono. 146MB
1984_08_28_tue_kfm_942fm_0935-1100_stevesale_davestarr-gh102.mp3 New Feb 2024 The end of the Steve Sale breakfast show on Tuesday 28th August 1984, followed at 10am by Dave Starr.  As received near Blackpool on 94.2MHz in mono. 115MB
1985_01_09_wed_kfm_1017am_1215-1345_davestarr_stevemaltby-gh541.mp3 New Nov 2022 Some midweek lunchtime listening from Dave Starr followed by Steve Maltby. There is a short Ken Dodd interview towards the end. The recording was a bit wobbly as it was recorded from 1017kHz in North Leeds. Interesting that Sunshine Radio from Ludlow can be heard underneath. 84MB
1985_04_08_mon_kfm_1017am_1735-1820_dandruff-gh537.mp3 New Sep 2022 A Bank Holiday Monday show with Dan Druff. Recorded in North Leeds from 1017kHz, showing how strong the signal was at that time. 43MB
1985_04_08_mon_kfm_1017am_1825-1910_dandruff_petefarrel-gh537.mp3 New Sep 2022 Continuing the above Dan Druff show until 7pm and the start of Pete Farrel. Recorded again in North Leeds from 1017kHz. The station is believed to have closed shortly after, due to raids by the authorities. 43MB
1990_02_17_sat_kfm_1049fm_0927-1245_1st_day_charlesturner_stevet_robcharles-gh840.mp3 New Oct 2022 Not quite 'pirate', but here is the first of two, 3 hour sections of programming from the first day that KFM became legal. The recording starts just before 0930 with an old KFM programme from 1984 and then at 10am, the station commences broadcasts with Charles Turner and Steve T until mid-day when Rob Charles takes over. Recorded near Blackpool from 104.9MHz in mono, which was on the extreme edge of KFM's coverage, so sadly it is a bit crackly. 270MB
1990_02_17_sat_kfm_1049fm_1300-1615_1st_day_robcharles-gh840.mp3 New Oct 2022 Another three hours from the first official day continuing into the afternoon with Rob Charles.  There are some outside broadcast links with listeners as they celebrate the start of the new station. Again recorded near Blackpool from 104.9MHz in mono. 270MB


LUV NRG - 99.7MHz

Luv NRG was a full time operation in Manchester during the mid-1990s.

1996_02_19_mon_luv_nrg_997fms_1345-1445-gh.mp3 New Jan 2023 Monday afternoon programming. Recorded in Manchester from 99.7MHz in stereo. 139MB


OUTLOOK 96.3 - 96.3MHz

Outlook 963 was an FM station which broadcast religious programming to North West England on 96.3MHz during 1988.  According to announcments, they broadcast from the Irish Republic with 25kW of power, but judging by the signal coverage, the transmitter was more likely to have been in the South Manchester area.  An address was given out in Holmes Chapel, Cheshire.  Transmissions were usually on a Sunday night from around 8pm.  At one time there was also a sister station broadcasting on 96.8MHz to the Stoke area.

1988_04_03_sun_outlook963_963fm_2000-2005_signon-gh658.mp3 New Jan 2024 Interval signal and announcements along with the sign-on at 8pm from Sunday 3rd April 1988. Recorded near Blackpool from 96.3MHz in mono. 8MB



Premier Radio was a heard across the North West area during 1994 with nice audio quality. They were believed to have transmitted from high ground somewhere South of Manchester and quite often covered an area from North Lancashire, to North Wales and down to Stoke-on-Trent.  The same deejays were heard in later months, operating as Carousel Radio.

1994_06_26_sun_premier_1053fm_1828-2000_leekavanagh-ghe619.mp3 New Sep 2023 This recording starts around 6:30pm with a presenter of whom we are not sure of until 7pm when Lee Kavanagh takes over. Recorded near Blackpool from 105.3MHz in mono with a few fades and co-channel interference. 130MB
1994_07_10_sun_premier_radio_1053fm_2007-2239_leekavanagh_timprince-gh716.mp3 New Feb 2022 Sunday evening with Lee Kavanagh until 10pm, then Tim Prince follows with plenty of rock music. Recorded near Blackpool from 105.3MHz in mono. 209MB
1994_07_10_sun_premier_radio_1053fm_2239-2400signoff_timprince-gh716.mp3 New Jul 2022 Continuing the above Tim Prince show until closedown at midnight. Recorded again near Blackpool from 105.3MHz in mono. 118MB
1994_09_11_sun_carousel_1053fm_1950-2100_leekavanagh-gh599.mp3 New Jun 2023 This was presumably the same station as Premier Radio under a different name, and here is Lee Kavanagh on we think Sunday 11th September 1994 (there was not date on the tape). This is the final part of his show before handing over to Tim Prince. Recorded near Blackpool from 105.3MHz in mono. 98MB
1994_09_11_sun_carousel_1053fm_2100-2400signoff_timprince-gh599.mp3 New Jun 2023 Continuing the above broadcast from 9pm with three hours of Tim Prince and his rock show up until closdown at midnight. Amongst others, a phone call was taken from a station called HOT 100 in Wales. There was continous music after closedown. Recorded near Blackpool from 105.3MHz in mono. 250MB
1995_09_17_sun_carousel_1058fm_1925-2055_leekavanagh-ghe614.mp3 New Sep 2023 Lee Kavanagh on which was possibly a return to the air for the station after 8 months. Recorded near Blackpool from 105.8MHz in mono. 130MB
1995_09_17_sun_carousel_1058fm_2055-2220_leekavanagh_timprince-ghe615.mp3 New Sep 2023 Continuing the above Lee Kavanagh show until 10pm. Tim Prince takes over with rock music at 10pm. but only gets twenty minutes into his show before the transmitter cuts off. Recorded near Blackpool from 105.8MHz in mono. 117MB


RADIO RAG - 225m (1331kHz / 1332kHz) / 100.5MHz /103.0MHz

Radio Rag had operated since the 1970s and appeared during the annual University Rag charity week every February. They were heard in the 1970's on 225m medium wave, on shortwave and in the 1980s and later on FM, using 103.0MHz and 100.5MHz amongst others, in different years.  The MW signal travelled far and wide at night, and the FM could be heard at times across the North West.

1991_02_13_wed_rag_1005fm_2300-signoff_nicksummers_arthurdent_airchecks-gh646.mp3 New Nov 2023 These are some airchecks up to signoff from Wednesday 13th February 1991 as received on 100.5MHz, and feature Nick Summers and Arthur Dent.  Unfortunately the recording is quite poor, as the signal was weak and very noisy due to it being received near Blackpool about 50 miles away from the tx site.  Mention is made on the show of broadcasting from a 'secret watery location in Salford'. 106MB

A letter received from Radio Rag, post 1978 frequency change from 1331kHz to 1332kHz,
and mentioning shortwave and FM for that year.
(Click images for a larger version - Size is 4.2MB)


STING FM - 103.6MHz

Sting FM operated in Manchester during the mid 1990s.

1996_02_02_fri_sting_1036fm_0945-1045-gh.mp3 New Jan 2023 Some Friday morning programming fro Sting FM. Recorded in the centre of Manchester from 103.6MHz in mono.  The audio quality was a bit poor at this time. 83MB


WBLS - 102.4MHz

WBLS broadcast to Manchester but were heard during 1988 with at times a strong signal across the North West.

1988_07_15_fri_wbls_1024fm_1150-1505_ladys_thebaron-gh663.mp3 New Sep 2022 Three hours of Lady S on a Friday lunchtime, followed at 1pm by The Baron. Recorded near Blackpool on 102.4MHz in mono. 270MB
1988_07_15_fri_wbls_1024fm_1615-1930_franklinjames_countdracula-gh663.mp3 New Sep 2022 Another three hours from the same day as above, this time later in the afternoon with Franklin James, followed by Count Dracula at 7pm. Recorded near Blackpool from 102.4MHz in mono. 270MB


Additional recordings from Manchester and a huge amount of material from other areas of the UK can be found at The Pirate Archive web site.