Search

Dozens of raids against pirate radio stations in Islington and Hackney

14:27 09 November 2012

Leo Chapman has struggled to tune in to BBC Radio Three due to pirate radio interference. Picture: Dieter Perry

Leo Chapman has struggled to tune in to BBC Radio Three due to pirate radio interference. Picture: Dieter Perry

Dieter Perry

Dozens of raids against pirate radio broadcasters have been mounted in Islington and Hackney this year – but they have not stopped one frustrated listener from hearing pumping bass when he tries to tune into a classical station.

Squads from government watchdog The Office of Communications (Ofcom) – known as spectrum enforcement teams – have swooped on illegal stations 49 times since January.

Many are repeat offenders that have faced action time and again, including one known as Passion FM that has been targeted four times when transmitting from sites in the EC1 and N1 postcodes.

Ofcom said there were 40 raids in Islington, against 12 different stations, and nine operations in Hackney.

The figures were obtained by the Gazette following the trials of a reader who struggled to tune in to classical station BBC Radio Three.

Leo Chapman, of Dufferin Street, Finsbury, said: “I have been unable to get Radio Three for two weeks – all I get instead is beat music. It’s mindless bang bang music with hysterical DJs shouting away and that’s not quite my sort of thing.

“It’s happened before, but usually it closes down pretty fast.”

The chief suspect is Passion FM once again, although Mr Chapman said the problem finally cleared up over the weekend, without any further Ofcom raid.

A spokesman for Ofcom said: “Passion FM sounds likely. We have taken action against it over the past year in that area.

“They broadcast at around 91.8 FM, which is within the Radio Three frequency.

“We can’t say for definite that it’s this particular station, although it has covered that area. There have been quite a few operations against Passion, most recently in August, and it’s a station that we are aware of and are keeping a close eye on.”

The offence of illegal broadcasting carries maximum penalties of an unlimited fine and up to two years in prison.

n You can call Ofcom on 020 7981 3000 to report pirate radio activity.

0 comments

Latest Islington News Stories

Yesterday, 17:47
Michael Otshudi was sentenced to 18 months

Two men have been jailed over the shooting of a good Samaritan who was trying to break up a brawl at a wake – but police believe the gunman is still at large nine months on.

Yesterday, 13:31
Mehmet Ozer celebrates his £303,465.20 EuroMillions win at his workshop in Caledonian Road, Islington. Picture: Ady Kerry/Camelot

A lucky upholsterer has a foot on the housing ladder after decades of renting – thanks to a £300,000 EuroMillions win.

Yesterday, 10:43
Cllr Claudia Webbe with the solar panel array at Islington's Reuse and Recycling Centre. Picture: Islington Council

Islington Council expects electricity savings of £1.5 million over the next 30 years, after installing more than 1,800 solar panels on three of its buildings.

Yesterday, 09:41
Flowers at the scene of the crash where Lewis Johnson, 18, died on Tuesday (Picture: Ken Mears)

Tributes have continued to pour in for 18-year-old Lewis “lighty Lew” Johnson, who died on Tuesday after his motor scooter collided with a van following a police chase.

Thu, 18:16
Dangerous: The junction of Pentonville Road and Islington High Street (Picture: Google StreetView)

Campaigners say “urgent” action must be taken over a deadly Islington junction after figures ranked it in the top 10 most dangerous for London’s pedestrians.

Thu, 14:00
Feeding pigeons in the Palmer Estate could lead to eviction, the letter said. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA WIRE

Heavy-handed town hall officials made a bizarre threat to evict council tenants because they had been feeding pigeons.

Thu, 12:53
This Girl Can Islington launched in Sobell Leisure Centre last week

A “genuinely affordable” campaign has been launched to break down barriers women and girls face in getting exercise.

Thu, 12:23
Pentonville Prison (Picture: PA Wire)

One of Britain’s longest-serving murderers is the only man to have escaped from Pentonville prison in the last five years, a Gazette investigation has revealed.

Most read news

Competitions

Champagne experience

This Valentine’s Day, the Coca-Cola London Eye is the perfect destination for lovebirds, offering a range of romantic experiences from Friday 12th February - Sunday 14th February 2016.

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Islington Gazette
e-edition today

Subscribe