Ellenbrook radio to reach wider Perth area

Bill Hultink (seated) and Stephen Hunter, John Greenwood and Ron Freestone celebrate the start of Valley Comes Alive.  Picture: David Baylis        www.communitypix.com.au   d446950
Ellenbrook radio to reach wider Perth area
Bill Hultink (seated) and Stephen Hunter, John Greenwood and Ron Freestone celebrate the start of Valley Comes Alive. Picture: David Baylis        www.communitypix.com.au d446950

A TRANSMISSION boost and frequency change at Radio Ellenbrook is set to broadcast local content to a far wider audience.

As of Tuesday, Radio Ellenbrook 88FM was turned off and replaced with Valley Comes Alive (VCA) 88.5FM.

The new frequency can be picked up in most parts of the Perth metropolitan area.

The VCA FM committee is calling out for listeners to tune in and tell them how far from Ellenbrook they can hear new station.

It has been a labour of love for the station’s volunteers to get to this point.

To get the upgrade, the VCA FM committee had to save thousands by holding monthly sausage sizzle fundraisers out the front of the local hardware store.

Once it had sold enough sausages, the committee was able to apply to the Australian Communications and Media Authority for a new frequency.

Ellenbrook’s cast was boosted from one watt to 100 watts and may be boosted to 200 watts after another review by ACMA.

The 100-watt upgrade coincided with the not-for-profit radio station’s 10th anniversary.

Radio VCA chairman Ron Freestone, who also presents a country program and ’50s and ’60s music program, said the local station could now expand its horizons.

He said the station’s mission was “to become a truly local, high quality, community radio station encompassing the diversity of the people and their lifestyles in our region”.

“Until now, Ellenbrook FM has been a one-watt narrowcast so it really only went about 10km depending on where you are,” he said.

Mr Freestone said the name change reflected the Swan Valley region and the growing suburbs surrounding it.

He said the station upgrade was a tool to promote the communities and events in the area.

“We are looking for members and people with ideas in the local community who might be interested in having a program,” he said.