Listeners' Memories

Article Index

part 3
I have already mentioned so far some of the early history of the station, German listeners on both sides of the Iron Curtain without hardly mentioning the various newsletters I have received from the station over the years like FRS News and FRS Goes DX which were great at the time before the internet as a source of free and international radio news hard to find elsewhere. I do recall that the newsletters were by subscription and for a short period of time I helped the station by setting up a bank account here for British members to send in sterling cheques to cover subscriptions for a year at a time. The newsletters also gave a history of what was happening on the station with several DJs coming and going with a wide variety of name Fred van Es and , Frankie Fanatic was well as the engineer Bobby Speed if I recall correctly. The newsletters also introduce the listeners to the merchandise which was available from the station and I always regret the first T-shirt I received had a post office staple right through it as it had a map of Europe on it. The station was the first I recall to produce a documentary on cassette followed by the complete history of the first ten years on CD or cassette and later on From Pro7 to MD also on CD.
It would be impossible to leave the contribution incomplete at this stage without mentioning the most important part of the station is the production and transmission of the shows.   Already has been mentioned the transmitter side of the station but not where the station has been heard as I recall as far away as Argentina and also New Zealand. As they say short wave can go a long way on a long wire with just a low power but much of this has to do with the propagational conditions as anything. The station has had many ups and downs over the years receptionwise which is not due to transmission problems or human error but due to Sunspot cycles. Obviously with poor sunspot numbers reception doesn't travel too far and the same can be said with high numbers as there tends to be dead zone of several hundreds of kilometers around the transmitter site so it takes great planning and luck to get the show out to so many people scattered around Europe and beyond. Lastly one mustn't forget about production and a big thank you goes out to Peter and the late Joop Ter Zee for those wonderful jingles produced over the years. The one that still sticks in my mind is that "This is the Free Radio Service....Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall, FRS beats them all."A big thank you to all the presenters over the years from The Netherlands, Germany , England and US for such wonderful shows like FRS Goes DX which never want to miss. I also very much like to hear the mailbag show even due to the vast number of letters almost to 100 being split into two parts. There has been so many positive things which have happened to FRS-Holland over the past thirty years which are unlikely ever to be repeated but maybe as I started off with this contribution we all need to welcome the new technology out there and use the internet more. I strongly suspect that the station will hold its own again soon once the website is up and running and regular e-mail newsletters are sent out. Sadly gone has the day of letter writing by post as we are all very guilty of either using e-mail or texting. Well done FRS_Holland its been great knowing you for the past thirty years+ and you have been a part of my life too, not just on a Sunday morning but when ever your've been able to transmit even on a Saturday night via Mystery Radio. However FRS-Holland is no mystery its a way of life for a chosen few who have gained so much enjoyment, friendship and pleasure over the years.

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FRS on YouTube

FRS-Holland on Sunday June 19th 2011 (evening broadcast) on 7685 kHz {youtube}9n-UI8ERJZM{/youtube}.
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