Cambridge 105

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Cambridge 105
City of license Cambridge
Broadcast area Cambridgeshire: FM
Worldwide: Internet Radio
Slogan Community Radio in your City
Frequency FM: 105 MHz
RDS: Camb_105
First air date 19 July 2010
Language(s) English
Webcast Web Player
Stream URL (MP3 192k)

Cambridge 105 is the community radio station for the city of Cambridge. A volunteer-run, community-owned, not-for-profit organisation. Cambridge 105 provides a broadcast voice for Cambridge, broadcasting live on 105FM, and online, seven days a week.



In 1998, a group of volunteers began Cambridge Café Radio as a community radio station on a license that was eventually purchased by the UKRD Group to become Star Radio.

In March 2004 Karl Hartland and Lucy Clifton began an internet radio station that they called 209radio, named after their address 209 Campkin Road in Cambridge. Karl presented a regular music show called Irreducible Representation whose reputation grew until others offered to contribute or present similar shows. Within a few months there were 20 such shows each week with the station on air during weeknights and weekends, with contributors eventually ranging from members of the homeless community to the elderly and a group of 14-year-old girls.[1]

Realising the continuing potential of a community radio station to the city of Cambridge, they applied for an Ofcom license, and in 2007 were granted an FM broadcast license. The studio was moved from Karl and Lucy's living room to the Citylife offices in Sturton Street and the station went live on 105.0 MHz in October 2007.[1]

Although run entirely by volunteers, over the next two years, the station struggled to raise the £60,000 required to stay on air and eventually in February 2010, despite a strong following around the city, 209radio ceased broadcasting. Rather than return the license to Ofcom, the team voted to transfer the license to a new team keen to continue a community radio station in Cambridge.[2]

First broadcast[edit]

Ofcom approved the licence transfer from 209radio to Cambridge 105 with immediate effect on 19 July 2010. Due to this being a licence transfer, the station was obliged to start broadcasting immediately upon receipt of the licence. Notification was received on the afternoon of Monday 18 July that the transfer would occur the following day. Equipment was set up in the house of station director Axel Minet and on the evening of 19 July, the station debuted with Sammy B-Side spinning some late night hip-hop.

New Studios[edit]

In October 2010, Cambridge 105 secured new premises at the Gwydir Street Enterprise Centre, Cambridge. The property was an old industrial unit that used to be home to a paper binders.

Cambridge 105 sought out volunteers and donations to secure the manpower and resources to start construction of studios. Due to the low budget and limited time allowed alongside volunteers' day jobs, progress with construction was slow. However, by December 2010 the station was broadcasting from the new premises.

In early 2013, the second studio of Cambridge 105 became operational. This new professional studio, dubbed 'Studio B', worked in conjunction with 'Studio A' to provide volunteers with a space to pre-record programmes and bring in guests for pre-recorded interviews.

Broadcasting online[edit]

Cambridge 105 began broadcasting online via their web stream in May 2011. Online streaming is now via the Radioplayer system on their Homepage with TuneIn Radio and Radioplayer apps also available for all major mobile operating systems (Android, iOS, Windows, Blackberry), so people can also listen from their mobile phones and tablet computers.


Cambridge 105 operates a system that separates all of its programming between 'Daytime' and 'Specialist' from Monday to Friday with some exceptions.

  • 'Daytime' programming plays a mixture of music from the 60's to the present day, focussing more from the 80's onwards. It also includes selections from the Cambridge 105 playlist and 'Unsigned Chart' which features local artists and bands generally not aligned with major record companies.
  • 'Specialist' programmes play more eclectic and specialised content.



Cambridge 105 broadcasts from its studios on Gwydir Street, in the city centre of Cambridge.

Construction of the studios began shortly after the premises were acquired in October 2010. The first broadcasts from the site began as early as December whilst building work continued around both live and pre-recorded programming.

The studios were constructed with help from volunteers such as carpentry and joinery students from Cambridge Regional College, who kindly volunteered their time. In return, they got some experience and references that could help find them their first jobs after finishing their courses.[3][4]

Other volunteers came from both within the station and the local community to help with supplying materials and labour. Many of whom also helped us decorate the office area.

Outside broadcasts[edit]

Cambridge 105 broadcasts from various outside events across the year, some of the most notable include:

  • Red Nose Day - The station completed its first outside broadcast with the help of Cambridge Repeater Group on 18 March 2011. Cambridge 105 broadcast live from three separate locations in the centre of the city. The broadcast featured reports on fundraising activities around the city as well as a number of live sets by local bands. A total of £321.03 was raised in aid of Comic Relief.
  • Strawberry Fair 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 & 2015 - Cambridge 105 broadcast live from Midsummer Common for various Strawberry Fairs. The broadcasts featured interviews with stall owners, fair goers and live music from local artists and musicians across the day.
  • Cambridge Rock Festivals in 2011, 2012, 2013 & 2014 - A four-day broadcast from the [1] Rock Festival site, featuring live performances and interviews from acts taking part.
  • Cherry Hinton Festival 2011 - Interviews from the event and local bands performing live.
  • Wish You Were Here Festival 2011 - Live studio performances and interviews from the featured bands plus a four-hour broadcast from the stage at the Portland Arms.
  • Children In Need - 2012, 2013 & 2014 Cambridge 105 took to the streets to raise money for Children In Need. With the help of local musicians the station raised just over £1,700 (2012), just over £2,000 (2013) and just over £2100 (2014).
  • Tour De France 2014 - 7 July 2014. The race started the third stage from Cambridge to London on Parker’s Piece, by Gonville Place, from where the Peloton rode through the historic city centre and on into Cambridgeshire and then Essex. Cambridge 105 broadcast live from 5am from the start line continuously throughout the whole of the day with live reports from several reporters throughout the city and further along the route as far as Saffron Walden. Cambridge 105 provided greater coverage than any other broadcaster serving the Cambridge area and was one of the biggest outside broadcasts the station has carried out.

NMG Sessions - Since 2011, Cambridge has been promoting and supporting local unsigned bands and artists in the Cambridge area through the New Music Generator. NMG sessions are held at the Portland Arms in Cambridge and are either broadcast live or recorded for later broadcast.


The Cambridge 105 schedule is split into daytime output & specialist programming. Daytime programming covers a popular mix of music from the 1960s all the way through to the present day, whilst specialist picks up on a diverse range of genres.

Notable programming[edit]

105 Breakfast[edit]

Neil Whiteside & Linda Ness present 105 Breakfast live from Gwydir Street to get your day off to the best possible start. There’s news, weather, travel and sport plus the best in morning music including your requests.

Try to identify the Cambridge location in Where’s Flossie?

News, Weather and Sport at 7.00, 8.00 and 9.00; News Headlines at 7.30 and 8.30 Travel every 20 minutes from 7.20.

Class of the Week at 7.45.

What’s on preview with Karen Stringer on Monday & Friday at 8:05; The Best of Cambridge 105 Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

105 Sport[edit]

105 Sport is Cambridge 105's live weekly sports show, hosted by Alistair Hunter, Ibrahim Rahman and Jack Swindlehurst. The show broadcasts from 4:00pm until 6:00pm every Saturday. The 105 Sport team covers all sorts of local and national sport in their regular live shows.[5]


The station's weekday daytime output consists of music from the 1960s to the present day with a greater emphasis from the 80s onward and a mix of local topical debate and discussion. Key presenters across the daytime include - Mid-Mornings from 10 – 1pm (Leigh Chambers, Mandy Morton, Phil Rowe & Mike Prior) and afternoons from 1 – 4pm (Leigh Last, Matt Webb, Kelvin Taber & Andy and Christian).

105 Drive[edit]

The current weekday Drivetime show is hosted by Julian Clover. The show broadcasts from 4:00pm until 7:00pm every weekday, with news at the top of every hour, and regular travel updates.

Specialist programming[edit]

Specialist programming covers a diverse range of music genres, including, classical, soul, rock and roll, indie, house, rock, hip hop, dubstep, rhythm and blues, ska and reggae.

Fundraising and the community[edit]

Cambridge 105 raises money in the community through outside broadcasts and broadcast marathons.


  1. ^ a b "The making of 209 radio". Cambridge News. 1 October 2009. 
  2. ^ "209radio". 
  3. ^ "Press Release - CARPENTRY STUDENTS HELP BUILD NEW CAMBRIDGE RADIO STATION" (PDF). Cambridge Regional College. Retrieved 2011-01-12. 
  4. ^ "Video of the day: Carpentry students hone their skills to build radio studios". Cambridge News. Retrieved 2011-01-14. 
  5. ^ "105 Sport". 105 Sport. 26 March 2015. Retrieved 26 March 2015. 

External links[edit]