Student Radio Association

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Student Radio Association (SRA)
Predecessor National Association of Student Broadcasting (NASB)
Formation January 2002
Type Private company limited by guarantee
Purpose Student Radio
Headquarters 30 Leicester Square, London, WC2H 7LA
  • United Kingdom
65 member stations[1]
Jonty Usborne

The Student Radio Association (SRA) is a representative body which supports and acts on behalf of the UK student radio community, comprising radio stations that are associated with or linked to a place of education.[2] It is a not-for-profit organisation, which exists to encourage and facilitate communication between student stations.


The SRA was formed following the liquidation of the National Association of Student Broadcasting (NASB), which was formed as a limited company on 5 August 1988. NASB, a Private company limited by guarantee, was dissolved in January 2002, although had collapsed as a business in 1991. That year saw the creation of the SRA as a community. In November 2007, the SRA was incorporated as a Private Company Limited by Guarantee. There are 65 member stations of the SRA, which includes student radio stations across the UK. Membership to the SRA is on a yearly basis.[3]

The SRA receives support from a number of industry partners, some which have been associated with the organisation for many years. The Radio Academy provides a registered address for the SRA, as well as free membership for SRA members. Students involved with the SRA automatically become part of the Association of Student Radio Alumni (ASRA) following their graduation, which is a network of people formerly involved in student radio.[4] Other associated organisations include Skillset, which offers employment opportunities in the radio industry, and RadioCentre, which provides speakers at SRA events.[5]

The SRA Officers[edit]

The SRA is run by officers that have various roles within the organisation. The SRA is governed by an elected executive team, with elections held annually and voted by the station managers of member stations. The latest elections took place at the 2015 SRA Conference, with the following individuals elected to office from July 2015:[6]

  • Chairman – Jonty Usborne
  • Membership and Communications Officer – Emma Bradshaw
  • Training and Development Officer – James Kenny
  • Marketing Officer – Charlotte Greer-Read
  • Events Officer – Luke Deverson

Administrative roles within the SRA are chosen by the departing executive team. The SRA also appoints regional officers that provide support for stations in a region of the UK. Candidates for regional officers are elected to the role following a vote by the station managers in their region.[7]

The Student Radio Awards (SRAs)[edit]

The Student Radio Awards (SRAs) is an awards scheme celebrating talent within the UK student radio industry, held annually since 1995 and supported by BBC Radio 1, the ASRA and Global Radio. The awards are announced in a ceremony in November, with past presenters including well-known radio personalities, such as Fearne Cotton, Scott Mills, and Nick Grimshaw. The first awards took place at the University of London Union. Due to the increased popularity of the event, the SRAs moved to The indigO2 in London in 2008. The awards on offer range from Best Newcomer, Best Interview, and Best Live Event, up to the most prestigious, Best Student Station of the Year.[8] The current Awards Chairperson is Stephanie Hirst. Previous chairs have included Huw Stephens, Steve Lamacq, and Jo Whiley.[9]

In 2008, the Kevin Greening Creativity Award was introduced to reward students that had displayed new and innovative radio. The award is named in honour of the Kevin Greening, a former chair of the awards and presenter on Cambridge University Radio. Greening co-hosted The Radio 1 Breakfast Show with Zoë Ball from 1997 to 1998, prior to his death in 2007.[10]

As well as student radio award trophy, winners of the best male and female awards are also given the chance to host a show on BBC Radio 1. In 2012, female winner Hattie Pearson, from Fuse FM, covered an early morning breakfast slot on the station on 29 March 2013.[11] Best male winner Ethan O'Leary, from Spark FM, covered the same show on 1 April 2013.[12] Also in 2012, Abbie McCarthy, from RaW 1251AM, was offered free training from the BBC Academy after winning the Best Newcomer trophy.[9] Many past winners of Student Radio Awards have gone on to become big names within the UK radio industry, most notably Greg James (Winner Best Male 2005), who now works at Radio 1, and Mark Crossley (Winner Best Male 2008), who now works at Absolute Radio.

SRA Conference[edit]

Each year, the SRA holds a conference, usually during the University Easter break. Each year, member stations submit a conference proposal to hold the conference at their university. The SRA committee selects the winning station towards the start of each year. The conference takes place over 3 days and is funded through ticket sales. At the SRA Conference, speakers are invited to speak on a variety of subjects, including the future of Student Radio and radio techniques. Speakers are invited from radio organisations, such as the controller of BBC Radio 1 Ben Cooper.

From 2010, the 'I Love Student Radio' awards have been held at the conference. These are in addition to the SRAs and are dedicated to rewarding the people behind the scenes of student radio. Awards include the best region, which was won in 2013 by the North West region.[13] As well as the awards, the SRA annual general meeting is held at the conference, including the election of the New SRA Executive team.

The locations of the most recent conferences are listed below:

SRA Chart Show[edit]

The SRA runs the National Student Radio Chart Show, which broadcasts live across the UK every Sunday from 3 pm. The show is aired on member stations that have signed up to air the show and is repeated on these stations throughout the week.[17]

The show lasts for 120 minutes, with the chart being split into two top 10 countdowns. During the first hour, the 'Emerging Icons' chart is played, which involved a countdown of the top 10 unsigned tracks that are voted for by fans of the bands. This chart is supported by the Unsigned Band Review website.[18] supported by The second hour of the show counts down the top 10 biggest hits playing on student nights out across the country. This chart is in collaboration with the club night 'Flirt!', from which the chart takes its name.[19]

The chart broadcasts from a different member station each week, with student presenters from that station in charge of the show. The show also allows for presenters to showcase original content and play new music. The show is produced by the SRA.[17] The best chart show from the year is awarded an SRA award, which was won by Xpression FM in 2012.[20]


  1. ^ The Student Radio Association :: Members
  2. ^ Rudin, Richard; Trevor Ibbotson (2002). An introduction to journalism: essential techniques and background knowledge. Focal Press. p. 337. ISBN 978-0-240-51634-9. 
  3. ^ The Student Radio Association :: Membership Info
  4. ^ About Us « ASRA
  5. ^ The Student Radio Association :: Student Radio Supporters
  6. ^ The Student Radio Association :: Officers
  7. ^ The Student Radio Association :: News – SRA AGM 2013 elections results
  8. ^ The Student Radio Awards :: The History of The Student Radio Awards Archived 15 June 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ a b "Free training for best newcomer at Student Radio Awards 2012". BBC Academy. Retrieved 8 November 2015. 
  10. ^ Young, Kevin (31 December 2007). "Mayo tribute to radio DJ Greening". BBC News. 
  11. ^ BBC Radio 1 – Dev, Hattie Pearson sits in for Dev
  12. ^ BBC Radio 1 – Dev, Ethan O'Leary sits in for Dev
  13. ^ I Love Student Radio :: News – I Love Student Radio Award Winners[permanent dead link]
  14. ^ The Student Radio Association – Members from Student Radio Association website. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  15. ^ The Student Radio Association – News from Student Radio Association website, 12 December 2011. Retrieved 14 January 2011.
  16. ^ a b c The Student Radio Association – Conference Archived 6 March 2013 at the Wayback Machine. from Student Radio Association website, 11 November 2012. Retrieved 11 November 2012.
  17. ^ a b The Student Radio Chart :: The National Student Radio Chart Show
  18. ^ the Unsigned Band Review
  19. ^ Flirt! Chart Rundown | Flirt! – The UK's Biggest Student Night
  20. ^ The Student Radio Awards :: Awards 2013

External links[edit]