Thameside Radio

Coordinates: 51°31′25″N 0°12′19″W / 51.5237°N 0.2054°W / 51.5237; -0.2054
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Thameside Radio was an unlicensed radio station based in London. It launched in the winter of 1977,[1] offering "very slick pop rock with competitions", according to Time Out.[2] According to the Richmond and Twickenham Times, it broadcast from "a certain Notting Hill tower block" –[3] a reference to Trellick Tower.[4]

The station received 30-40 letters each week[5] and had an estimated listenership of around 20,000.[3] It pioneered new music, and is noted by the New Musical Express for giving airplay to "Win a Night Out with a Well-Known Paranoiac" by Barry Andrews, which was subsequently picked up by BBC Radio 1.[6]

Increasing numbers of raids resulted in the station losing five transmitters in six months[7] and the station ceased live transmission, instead taping its shows shortly before broadcast.[7]

Recordings of a number of Thameside Radio shows are held by the British Library.[8] Many shows are available for download from and

In late 1984, Thameside set up the first London unlicensed TV station for a one-off event.[9]


  1. ^ "The Thameside Radio Story: Early Days".
  2. ^ "Free as the Air". Time Out (449). 23 March 1979.
  3. ^ a b Welch, Frances (28 November 1981). "Secret superbeam – Pirate radio defies Post Office". Richmond and Twickenham Times.
  4. ^ "The Thameside Radio Story: Technology".
  5. ^ Sounds, "Touch That Dial", 15 January 1983
  6. ^ "NME: Barry Andrews".
  7. ^ a b "Static Crackle and Pop". Time Out (606). 2 April 1982.
  8. ^ "Thameside Radio", Sound and Moving Image Catalogue, British Library, retrieved 17 July 2012
  9. ^ "The Thameside Radio Story: Endings". Retrieved 1 February 2021.

See also[edit]

51°31′25″N 0°12′19″W / 51.5237°N 0.2054°W / 51.5237; -0.2054