Internal blog post
Operations Manager Update #7

Hi Everyone,

Happy Easter! Please do enjoy yourselves and the sun over the break. Particularly, if you are taking some time out or, just relaxing in and around the area. With the weather earmarked to be over 20C until mid-next week, it is a great time to partake in all the local events, chat to people about community stories and see what is happening in St Albans and surrounds.

Speaking of getting out and about, we have an all-volunteer celebration planned for early-mid June. As we finalise dates and the venue, I will send you an update. A lot of you have been asking for a social gathering and this one will be a great way to get as many of us together as possible - all 100 in one room, imagine!

If you find yourself with a spare hour or so, we will be providing replays of the webinars on Traffic & Travel and the How-to-Guide for the Radio Verulam Website we did this week. These will be great online resources for both presenters and production teams and I highly recommend you familiarise yourself with this content if haven’t already.

Recruitment for volunteer roles. We are still recruiting for Engineering team members. If you would like to get involved or know someone who can develop software, look after network and infrastructure or has station maintenance experience – tell them to apply through our website. Any questions about volunteer engineering roles can be directed to Lawrence Card. On the volunteer manager front, I’ve interviewed a few people and will have an update for you all in the next couple of weeks. Thanks to Ren, Dave Neal, Nik Fox and the team at Communities 1st for helping with the external recruitment – from radio ads to social media campaigns, to jobs ads in a dozen media sites – it’s been great branding for Radio Verulam.

New volunteers. I’ve got a handful of people left to meet and then, it’s onto training, finalising the production teams and looking at how we get out into the community to start producing more local content.

– Volunteering at events. Herts County Show is around the corner (Saturday, May 25), and there are volunteer opportunities to get involved in presenting, tech ops, reporting, editing and being a brand ambassador for the station. Please log into RV Inside and head to the Operations tab >> Events & OBs calendar. You can register your name and it is an excellent way to get involved with one of our 14 events we are committed to this calendar year. Clive will also be listing roles for The Sustainability Festival in May and St Albans Street Festival in June. As we are nearing summer, the events calendar will be getting busy, so please do let us know if you’d like to be a part. Helping out at external Radio Verulam events is a brilliant way to increase your skills, meet other volunteers (there are 100 of us now) and meet our local listeners.

Interviews. Big thanks to the Good Morning St Albans team and Verulam in the Morning crew for sharing with me how they manage their guest bookings and interviews. We are in the process of increasing our local interviews, stories and features across our daytime programming. The next steps will be putting a central system in place for these presenters and producers to start managing interview ideas, guest bookings, creating audio features and really boosting our local broadcasting and social media content.

Shout Outs. There are SO many this week. Massive thanks and congrats to:

Days of Our Lives: Since January this year, Pat Newland has been working on the current series of Days of Our Lives, a series devoted to the lives of Baby Boomers. It encompasses everything from keeping fit to being safe and what hairstyles suit best! Pat has done everything from sourcing the guests, creating the interviews, doing ALL the pre- and post- production AND being an active part of the interview process – including cycling in a spin class. Huge congratulations to you Pat, it is fantastic to see how this series took shape. Tune in on Tuesdays at 7pm (while Ed takes a break from the new music show, you can still hear him on St Albans Drive – Fridays from 4pm).

Local Life: If you haven’t already, tune into Rob Pearman’s series, Local Life on Wednesday at 7.15pm or Sunday at 9.15am. Like Pat, Rob has been plugging away on a number of different series including, Me & My Job (looking at how Hertfordshire residents got their jobs in the media industry), Nature Notes, Events & Entertainment preview, In Concert, Short Story & Poetry. Rob also does ALL of the programme creation himself – as well as running the Talking Newspapers. Thank you to Rob for the wide coverage of community happenings and events.

Reggae Vibes: Tim Smith and Chantel will be celebrating their 70th episode tonight – wahoo! Well done to you both and look forward to hearing what you have in store for listeners.

Verulam Sports: Intrepid presenter, producer and reporter Tony Rice is heading to the European Rugby Championship semi-final this Saturday. This is great news, Tony. It is amazing to see you grasp as many opportunities as you can to position Verulam Sports front and centre. It’s a brilliant example of how you can take your programme out of the studio and into the wider community we broadcast to.

Solid Gold Music Show and Friday Night Disco: Dereck Staines and Mark Laughlan have been receiving some lovely audience feedback over the last week. Both shows are crafted with a lot of care, thought and passion and it is really fantastic to have the comments coming through over social media and email. Thank you to Dereck and Mark for their floor fillers and continuing to be so enthusiastic about producing their music shows.

Andy Waterfield: Our esteemed programme controller, may have been enjoying a well-earned break over the last couple of weeks, but he still managed to be part of an acclaimed award! Uni of Bedfordshire’s Radio Lab won ‘Best Outreach Project’ in the Student Radio Awards for their work with Luton Sixth Form College, where Andy is a teacher. This is a great accomplishment and amazing news for the students and Andy.

As always, feel free to drop me a line with any feedback or suggestions: leona.fensome@radioverulam.com