On a cold February evening in 1985, over a thousand people gathered outside the studios of Radio Jackie. They were defying the authorities who were trying to close them down.Why were so many people so passionate about, what after all was a pirate radio station?
Radio Jackie - A Very English Struggle is a book written by Colin King that details his personal view of a momentous battle to bring Local Radio to South West London and North Surrey. Hilarious situations, larger than life characters and a band of young people utterly determined to succeed against all the odds.
There are moments of 'Milliganesque' lunacy. There are moments of abject despair.But through it all there is humour and determination.
This is the story behind the highly popular Land Based ‘Pirate’ Radio Station bundled with an exclusive new ‘Radio Jackie The CD’ audio disc If you have the book then visit our LISTEN page
Dedicated to Chief Engineer Ernie Stevenson, Records At Sea explains how the British fishing industry was created by the Industrial Revolution and how the industry built and advanced, eventually creating the need for super trawlers of which Ross Revenge was one of the biggest and most successful.
The book then moves on the to the Ross Revenge becoming a radio ship after Britain's capitulation in the 'Cod Wars' virtually destroyed this countries deep water fishing industry. Describing the ships radio years Mike then gives a virtual tour of the Ross and discusses the ideals that keep Caroline on air and the Ross Revenge in our care in 2002. He also looks at the future aims of the organisation. Since Mike was able to persuade the Lottery Commission 'Awards For All' scheme to fund the cost of production, all profits from Records At Sea go to the Society’s efforts to preserve the Ross Revenge.
72 pages. 24 Illustrations. Full colour gloss cover with fine shots of the Ross Revenge.
JOHNNIE WALKER - CRUISIN' THE FORMATS examines the four decades since the pirate stations and traces the Radio 2 DJ's career from a tight US format on Radio England to freeform broadcasts on Caroline. From there he was forced to engage with the highly structured and bureaucratic programming of the BBC. In between he also experienced heady days in San Francisco - and the more mundane world of UK local radio.
Johnnie Walker represents the final national link between the pirates and today's government controlled broadcasting. As he embarks on a new chapter away from a daytime show, this timely study shows how a man of integrity has fought against dull formatted radio created by state interference.
Johnnie Walker - Cruisin' The Formats by Bob Preedy - DIRECT FROM THE AUTHOR £6.99
'Radio Jackie - A Very English Struggle` by Colin King - THE BOOK COMES WITH EXCLUSIVE AUDIO CD £17.99
RECORDS AT SEA by Mike Weston... Every Penny from this book goes to help preserve The Ross Revenge £5.99
When Pirates Ruled the Waves 6th Edition Paperback by Paul Harris £16.95
Intrigues, threats, boarding parties, smuggling, shipwreck, danger and adventure on the high seas - they all form part of the remarkable story of the pop radio pirates. During the 1960’s and 1970’s, they broadcast from storm-lashed radio ships anchored off the coasts of Europe. As the popularity of the stations grew - first in Denmark and Sweden and, later, in Britain, Holland and Belgium competition among them reached cut-throat level. The story is told of how the dramatic events around the Radio City fort in London's Thames Estuary resulted in the shooting to death of its owner; of the rivalry between Holland's Radio Veronica and the psychedelically - painted Radio North Sea International which culminated in the night bombing of the North Sea ship; how Radio Caroline, Capital Radio and Radio Veronica broke free from their stormy anchorages and were driven aground; how Radio North Sea International became the centre of an espionage scandal involving the security services of several NATO countries, and played its part in influencing the 1970 British General Election. Successively, the governments of Denmark, Sweden, Belgium, Britain and The Netherlands legislated against the pirate broadcasters.
Johnnie Walker is an inspiration. One of the best-known and most beloved broadcasters in Britain, the charismatic BBC Radio 2 DJ has achieved legendary status with a hugely loyal following thanks to his tireless pioneering of new music, his warm and passionate personality and his soothing voice.
Having thrown away the rule book as a teenager, Johnnie has always made decisions from the heart. As a result, he has had a brilliantly colourful life, with more ups and downs than a roller coaster ride. He made his name in the 1960`s when he and Radio Caroline, where his night-time show was essential listening for 86% of radio listeners, continued broadcasting in defiance of Government legislation. In 1976 he walked out of Radio 1 because of his outspoken views and his insistence on playing album tracks. He made front page news when he described the Bay City Rollers as 'musical garbage' and when he was caught snorting cocaine.
In his memoir, he reveals all about his time with Radio Caroline, his drug addiction, his fight against cancer and his spiritual awakening. Honest, passionate and humorous, his autobiography will provide inspiring and entertaining listening to his million of fans.
Paperback Size : 129 x 198mm Pages : 416 Publisher : Penguin
Johnnie Walker The Autobiography - Penguin Paperback edition £9.99
The US hardcover edition of the story of the late and much missed Tom Lodge and the earliest days of Radio Caroline. This edition has a hard cover, 242 pages, has been completely revised with many photos
"The Ship that Rocked the World" may have the same title as Tom's original book, but it's been completely revised, and dramatically expanded. More tales about life aboard ship and onshore, more insights into the music, and more stories of Tom, Ronan, the deejays, and the musicians who made those days so special, with a concluding section about how Caroline continues today.”
“Without Caroline, we would not have sold a single record .Tom Lodge was a vital figure in Caroline’s most vital times. As such, he deserves a Knighthood... Sometimes the law is more than an ass. Pirates? They were angels.”
“Radio Caroline was more adventurous than most stations around in its day. It championed bands like the Kinks, who owe much of their early success to Radio Caroline and Tom Lodge.” Ray Davies
Hardcover 242 pages completely revised edition with many photos
“Pirate Radio, and in particular Radio Caroline, was a really exciting part of all our lives in those days, and summed up the spirit of the times culturally and musically.” Sir Paul McCartney
“Radio Caroline gave us our start–my eternal thanks.”
The Ship That Rocked The World - TOM LODGE £18.99 with The late author’s Signed Bookplate
Current stock has an author Signed Bookplate while stocks last
This is a book about how Jack rose from being a student, teacher, bingo caller and then a DJ on the Lightship Comet off the Scottish coast.
Radio Scotland had a short career and while McLaughlin was there before the start, he did not stay to the end, so this is not the definitive history of the station or detailed technical description of the ship.
But the reader will learn a great deal about Jack, sometimes uncomfortably so, as he describes how he consummated his relationship with his new girlfriend and then within minutes, repeated the process with her brother or, when working as a History teacher, he shared a bed with a pupil and the pupils gay lover.
Essentially, this was a time when a young man, prepared to bluff his way along, could soon rise to be a household name and could use his fame to meet people and do things that he never would have considered possible a few months previously.
McLaughlin interviewed the Beatles before this was a really big deal, Met David Bowie when he was a pretentious mime artist and on being told to interview Jimi Hendrix asked ' who is he ? '.
The book ends as he jumps ship in favour of Britain Radio, in hindsight, not a wise career move. But as a snapshot of brief era of complete freedom that burned bright and then was forever extinguished, it is a fine read.
415 pages in paperback Over 50 Photo’s including a very young Tony Allan
‘Pirate Jock - Confessions of a 60’s DJ’ Book by Jack McLaughlin £16.95
Radio Caroline Presenter autobiographies and other fascinating Offshore Radio History books…
LASER 558 All Europe Radio - Hans Knot DIRECT FROM HOLLAND £20.99
Hans Knot brings us another interesting book in an inimitable Dutch spin on English. This time the history of Radio Caroline’s one time neighbour in the North Seas during the Eighties, Laser 558, with a pop play list that drew in big audiences while it lasted.
Caroline later picked up the frequency and for a time some of the commercial style. One for your collection.
Hans writes in his foreword. Just before Radio Caroline restarted we already heard rumours that a new radio ship would appear at the West European Horizon. But it would last until November that year that we saw in the trade publication ‘Radio News’ the first printed message. In their edition from November 4th 1983: ‘A new pirate ship is leaving Fort Lauderdale, Florida, today to anchor alongside Radio Caroline off the British Coast. The station, which will be called Laser 730, is expected to arrive off Kent in two weeks time. Laser 730 is American backed and will feature only American personalities keen to make impression on the European Market. Its music will be CHR – Contemporary Hit Radio – or Top 40 - which has taken the major stateside market by storm. The mast is 354 feet high and Laser 730 hopes to achieve a power of 100 kW.” I hope this book will bring back a lot of memories to you with the happenings of a wonderful radio station from more than 25 years ago, ‘All Europe Radio Laser 558’.
Groningen, Hans Knot, October 2011.
There can be few modern day adventure stories as gripping and romantic as the story of Radio Caroline, a legend in her own time. In 1964 Radio Caroline was the very first shipborne ‘pirate’ radio station broadcasting to listeners in Britain.
Although Radio Caroline continued broadcasting after the British government introduced legislation to silence ‘the pirates’, the floating radio station was seized and impounded in the late ‘60’s. The Caroline ship the MV Mi Amigo lay rusting in a harbour until 1972 when she was sold at auction for conversion into a ‘pirate’ radio museum. By the end of the year ‘The Lady’ as she was affectionately known, was at anchor again off the Dutch cost and a whole new chapter in her broadcasting career had begun.
The author has written here the inside story of everyday life aboard - often stripped of its romantic aura. Drugs, sex, intrigues, hijackings, mutinies and storms at sea all feature in this extraordinary tale.
Eventually in March 1980 the Caroline ship was to sink in a violent storm in the North Sea, but from August 1983 the station rose phoenix like from the ashes and resumed broadcasting from a new ship.
This is a book which will fascinate not only those readers interested in broadcasting and music radio, but all who can enjoy a real life adventure story of drama on the high seas.
Last Of The Pirates - EXTENDED EDITION Bob Noakes DIRECT FROM HOLLAND £18.99
‘WAY BACK HOME’ The Graham Gill Story DIRECT FROM HOLLAND £17.99
Graeme Gilsenan, born April 15th 1936 in Williamstown Australia, the proud son of George Robert Gilsenan and Rhoda Jean Heap. Found his career within the radio industry.
First in Australia and from the mid sixties of last century in Europe. Stations like Radio London, Swinging Radio England, Britain Radio, Radio 390, Radio Caroline, RNI and Radio Netherlands were glad to have him in their presentation team.
Now 74 years of age he reveals his life story in: ‘Way Back Home, The Graham Gill Story’.
176 pages 68 photos
Death of a Pirate: British Radio and the Making of the Information Age
When the pirate operator Oliver Smedley shot and killed his rival Reg Calvert in Smedley 's country cottage on June 21, 1966, it was a turning point for the outlaw radio stations dotting the coastal waters of England. Situated on ships and offshore forts like Shivering Sands, these stations blasted away at the high-minded BBC 's broadcast monopoly with the new beats of the Stones and DJs like Screaming Lord Sutch. For free-market ideologues like Smedley, the pirate stations were entrepreneurial efforts to undermine the growing British welfare state as embodied by the BBC. The worlds of high table and underground collide in this riveting history.
336 Pages paperback edition
‘’DEATH OF A PIRATE’ by Adrian Johns - NEW paperback edition £9.99
Radio Caroline was the world's most famous pirate radio station during its heyday in the 1960’s and 1970’s, but did the thousands of people tuning in realise just what battles went on behind the scenes?
Financed by respected city money men, this is a story of human endeavour and risk, international politics, business success and financial failures. A story of innovation, technical challenges, changing attitudes, unimaginable battles with nature, disasters, frustrations, challenging authority and the promotion of love and peace while, at times, harmony was far from evident behind the scenes. For one person to tell the full Radio Caroline story is impossible, but there are many who have been involved over the years whose memories and experiences bring this modern day adventure story of fighting overwhelming odds to life. Featuring many rare photographs and unpublished interviews with the 'pirates' who were there, Ray Clark, once a Radio Caroline disc jockey himself, tells the captivating story of the boat that rocked!
About the Author Ray Clark who is kindly signing
all copies sold by us for this Caroline 50 offer…
Ray Clark is a current BBC Radio Essex presenter, and has over thirty years' experience as a disc jockey. He broadcast on Radio Caroline in the 1980’s under the name Mick Williams.
Published Cover Price £16.99
SIGNED EDITION £13.99 plus P & P
256pp Paperback with many rare Colour & B/W photos
Published: The History Press Ltd Feb 2014
‘Radio Caroline - The True Story of The Boat That Rocked’ - SIGNED by author Ray Clark £13.99
SIGNED BY THE AUTHOR
‘Ships in Troubled Waters’ RADIO CAROLINE 50th ANNIVERSARY EDITION from Nigel Harris, one of Radio Caroline’s longest serving presenters. Storms, raids, police chases, near drowning and a knife attack. All part of an amazing offshore radio story with some rare photos of it all. Nigel writes:This book tells the story of my journey through boarding school and onto offshore radio in the North Sea. It is a recollection of events from my perception only, which took place during my time on a number of radioships. As you will read, sheer dedication and strength of mind was required by all parties over the years to allow the offshore enterprises to survive. Radio Caroline was the central passion for me, as it was for so many others, and I felt it was never on the cards to give up the fight to survive at sea. Nevertheless, remembering every event, and those people involved, was difficult and I trust I do not upset anybody by telling stories they would rather forget. (No malice is intended by anything written in this tome) A few names have been left out to spare embarrassment, but I hope the narrative remains complete. Memories from my younger days are included, as I would like to think they help complete the overall picture of how I thought and behaved, and what shaped me as I grew up.
Paperback: 232 pages featuring
50 B & W photographs and now in this Radio Caroline 50th Anniversary edition an extra 38 exclusive photos especially of The Mi Amigo
Publisher: My Way Publishing
Dedicated & signed directly from the author
'Ships in Troubled Water' by Radio Caroline's Nigel Harris - Signed by the author £13.99
The story behind the 60`s ‘Pirate’ Radio stations
The British 'pirate' radio stations of the 1960's were not the first, or the last, but they were amongst the most popular and are still fondly remembered today, 40 years later.
Everyone who listened to the offshore stations can remember the personalities, the music, the jingles and the commercials. But behind the scenes there was real life rivalry and conflict between the stations. They were also the catalyst for a major change in British radio and they paved the way for the introduction of land based commercial radio. They started a revolution. This is the story behind that revolution
A superb A4 size 104 page glossy softback book of the original Pirate Radio era of the UK coast including Radio Caroline, Atlanta, ‘Big L’ Radio London, Radio England,Radio 270, 390, Invicta, Radio City, Radio Scotland and more...
THE BEAT FLEET by Mike Leonard... £9.99
WE HAVE A FEW INDIVIDUALLY SIGNED BY AUTHOR
The Last Great Adventure for Boys - Radio Caroline’s Bob Lawrence - Signed by the author £13.99
This very entertaining new book from Radio Caroline’s ‘Buzby’ Bob Lawrence.
As ‘Richard Thompson’ he broadcast on hospital radio and various London land-based pirates before joining Radio Caroline in August 1978 where, on his first day, he was given the nickname ‘Buzby’ by Dutch DJ Marc Jacobs. Richard stayed until the MV Mi Amigo sank in March 1980. As his subsequent radio name Bob Lawrence catch Bob’s ‘Album Collection’ show every Friday on Radio Caroline and also watch him co-host our ‘50 Years On’ Caroline Birthday Bash sessions on our new double DVD
Bob is a painter and decorator in south east London in the late seventies. He loves Charlton Athletic, old war films and listening to Radio Caroline, a pirate radio station in the North Sea. By pure chance, he gets a job decorating the flat of the station's manager, the beautiful Olga. In the right bed at the right time, he is given the opportunity to leave the paint roller behind and pick up the headphones on the pirate ship.
Avoiding arrest is just the beginning, avoiding death is somewhere in the middle and at the end, he faces the ultimate price. Based heavily on the author's real life experiences working on Radio Caroline, this is a tale of love, hate, fear, joy, betrayal, guns, sex, drugs and rock n roll; they all play a part in The Last Great Adventure for Boys.
RRP £14.99 Our price individually signed by the author £13.99
Paperback: 338 pages - The Radio Production Company 21 x 14.8 x 2 cm
Signed by the author, especially for the Radio Caroline Society Web Shop.
All profits go as usual to preserving and restoring Radio Caroline’s ship Ross Revenge.
Bob, pictured above as one of the hosts of the Radio Caroline Birthday Bash on March 8th 2014 at Rochester
A review by Radio Caroline’s Peter Moore.
Years ago, a journalist asked me to explain my fascination for Radio Caroline. I replied that it was the last adventure you can have in Europe. From his title you see that Bob and I were thinking along the same lines. Watching people queuing for the 7.45 train to London, and knowing that they will later retire to bed after an evening in front of the TV, while you are hiding under a pier in a deserted coastal resort, makes the pastime very special. When a foul mouthed but good hearted boat skipper motions you to creep on to a dubious fishing boat to transport you to an alternative universe, the pastime becomes compelling and unique. As DJ Steve Conway often stated ‘ There’s something out there I can’t resist ‘. There is the saying that many a true word is spoken in jest. Similarly while Bob has written a piece of fiction, it is very close to fact in some areas and you may have fun guessing who the actual people are behind the false names. Further, the story covers a real incident when Caroline was off air due to supposed generator failure. It is a time that those who were there are still mostly unwilling to talk about. The villain who is unmasked may or may not be the villain of the actual event. The language is ‘salty’ but is an accurate portrayal of the terminology used, and the subject matter dwelled on, when men assemble on a small floating outpost, experiencing feelings of excitement, boredom, elation, loneliness, lust and terror. I don’t recommend loaning the book to your Maiden Aunt. The ending, which of course I will not reveal, may underline the thread which Bob feels has run through his adult life. Possibly there is the chance of a sequel. I intended to scan my copy to pick out the salient details, but read it from cover to cover in one sitting. Now I am going to read it all over again. I suspect you may do the same.
Signed by the author ‘Buzby’ - ‘Richard Thompson’ on
MV Mi Amigo
Keith Skues and Dave Kindred, Foreword by Johnny Beerling Contributions by Tony Blackburn, Hans Knot and Peter Moore
In an age when the airwaves were tightly controlled by the authorities, pirate radio was the illicit and illustrious haven for music-lovers across the nation. From the first broadcast in 1964, the cowboys of the radio world fed their listener's desire for pop and rock music and, by doing so, changed British radio forever. Through more than 100 crisp, black-and-white photographs, Pirate Radio: An Illustrated History brings to life the 'golden years' of pirate radio. Featuring pictures of the crew - including famous DJ Tony Blackburn and founder Ronan O'Rahilly - the boats and the fans, this book takes the reader on a journey from the formative years of Radio Caroline, through its political persecution and beyond. Written by former Radio Caroline DJ and current BBC Radio host Keith Skues and with photographs by David Kindred, Pirate Radio: An Illustrated History is a unique and beautifully appointed account of the age when the pirates ruled the airwaves.
Hardback Photobook 160 pages
100 Black & White Photos on high quality pages
75 cm x 25 cm
Signed Insert by authors Dave Kindred & Keith Skues
Pirate Radio: An Illustrated History - Hardback Photobook by Dave Kindred & Keith Skues £17.99