Steve England's Radio Atlantis tape archive

Steve England

Steve England has very kindly sent us some recordings from the International Service of Radio Atlantis. This station broadcast from the mv Jeanine, anchored off the Belgian coast, from the end of 1973 until the Dutch government legislated against offshore radio in August 1974.
 
Radio Atlantis had a lower-powered transmitter than its rivals and reception was sometimes difficult. Many of these tapes are studio recordings and hopefully better quality than you will have heard before.
 
Radio Atlantis was heavily influenced by the offshore stations of the previous decade, with plenty of jingles and an upbeat fun presentation. The music was a mix of Top 40 and oldies.
 
Steve joined the station in early 1974, becoming Programme Director of the International Service in February after the departure of Crispian St.John.
 
Many of the tapes are undated. We have attempted to put them in a rough chronological order but this may not be totally correct. The first one features Crispian St.John from an early test transmission.


Crispian St.John

Steve England

Eddie Austin

Andy Anderson

Dave Owen

Scott Mitchell

Crispian St.John.
Steve England.
Eddie Austin.
Andy Anderson.
Dave Owen.
Scott Mitchell.
All these photos, and the one above, courtesy of Steve England.

Test transmission, 270 metres, December 1973, Crispian St.John:
click to hear audio click to hear audio This is an off-air recording and dates from before Steve joined the ship. Crispian mentions it is a Saturday afternoon and that it is after Christmas so we are guessing that it is from 29th December 1973. If so, the station formally opened for business the next day. (Duration 8 minutes 2 seconds)
 
Test transmission, 201 metres, February 1974, Steve England:
click to hear audio click to hear audio Monitor magazine reported that Radio Atlantis carried out test transmissions on 201 metres on 3rd February 1974 so that is probably the date of this studio recording. (Duration 4 minutes 21 seconds)
 
Undated Crispian St.John show:
click to hear audio click to hear audio The Flemish advert is for Carnaby Man, a boutique chain owned by station boss Adriaan van Landschoot. Crispian sends greetings to some of his friends in Sussex including his old RNI colleague Mark Stuart. Correspondent Ian Biggar says: “I believe it is a recorded programme as it is only one hour long and by this time CSJ was not on the ship but working in the office on land. He mentions that Steve is on the ship which would suggest late January or early February.” (Duration 5 minutes 45 seconds)
 
18th March 1974, Eddie Austin's first show, Yawn Into Dawn:
click to hear audio click to hear audio By March Steve had taken over as Programme Director and invited his old friend Eddie Austin to join the station to help Andy Anderson with engineering as well as hosting some shows. Eddie told us: “as my wife was expecting our first child it was agreed I would only stay a few weeks.” The final few minutes of this programme and some photos of Eddie on board the mv Jeanine can be found here. (Duration 5 minutes 52 seconds)
 
An undated Nightmare Affair:
click to hear audio click to hear audio A pre-recorded weekend show, The Nightmare Affair was presented from a studio on land by Scott Mitchell and Gabby Hernandez Omilado. In fact both were the same man. Real name Leon Tipler, he died of cancer in June 2013. There is a tribute to him here. (Duration 6 minutes 2 seconds)
 
Andy Anderson and Debbie England, new wavelength - 312 metres:
click to hear audio click to hear audio Despite having a full-time job as senior engineer, Andy Anderson also regularly presented shows on the station. In this clip he mentions the new studio and a new wavelength, 312 metres. Atlantis started transmissions on 312 on 17th April 1974. Andy's girlfriend, later wife, Lynda pops in and Steve's then wife Debbie England is on news duty (Duration 8 minutes 15 seconds)
 
9th June 1974, Dave Owen, Snap Crackle and Pop:
click to hear audio click to hear audio Dave Owen was one of the hosts of the early breakfast show, Snap Crackle and Pop, which went out before the Flemish service started each morning. In this clip he mentions that the station has been off the air after losing its anchor and drifting. Station owner Adriaan van Landschoot went up in his private plane to search for the ship and arranged for her to be towed back to the usual anchorage. (Duration 5 minutes 32 seconds)
 

Terry Davis

Michael O

John Harding

Dave Rogers

Debbie England

Ray Warner

Terry Davis.
Michael O.
John Harding.
Dave Rogers.
Debbie England.
Ray Warner.
Photos courtesy of Steve England, A.J Beirens and Ray Anderson.

 
Undated Terry Davis Midnight Special:
click to hear audio click to hear audio Former Radio Northsea International DJ Terry Davis was then studying at Hull University but he spent ten days on Radio Atlantis during his summer vacation. This clip is from a Friday night programme. John Harding is on news duties. (Duration 9 minutes 13 seconds)
 
Undated Dave Owen Snap Crackle and Pop:
click to hear audio click to hear audio More Dave Owen. We don't have a date for this programme but the Paul McCartney & Wings single Band on the Run is mentioned as a new release. It came out in the UK on 28th June 1974 so this clip is probably from late June or early July. (Duration 2 minutes 32 seconds)
 
An undated Michael O Soul Fiasco:
click to hear audio click to hear audio Another familiar voice from Radio Northsea International, although here using a different name. On RNI's World Service he was known as A.J Beirens, on Atlantis he was Michael O. His pre-recorded soul show went out each weekend. A couple of other members of the offshore family get a mention here too - Norman Barrington and Samantha Dubois from Radio Caroline. Sadly Michael/A.J died in June 2020. (Duration 7 minutes 36 seconds)
 
An undated John Harding show:
click to hear audio click to hear audio An off-air recording of a John Harding show, date unknown. (Duration 3 minutes 38 seconds)
 
On 25th August the Flemish Service of Radio Atlantis closed down. For the remainder of its time on air, the station was all in English.
 
27th August 1974, Dave Owen, Snap Crackle and Pop:
click to hear audio click to hear audio Dave Owen says hello to some of his Radio Jackie mates. There is also a mention for listener Nigel Tibbles. If that name sounds familiar, check out the Times article at the bottom of this page. Nigel went on to become a pirate himself. (Duration 7 minutes 8 seconds)
 
28th August 1974, Dave Rogers, Rogers Ranch:
click to hear audio click to hear audio Dave Rogers looking forward to being home for Barnstaple Fair because “in four days we will be no more”. The station closedown is looming. (Duration 5 minutes 41 seconds)
 
An undated Debbie England Midnight Special:
click to hear audio click to hear audio An off-air recording of a Debbie England Midnight Special. The transmission date is unknown but it must be near the end of the station's life because Atlantis's owner Adriaan van Landschoot is talking about the closedown. (Duration 8 minutes 41 seconds)
 
29th August 1974, John Harding, Blast Off:
click to hear audio click to hear audio Early evening on the 29th August and John Harding mentions that the Radio Caroline ship is on the move, heading for the English coast ahead of the Dutch anti-pirate legislation. Despite the impending closure, the station is still sounding up-beat. (Duration 9 minutes 31 seconds)
 
30th August 1974, Ray Warner:
click to hear audio click to hear audio Another of Atlantis's pre-recorded weekly shows, this one presented by Ray Warner. This clip from his last programme includes a phone conversation with Roland C. “Buster” Pearson editor of Monitor, the free radio magazine. (Duration 6 minutes 5 seconds)

With many thanks to Steve England.
 
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