Registered Charity No 1068428

  Hospital Radio run by volunteers for the patients, staff and visitors of Halton General Hospital in Runcorn, Cheshire - Registered Charity No 1068428

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  What is hospital radio?     What songs are played?    Top 40 listener requests

How does it help?  smiley relaxing                  Recent Donations - see the About Us page

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Mary Hill's Indoor Sky Dive to raise funds

Indoor sky diveMary HillVolunteer Ward Visitor Mary Hill is taking part in an indoor sky dive to raise funds for Radio Halton.  She's going to the Airkix wind tunnel near Manchester on Monday 11 July 2016 to do this for us

We've set up a fundraising page for the event on Virgin Money Giving - follow the link here http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/MaryHill11 , and she has sponsor forms as well so please support her in helping us if you can

Find out more about Mary on her page of our website

2016 is our 30th anniversary

30th birthdayAll our volunteers agreed that we should do something special to mark 30 years of hospital radio in Runcorn.  We're having a stall in the hospital on Thursday 14 July between 10 and 2 and are delighted to say that the Mayor of Halton is coming to see us.  The tombola is back  - with some fantastic prizes on offer - so make sure you stop by to have a chance of winning

If you have any information about the early days of the station, please let us know.  You can find out how to get in touch on our Contact page

We've already had some newspaper clippings which suggest we have the correct date... thanks to Amy O'Connor, and her mum Karen Knowles, who was involved when it all started...

Karen and Cliff    presenters 30yrs ago

... and we're pleased to say we've had an email from Derek Owens, who was involved in the early days of the station - thank you for getting in touch! 

Volunteers Week 2016 - Market stalls in Runcorn and Widnes

VolsWkLogoPam Eastwood and Derek Gates were part of a stall in each of the markets to celebrate Volunteers Week which runs from 1 to 12 June this year... Yes, it is a bumper week, longer than just 7 days!Runcorn Market stall Pam Derek

Two people took application forms to join us at Runcorn market on Tuesday 7 June

Widnes Market stall Pam Derek

In Widnes market on Wednesday 8 June one person took an application form.  It was nice to chat to you when you stopped to say hello

Widnes Market crowd 16

100 miles walk

Walkies Dave John DerekOur volunteer Derek Gates successfully completed a 100 mile walk to raise much needed awareness and funds for two local100 miles logo charities:  Radio Halton and St Luke's Care Home in Palacefields.  Along with John Timms and David Timms, the three 'lads' have a combined age of 189, and walked 100 miles along 5 canals in 6 days

They started from Birmingham on Monday 9th May.  Both charities mean a lot to them and you can look at their ambitious journey on Facebook at canal walk and also on Twitter @fivecanalwalk16

Despite difficulties, they made the epic journey through all kinds of weather

WalkRuncornStation WalkMud WalkThumbsUp WalkRearTs WalkHeroes

Mayor and JohnAs they reached the finish on Saturday 14th May at The Brindley in Runcorn, the Mayor of Halton, Cllr Ellen Cargill, was there to welcome and congratulate them

Find out what motivated the lads here, thanks to Barbara Jordan of the Runcorn and Widnes World

They deservedly passed their target to raise £3,000.  See what the current total stands at on the Virgin Money Giving page, where you can still donate to both Radio Halton and St Luke's Care Home in Palacefields, part of Community Integrated Care

Alternatively, to donate just to Radio Halton, follow this link to our Donations section of the About Us page

When do Radio Halton broadcast?

HeadphonesYou can hear Radio Halton exclusively in Halton General Hospital 24 hours a day, as our broadcasts continue overnight thanks to our Myriad software providing a 'round the clock' schedule.  We include the news on the hour between 10am and 10pm

The hard-wired system feeds to the bedside and the speakers.  We also broadcast within the hospital via streaming on the Trust intranet, so staff in departments can access the service on their workstation computers

Currently, 10 people volunteer their time to provide the service to patients, visitors and staff

We're making more songs available on the playlist so that the same songs don't come round too often.  These are the kind of tunes we're were asked for, but didn't have, so we've put that right:

  • The Beatles 'There's a place'

  • The Beatles 'P.S. I love you'

  • Justin Timberlake 'Can't stop the feeling'

  • Sigma ft Take That 'Cry'
          • Rick Astley 'Angels on my side' 

What is hospital radio? 

freephone on the wardVolunteer Rob chats to patientOur volunteers visit patients on the wards and chat with them to help them relax. We find out what music they like, then play it for them when we get back to the studio

In between volunteer visits, patients can use the Radio Halton freephone to request a mention or a song to help the time pass more easily

Volunteer Rob chats to a patient

Patients can settle back into bed or an easy chair and relax to favourite music through ...

headset...the bedside headset - it's all technology from more than 40 years ago - no wires involved here, just a pipe into the console on the wall with a volume knob and a channel knob - so it is literally piped music! 

  • Select channel 3 for Radio Halton

  • Select channel 2 for BBC Radio 2 (we've recently improved the sound quality on this channel)

We hope to be able to add BBC Radio Merseyside to another channel soon, depending on the radio signal reception to ensure good quality sound

There are loudspeakers in the outpatient clinic waiting areas and also in Entrance 1 - nearest the busway - to help people relax whilst sitting there

Do you know someone in hospital?  You can find the station that serves their hospital and request a song or send them a message.  Just click on the HBA logo below to go to the site of the organisation for hospital radio in the whole of the UK

HBA logoAre you interested in joining hospital broadcasting?  If so, you can find out what we need people to do on our Join page


The benefits of music in hospitalSwarb at the Brindley 09

Legendary folk musician Dave Swarbrick says, "Hospital radio is a fantastic service, with volunteers giving their time free to entertain patients with music.  When I have been in hospital, which is quite considerable, I have been very glad of it.  As a musician, you don't realise the therapeutic effect it can have until you are receiving it yourself.  Without having music and great friends around me in hospital, I would have been climbing the walls.  Keep up the good work"

Find out more here... Why do we provide music?

Russell WatsonRussell Watson also told how music helped him through illness, when chatting to Ken Bruce in Dec 2010:

"Music helps Ė during the times Iíve been really ill, Iíve listened to a lot of music and I find music incredibly therapeutic.  There were days particularly when I was having the radiotherapy treatment and when I felt really down, and itíd give me a little bit of a lift and a buzz inside"

CompetitionsNCO bassoon

Radio Halton gave away a pair of tickets for the Friday 8 April 2016 concert at St Elphin's Church in Warrington by soloists from the Northern Chamber Orchestra

The programme featured Schubert's Octet, Mozart's Horn Concerto and 20th century composer Jean Francaix's Divertissement, which spotlights the bassoon, played by Llinos Owen - here she is in action on the right >

The winner on Pam Eastwood's programme "In Classical Mood" on Tues 5 April was Julie Shaw from Warrington

Thanks to Kathryn at the NCO for providing the tickets.  Find out more about the orchestra and its players at www.ncorch.co.uk

News - Streaming

We're currently streaming again on the intranet, following an issue with the settings for the output going through the Trust's computer in our office

We enlisted the assistance of our fellow volunteer at Radio General, Keith Inman, who has put together a box of tricks to resolve the issue - thanks Keith!

If you work in the hospital, you can listen on your computer while you work, using Windows Media Player.  Just click File, click Open URL..  and type http://HSD-180A:8080 into the box which will be in the box for next time you want to 'tune in'.  It works best with a pair of computer speakers, which the IT Team have said is fine to plug in, since the speaker in the desktop unit is very basic


  • Clare TealClare Teal came to Runcorn to appear at The Brindley on Friday 22 April 2016 and Graham Tarry caught up with her for a chat ahead of the gig.  Clare, along with her trio, showcased the music of Doris Day

  • Tommy TwiggSinger Tommy Twigg came to chat with Derek Gates, ahead of his show in Castlefields on 22 August 2015.  Tommy brought with him a recording of a song called "I fell in love kinda easy", which we played

  • Derek Gates spent some time chatting with Rev Philip Turner, who is the Chaplain at the hospital.  Listen out now for some "Thought for the Day" short talks from Rev Phil.   Find out more about what chaplains in hospitals offer at http://liverpool.anglican.org/Chaplains-to-Hospitals

New VolunteersEileen


Runcorn resident Eileen Kelly is just starting to do her training with Derek Gates on a Friday morning...
...look out for her as she visits the wards

There are another 3 potential volunteers going through the recruitment process at the moment

Change the world - or at least Halton!

Our appeal for more volunteers is called "change the world" - we've put it on this page for you to hear - click on the link, then click your back button on your browser to return here

Updated by:            The Webmistress purple spider  28 June 2016

The Webmistress is currently using KompoZer to update the site, IrfanView for image editing and WinSCP to upload the pages


Registered Charity No 1068428