Community Radio Awards 2018
Written by Jay Sykes on 17th August 2018
Your community radio station has been nominated for six national radio awards.
Here’s who’s shortlisted in the Community Radio Awards 2018:
Spark itself has been shortlisted for the highly coveted ‘Station of the Year’ award. “A station nomination is such a monumental win for us in the current community radio environment,” said Scott McGerty, Compliance Manager at Spark. “We face immensely different challenges to other community radio stations, so for this to have been recognised is such an uplifting acknowledgment for our volunteers.”
Since 2009, Spark has provided young people in Sunderland a voice, and a platform, to develop talent in radio production & operation. “This nomination is a nomination for every member of Spark who has contributed across the year, a reflection of our teamwork and very strong leadership,” said Scott.
Scott’s own weekly programme, Friday Evening’s Dance Revolution, has been nominated for ‘Specialist Music Show of the Year’. “To have Dance Revolution nominated for the third consecutive year in a row means the world to me,” said Scott. The dance and old-skool music show took the Silver award in 2016 and 2017.
“I have such a strong and passionate team around me, and to be nominated for our chart of the year is even better. It’s a show that is completely based around our listeners; we spend 51 weeks of the year curating the best new cuts for them, then one week a year they vote for the best ones and we get our final chart. It really is a show where we bring people together.”
Shortlisted in two categories this year is ArtyParti, a weekly arts discussion show, hosted and produced by the University of Sunderland’s academic tutor Jay Sykes. “ArtyParti is all about providing a platform for artists & creative practitioners – to talk about issues important to them in the North East, and promote their projects.”
ArtyParti recently celebrated its third birthday, with a gathering of around 70 artists and regular listeners alike, in the redeveloped city centre venue ‘The Fire Station’. “Seeing so many of our audience come together under one roof was incredible – and a testament to the strength of community radio as a tool for building a network.”
“We took the gold award for ‘Arts and Creative Radio of the Year’ in 2016, but considering how much the programme has changed and evolved since then it’s wonderful to see the impact that ArtyParti has had on the area recognised once more,” said Jay. The arts discussion show is also shortlisted for ‘Community Show of the Year’.
Ryan and Beth Smith, both BA Broadcast Journalism graduates from the University of Sunderland, are nominated for ‘Entertainment Show of the Year’, for their Monday Drivetime show.
“We’re over the moon to be nominated for the award, we love doing the show and have plenty of fun doing it!” says Beth Smith, nominated for ‘Entertainment Show of the Year’. “Getting out and about in the city we love and have been in since we were born means the world to us.”
At last year’s Community Radio Awards, Ryan and Beth won Bronze in the same category, and they’re hoping for a similar outcome. “Given that we present in a station that represents the community we grew up in, it’s a huge honour to be nominated for the second year in a row,” said Ryan.
Also nominated is Sportsbyte, Spark’s weekly sports programme. “I want to thank the whole team, and every guest we’ve had on board. This nomination means the hard work of the team makes a difference,” said David Shaw, Executive Producer of Sportsbyte. The programme received a Gold award at last year’s Community Radio awards in the same category, ‘Sports Show of the Year.’
“To have and provide a platform for local sports to have a voice is the most important thing, and for it to be acknowledged with a nomination makes it all worth it.”
The awards ceremony will be held in Sheffield Hallam’s Students Union venue on September 15th – so less than a month until the announcement. The members of Spark will be biting their collective fingernails until then.