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volume 2
august 1999

Back on the air again


  Ten days to remember Radio Veronica
  door Hans Knot
  The last time Radio Veronica was on the air now dates back 25 years. In August 1974 the famous Dutch offshore radio station aired its last programme. In its days the station was very popular as it introduced new formats and styles of presentation to the Dutch public. This month a group of persons formerly working for the offshore radio station will memorate the station by bringing it back on the air again.

1 Veronica's ship The Norderney

During the period from August 22nd and August 31st there will be a special licence radio station on the air from Holland. The Dutch Radio Authority ("Commissariaat voor de Media") has given this licence to a group of persons formerly working for the offshore radio station Veronica, which was on the air between April 1960 and August 1974. For the frequency the Dutch Radio Authority has freed the 585 kHz medium wave.

2 With this special licence station the old Veronica crew will remember the good old days. At the moment talks are underway with the HMG ("Holland Media Group") to get permission to use the name Radio Veronica. When the offshore station did stop in 1974 it got a legal licence to work as a public broadcaster from December 1975 onward. A couple of years ago the Veronica Broadcasting Organisation ("Veronica Omroep Organisatie") went commercial again and is now a part of the HMG Group, which has also RTL4 and RTL5 as stations.
3 Several former deejays and technicians have been asked to participate in this special licence station. By that you can think off: Tineke Vos, Chiel Montagne, Jan van Veen, Rob Out, Joost den Draayer, Eddie Becker, Juul Geleick and Ad Bouman. Several former Veronica deejays have already consented to particpate in the live programming. Scheduled are Joost den Draayer, Tineke, Lex Harding, Bart van Leeuwen, Chiel Montagne, Eddie Becker, Jan van Veen, Krijn Torringa. Next week talks will take place with Tom Mulder, Rob Out, Tom Collins and Anuska. Famous Dutch singer Boudewijn de Groot, who was once a deejay on Veronica in 1966, will be asked to do a programme too. Will Luikinga, who is currently working in Spain, has also promised to do a show. Next week Robbie Dale will be phoned to come over from Canary Islands where he nowadays runs an hotel. After he left Caroline in 1968 he was a deejay for two years on Veronica.
4 De NOZEMA, responsible for the transmitter sites in Holland stated that a 5 kW transmitter can be made available for this project. This RSL broadcast will have a power of 5 kw and can be heard during daytime in the eastern parts of England. Nothing is yet sure about the use of the 585 kHz as the RDR, which is responsible for the frequencies in Holland, stated that the 585 is not officially open to the Netherlands. On Monday a meeting is scheduled with the RDR in Groningen to solve this problem. The transmitter will be on the air from the Lopik-site in Utrecht, so during daytime the station can be heard all over the Netherlands, a part of Belgium and on the East coast of England. It is not sure which programmes will be on the air during nighttime. We think of non stop music between midnight and seven in the morning but it could be that the live programming which is aired during daytime hours will be repeated in the night.
5 The main part of the programming will consist of old programme tapes, all more than 25 years old. These studiotapes were kept in the archives of Ad Bouman, Juul Geleick (both former Veronice employees) and Jelle Boonstra and Hans Knot. The tapes won't be run in a chronological way. So for instance you can listen between 7 in the morning and 9 in the morning to a programme from January 1971 while between 9 and 10 a programme from August 1966 will be played — and so on. There also will be live programming. Probably between 12 and 14 hrs Dutch time there will be daily two hour live programming, while also between 20 and 22 hours live programming of special shows is scheduled. During daytime news is scheduled 2 minutes to the hour. In this section old news as well a new news will be brought. Next to new newreaders also former newsreaders like Cees Man in't Veldt and Arend Langenberg can be heard.
6 During the evening hours between eight and ten Dutch time special programming is scheduled with each day another item. Scheduled are 'The Adje Bouman Top Ten', a special about the special programmes Veronica transmitted on the Stones and Beatles, a special about the Veronica jingles, a special about the work of the technicians as well as the people who worked on the ship the Norderney. Former technicians of Veronica will take part in the programming: Sietze Gardeniers, Juul Geleick, Ad Bouman, Dick Bol, Jos ten Hooge and Jurg van Beem have allready stated to participate. The programmes will be made, using the old Veronica equipment, which has been stored all those years and is now in perfect condition after a long check-up. A back up of modern equipment will be there if the old one gives problems.
7 Of course Veronica was not the only offshore radiostation in the sixties and seventies and therefore a short history on offshore radio will be transmitted in the special section on 25 and 26 of August between eight and ten in the evening. Production and presentation will be done by Offshore specialist Hans Knot and Ad Bouman. One evening the special will run all those mistery songs which were done by the former Veronica deejays, some of them really became big hits. Former Dutch artists, who did jingle productions for the stations in the seventies, will go back into the studio to sing a special jingle set for this ten days of broadcasts.
8 The programmes will be commercial programmes with commercials around the news. It has not been decided yet if the news will be on the top or on the bottom of the hour. Next to that, when old programme tapes are played, there will be also old commercials, which could be heard in the sixties and seventies. Permission is granted by the 'Reclame Code Commissie' — the Dutch Authority responsible for advertising on radio and television — to play the old commercials in the programmes. This due to the fact it are old documents which are broadcasts. These comercials will be transmitted exactly as they were produced more than 25 years ago. There is one programme which will not be repeated: Veronica very last hour. This has two reasons: First of all the original studiotapes has been lost and secondly the final hour of this time will be a happy one.
9 Plans are to build studios on two locations. One will be at the Hotel Lapershoek at the Utrechtseweg in Hilversum, where formerly the old Veronica studios were situated. The other location is onboard the MV Norderney, the former Veronica transmitting vessel, still lying in Leeuwarden harbour and nowadays used as a party vessel. Hotel Lapershoek at the Utrechtseweg in Hilversum will be the main location for the studios. This building is the former Veronica building. It's possible for the listeners to take a look at the activities in the Hotel during days of transmissions in the Laperszaal. A bar will be opened there for consumption. There also will be sale-stands with Veronica memorabilia.
  1999 © Soundscapes