Mearns FM appeal for help to keep the ‘wolves from the door’

Board member and presenter Paul Hazelle, front, with Mearns FM chairman Peter Greig
Board member and presenter Paul Hazelle, front, with Mearns FM chairman Peter Greig

A charity-based radio station that broadcast throughout the Mearns are struggling ‘to keep the wolves from the doors’ amid funding cutbacks.

Mearns FM are requesting people to support them through their JustGiving page to get them through a dilemma caused by the loss of sponsorships.

Peter Greig, Mearns FM chairman, said: “We would like to try and rejuvenate the station name in order to create more interest in the local radio and what it does and why we are there in the first place.

“I remember the statement I saw when I was a lot younger ‘we work because we have to, we volunteer because we want to’ and that has stuck with me throughout my life.

“I’m adopting it to ensure Mearns FM does not have to shut down because we the community to whom we serve, and the members, didn’t try to do something about it.”

The station is ran and presented entirely by volunteers and it costs £850 a year to acquire the licence needed to broadcast as well as added costs to PRS and PPL to play music.

On September 10 there will be an open day at the studio on Allardice Street, Stonehaven, where visitors can see how the station works, and Mr Greig hopes it will drum up enthusiasm for the station.

He added: “Please come along and see what we are all about.

“We are also going to arrange to go youth groups and give talks on the benefits of having a local radio station on your doorstep and again trying to drum up interest in order to keep us on air.”

The lack of sponsorship has come due to the oil downturn, but Mr Grieg did not think the station was going to find itself in its current predicament. “Initially we didn’t think the downturn would have an effect on us,” he said. “But indeed it has because we have lost some of our sponsors as they themselves have had to cut back, and the comment I have heard was that in the current climate advertising is seen as ‘non-essential’.

“This is not good for us, so we are requesting people to support us to get us through the current dilemma we find ourselves in so if you can help us in any way then it would be gratefully accepted, and acknowledged by all the volunteers at Mearns FM.”