The Last Day of the Pirates


In the mid-Sixties, as a small boy, my mother and father would take my brother and I on a bucket-and-spade holiday to Frinton in Essex. The town was famous for it’s ‘nothing-happens-here’ quality. One of the few things I remember from those holidays was the sight of two ships, three miles off the beach, with very tall masts.
It was on this day 50 years ago that the Labour government of the day saw their law banning these ships come it force against the will of millions of listeners. The so-called Pirate Radio stations were outlawed and replaced by a lacklustre state-owned copy in the form of BBC Radio 1.
I have often wondered what those who suffered the seasickness, supply shortages and foulest weather that the North Sea could throw at them think of their legacy – radio that is bland, identikit and soul-less, a far cry from their days on the high seas…

Its left to wonder,
what these pioneers,
think of their legacy,
after fifty years!

Who could ever forget the jingle: Wonderful Radio London!

© Baldock Bard 2017
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