WR International has come a long way since the early days back in 1982. Our days started off with a little 3 watt transmitter set to 103 Mhz FM. The transmitter cost £15 and came in kit form, it radiated for around 4 miles and we used this for about 2 months, we were at this time using the name Radio Mi-Amigo. We soon realised that we needed more power as the bug of radio had really got a hold of us by this time. It was then that we found a supplier of home made 15 watt transmitters, an order was made and the thing was delivered set once again to 103 Mhz.
This transmitter was much more efficient and could be heard some 20 miles away. We broadcast every Sunday afternoon for 4 hours until a visit from the DTI, needless to say they put a stop to things (for a while anyway).
Programs soon commenced with a transmitter that had been used by a station on 94.2 Mhz and used the name WCR, both stations had decided to merge and rather than have two stations on at the same time one better station seemed a better idea. WR “the hot fm” was born.
During these early days all output was recorded during the week and played back off cassette on a Sunday with the transmitter running off a car battery.
WR “the hot fm” ran for almost nine years with many frequency changes, due to new stations coming on the air both BBC and ILR.
These were good days and we were on air every Sunday regardless of the weather we would set off in our cars and then climb through fields and all sorts to broadcast what we thought was good radio. The format in those days was a mix of top 40 and oldies.
In 1991 the FM station was getting too much like hard work with very little response from listeners, we knew we had listeners but very rarely heard from them. It was time to try something new. The way to go we thought was Europe wide and Short Wave was the answer. Our original frequency was 12265 Khz next to what was then Radio Fax from Ireland. Within our first hour of test transmissions we had our first phone call from a listener in France who found us on the way to Radio Fax by accident. This was the idea behind 12265 as Radio Fax was a very popular station at the time, and it worked a treat. As far as listener feed back is concerned going onto short wave was the best thing we did. A frequency change happened in 1993 as it was realised 12265 was being used by other users, a mover to 12256 was made and we have been there since. The move to short wave also needed an obvious name change from WR “the hot fm” to WR International “Europe’s nostalgia station”.