An Introduction to Eden FM Community Radio

Being a part of community radio as a volunteer could be anything from one hour to 15 hours or more each week. My radio journey started in 2005.

Millions of hours are given by volunteers to many organisations across the UK. Some even risk their lives as volunteers, many go unnoticed, some are rewarded, but many will go on without any recognition of their achievements. So, many volunteers in serving the purpose they signed up for, take their reward from seeing those that benefit through their hard work and commitment, which of course is priceless.

Devoting your time for free to help the community is something quite special. In 2019/20, around 32.4 percent of respondents participated in some form of voluntary work (Share of adults volunteering in England 2005-2020. Published by S. Lock, Nov 27, 2020).

An estimated 20 million people volunteered in 2020 at least once, with a group, club or organisation.

It can take 2 to 4 years or more to build and switch on a community radio station from scratch in order to launch it with a full-time community radio licence. Eden FM is based in the Historical Market Town of Penrith, serving the Eden Valley in Cumbria since it was launched as a project in July 2010. It is the second community radio station I have been involved in as a founder and recruiter of a senior team along with voluntary staff, as well as being the key fundraiser amongst other duties.

Formerly the founder, wearing two hats as Chairman and Managing Director, I set up the Meridian FM project, on the Meridian Line in 2006, in West Sussex. On completing my last show at Meridian FM on Sunday 28th March 2010, I arrived in Penrith, Cumbria with my family on Monday 29th March just before midnight.

Community Radio is an asset to any area it operates in. It is a key communication channel in the community, run and presented by the community for the community. For Eden FM, named after the River Eden and the Eden Valley in which it is based, it is set between the North Pennine mountain range and the North Lakes mountain range of the Lake District National Park. An ‘out and about’ radio, it’s become established as a community radio, described and recognised by Ofcom as spending ‘more time out of the studio and in the community’.

At Eden FM Radio, our aim has always been to be ‘Seen and heard in the community we serve’, in one of the most beautiful and most sparsely populated areas of England.

Lee Quinn

Chairman and Managing Director