A NEW radio station for the community launched this week.

Helping hands for the Blind, based in Eastrop, took to the airwaves on Monday, 3 June as they launched Helping Hands Community Radio.

The new station, based out of the Roger Morris Centre in Eastrop, will feature shows that include themed music, as well as other shows that give the community a platform to talk.

Among the guests on air on the opening day were Mayor of Basingstoke and Deane Cllr Diane Taylor and Mayor’s Consort Andrew Taylor, children’s author Sue Lawrence, and the Ark Cancer Centre Charity’s Mark Jones.

A radio desk, built by Basingstoke Men’s Shed, and equipment, installed by Chair David Chatten-Smith, are tailored to be used by people with visual impairments.

David said: “For me, radio is a forum that that people with disabilities can be a part of, and I thought that a community station would be perfect.

“We aren’t going to focus on disabilities or those issues, but we are going to be giving people a platform, that people can listen to world-wide.”

The station is available on hhcr.org.uk, and on an app in the Apple App store.

Cllr Taylor said: “I love the idea, and it is good to give local people a voice.

“I enjoyed being on the radio this morning, it was a great experience and a privilege. They have done a great job and Dave is an inspiration.”

Station manager for Helping Hands Community Radio, Christine Rowley, said: “The idea for a community radio station went from being an idea to a reality in two months, it’s really exciting.

“We’ve got all kinds of music and shows coming up, and we need more people to get involved, including presenters and admin volunteers.”

For more information, call 01256 463966 or e-mail admin@hhcr.org.uk.