Celebrating 50 Years: 1970’s Fund Raising

In another of our series of articles to mark our 50th birthday, we take a rummage through the Radio Warneford archive to remember some of our fund raising efforts in the 1970’s.

Since its inception in December 1973, Radio Warneford has always relied on the generosity of others to support both the development of the station and its day-to-day activities. Once the station was officially registered as a charity in 1975, larger scale events to raise funds became possible.

The first of these was a Pram Race in May 1975. The event involved teams racing a pram around the Pump Room Gardens in Leamington Spa with the aim of completing ten circuits of the gardens in the quickest possible time. Tickets were sold to raise funds with the public invited to guess the fastest time in return for prizes including a travel voucher and a bottle of Scotch.

Of the eight teams that took part on the day, five managed to finish the course with the fastest team made up of staff from the Pathology Laboratory at Warwick Hospital. They completed the race in 18 minutes 26 seconds and received their prize from the Mayor of Leamington, Councillor Fred Fowler. The Pram Race later developed into a Bed Push, again around the Pump Rooms.

In December 1976, Radio Warneford held a 72-hour Broadcast in the window of 16 The Parade in Leamington Spa in celebration of the station’s third birthday. Punters were asked to guess how many records would be played over the 72-hours with prizes like a bottle of sherry and a petrol voucher up for grabs!

As well as hosting their own events to raise funds, Radio Warneford was also the recipient of money raised by other groups on their behalf during the 1970’s. A sponsored pub crawl was held around Leamington Spa with proceeds of £3,200 shared between Warwick Hospital and Radio Warneford. The landlady of the New Inn in Leam Terrace was awarded a Challenge Trophy by Leamington Lions in recognition of raising the most money for the event!

Meanwhile, students from the Majestic School of Dancing in Leamington staged a 24-hour dance marathon to raise money for three local charities including Radio Warneford. Only seven of the initial twenty-two starters lasted the full 24 hours but the event raised over £600.

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