Radio Veronica, which had started broadcasting regularly in May 1960, didn’t introduce a news service until November 1965.
The service was provided initially by two newsreaders -
One of Veronica’s owners, Bull Verweij claimed they had a sophisticated network for gathering the news -
Early plans denied
The last comment from Bull Verweij had some substance because there is a record of the management of Radio Veronica approaching the General Dutch News Agency (Algemeen Nederlands Persbureau -
The ANP dismissed the request in a reply to Radio Veronica saying: 'There are serious impediments to the ANP at this time in providing a news service for the benefit of your organisation.’
A few years earlier, this same decision had been taken when Radio Luxembourg’s Dutch-
Despite what Veronica’s management said, others claimed that (as with many other offshore stations) Radio Veronica monitored the output of the official (Hilversum) stations, then rewrote the stories and broadcast them in their own news bulletins.
A few months after starting its news service research within the ANP showed that, despite statements to the contrary from its management, Radio Veronica was indeed listening to the official Hilversum broadcasters, rewriting and re-
To prove this was happening the head of ANP’s Radio News Service, S. Witteboon, decided in January 1966 to broadcast a false news story about a large fire on a chicken farm located in the non-
Less than two hours later the newsreader on Radio Veronica read the same story, thus proving to the news agency that its output was being ‘pirated’.
However, here was something of a backlash to the issue of this false story by the ANP -
Legal action ?
Despite the claim that this incident had damaged the agency’s reputation, the Board of Directors of the ANP met on 26th January 1966 to discuss the possibility of taking legal action against Radio Veronica.
However, they did not proceed because it was not at all certain that such a case could be won due to the fact that the Norderney was in international waters flying the flag of a foreign country and -
Additionally there was the fact that in 1963 Radio Veronica had in fact offered to pay for the news service, but this had been turned down by ANP.
At the beginning of March 1966, Radio Veronica received a letter indicating that the Management Board of the ANP considered the offshore station’s use of their news, without acknowledgement, was illegal and if the practice continued they reserved the right to take legal action in the future.
In response Radio Veronica's management instructed the newsreaders not to report the ANP stories verbatim, but to ensure that words and sentences were significantly changed.
The General Dutch News Agency (Algemeen Nederlands Persbureau -
The ANP Foundation was established on 11th December 1934 by the Dutch Dagbladpers (NDP) to provide the Netherlands with an efficient central news agency .
In March 2018 the ANP became part of Talpa Network, the media company of John de Mol Jnr (son of the person responsible for the management of the Radio North Sea International (RNI) Dutch Service). The Talpa Network is also the ultimate holding company of the current incarnation of Radio Veronica.
Thanks to Hans Knot for allowing us to use this information, originally published in his book Herinneringen aan Radio Veronica
Radio Veronica news intro