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Radio Delmare - History (2)

The planned re-launch of Radio Delmare received a setback in May 1979  when, after some landbased transmissions had been conducted to test equipment, the authorities raided Gerard van Dam's premises near Antwerp and confiscated two US military medium wave transmitters which were being modified for use on the radio ship.

However, van Dam quickly managed to acquire more transmitters and this time they were successfully installed on the Martina. On 2nd June 1979 non-stop music and Radio Delmare jingles were broadcast on 192m. These tests continued for about 10 days and by the middle of June 1979 a regular programme schedule had developed.

Broadcasts continued almost without interruption until Sunday 12th August 1979 when each hour during the morning announcements were made to the effect that the DJs had 'taken over' the station because they were dissatisfied with the way Gerard van Dam was running the operation and because he had failed to keep the vessel regularly supplied. Radio Delmare's output generally deteriorated after this date and many of the taped programmes from the station's landbased studios were no longer aired.

On 12th September 1979 an International Service was introduced from 6.00pm -10.00 or 11.00pm on 186m after the usual 192m transmissions had ended. By the third week of September 1979 only one person remained on board the Aegir II - Johan Rood the engineer and he was running the station single-handedly including presentation of all programmes! Unfortunately during the early evening of 28th September 1979 the station's signal faded out and Radio Delmare was never heard again. During its short life Radio Delmare, despite all its transmission difficulties, had received over 8,000 letters and reception reports from listeners.

There were plans in early 1981 to re-launch Radio Delmare from the MV Morgenster. However, in May 1981 this vessel, which at one time had been a tender for Radio Caroline, was impounded in Amsterdam by Dutch police, who found studio equipment, but no radio transmitter, on board. After this incident there do not appear to have been any further attempts to re-launch Radio Delmare from an offshore base.

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