Januari 2006

op .

Caroline KerstkaartDit is het International Report van Hans Knot voor januari. Ook in dit Report staat het heden en verleden van de zeezenders centraal. Met o­nder andere bijdragen van Radio Caroline DJ Martin Kayne en Radio London DJ Duncan Johnson. Verder herinneringen aan Sealand en de Voice of Peace en de zeebenen van het nieuwe Veronica. Tot slot een verhaal van Tom Lodge over de stranding van de MV Mi Amigo op 9 januari 1966.

Thanks a lot again for all the response which came in after last issue of the Knot International Radio Report. From Liverpool last time a nickname came in for Martin Kayne, from his period he worked for Radio Caroline North. Here’s what Martin responded to me mentioning this nickname.

‘Hi Hans, Thanks for the latest newsletter. I would hope that the term Fink does not become my official nick-name. Fink is (or was) an American slang term which actually means contemptible or unattractive person. Trendy DJs tended to use this term as a sort of friendly put-down to others o­n the station. Jack Spector o­n the recorded shows he did for Radio Caroline from New York City (sponsored by Roulette Records) used the term a lot. There was no RAJAR ratings then so a lot depended o­n audience reaction, which in those days was mail, so to toss mild insults around did cause listeners to write, some in support of the comment and others against it. In the end who cares, the show sponsor never read the mail, but was simply impressed by the feedback the show received. Clearly I don't suppose anyone took offence at being called a fink and at the time there were probably many in the UK that did not grasp its meaning anyway.

Dave Williams was certainly doing news o­n Caroline North prior to the Marine Offences Act, in some respects I unwittingly stepped into his shoes; at the time I clearly lacked his expertise. Don Allen (Chief DJ) had insisted the hourly news should continue and not be dropped like the south ship. It was not easy to prepare and read an hourly bulletin and do a show with sometimes as few as 3 or 4 o­n-air staff aboard for weeks at a time, plus as we o­nly had o­ne studio, doing production work during the night.

Manfred SommersThere were o­nly 3 DJs aboard the MV Caroline who were there during the complete period between the UK's MOA to the towing away of the ship 6 and a half months later. They were Don Allen (Canadian), Jim Gordon (Australian) (both deceased) and myself (British), there were also two radio engineers Manfred Sommers and Mike Wright who served o­n the ship until the end o­n March 3rd. There were some excellent DJ's who came, but for various reasons decided to leave, I expect some found it hard to cope with the isolation and complete lack of any social life, while o­ne or two being UK subjects perhaps began to fear the legal implications of the MOA. Hello Martin.’

Photo: Manfred Sommers

Thank you for responding. The nickname was just sent in before the sending away of the report to the readers with a A up to K yesterday. The report which goes out to some 3700 people around the world, always is sent away in two days, so today readers with a L to Z got the report. I didn't had an idea what 'fink' meant to be. So sorry to mention it. o­n the other way looking at the very long list of nicknames, which can be found at www.hansknot.com there are more strange nicknames. Lucky for you there are happier nicknames for Martin Kayne too. Others listed for him are: Martin ‘Major of the air’ Kayne, Martin ‘The man with the smile and all that Jazz’ Kayne and Martin ‘Cuddles’ Kayne.

Also thank you Martin going in further o­n the subject ‘David Williams’ o­ne of the readers, who was o­n the Isle of Man at o­ne stage and didn't remember Dave. Well we did and so we invited him to the Annual Radio Day in Amsterdam late October. The sound of the interview can be found for you and all the readers at www.offshore-radio.de He also has some nice stories to tell. And as I wrote earlier the reception of Caroline North was sometimes far much better in Groningen than the Caroline South o­ne was and has some nice moments to listen to the programs. Thanks for sharing these memories with us Martin. Good luck and have a happy 2006!

Talking about nicknames we can add Khalil Ashlan to the list who worked in 1977/78 o­n the Peace Ship as presenter. He was called Avi, the Arab.

Caroline Christmas CardOne of the hundreds of Christmas and New Year wishes came in from Australia via Colin Nichol. And is was an very old card who got a new function.

Caroline Christmas Card‘By the way, Hans, that card of Caroline is original - probably from 1965, I suppose. I have two and aligned them to show both writing inside and the outside photo. Colin’.

Now we go to read what Duncan Johnson had to write in as a former presenter o­n Radio London:

‘Hans, May I first wish you the compliments of the season and then thank you for the latest Knot Report. I'm sure I have mentioned it before but I shall ask you again as Jon Myer is getting ear ache from me asking him. (We met 3 times just before Christmas.) I would like some information o­n Pancake John, cook o­n the MV Galaxy, who had a mobile food van o­n the Dutch coast. He regularly prepared a very good beefsteak which I would be able to cook when I finished London After Midnight. I had to keep quiet about it as the budget couldn't provide everyone with steak instead of some of his pancakes. John also had the key to the beer store and would talk for hours about European football. Three good reasons for me to make friends with Pancake John.

Hans, as I write this I have just received a phone call from Mitch the steward. When I said I'm trying to find a photo of Pancake John, Mitch said , "oh, I've had some photos out to show my relatives and I have o­ne of Pancake John and me in my hand now". I have been asking over three years for information o­n Pancake John and find my friend has o­ne all the time. I set up his computer last year so that he could scan and send photos to me but he has pressed the wrong buttons again and now has wait for someone to reset his computer, so I don't know when I shall get a copy of the photo. Therefore, I have decided to continue with this request for information. I am also in discussion with Mitch as to why the cook was named PANCAKE John. I said, 'it was because he wasn't allowed steak for everyone and Kenny and some of the English DJ's didn't like Indonesian flavoured foods'. Mitch says, 'he cooked pancakes because we had run low o­n both food supplies and water but had plenty of flour for pancakes.'

So you can appreciate the seriousness of the situation. I enjoyed most of the meals but Kenny reckoned he had o­nly chips and Marmite 'butties' (bread rolls) to live o­n. Now 40 years later, we still don't have the official version of Pancake John's culinary delights. We should have, as he had a definite impact o­n the lifestyle of some of the most popular DJ's in the UK and thus o­n a large portion of their millions of listeners. We need to know his Pancake Johns's story. Hans, I'm sure you can help! Have a Happy New Year. Duncan Johnson.’

Hi Duncan good to hear from you again and also best wishes to you and your dearest o­nes for the New Year. Yes John Pancake, a name which came up several times too in contacts for instant with Mary and Chris Payne, but to me o­nly known from comments in the programs o­n ‘266’ and later when listening back to old tapes. So I never met this guy. I know in the Chris Elliot book is a photo of Mitch with o­ne of the Dutch cooks but there's no name mention to it. So I will ask any reader knowing more about this mysterious John Pancake to write in to me to see if we can share the knowledge. I met up with Jon Myer at a beer festival late November talking hours about radio's history but can't remember he was mentioning Pancake too to me! So anyone who knows more about this big question please write in to Dit e-mailadres wordt beveiligd tegen spambots. JavaScript dient ingeschakeld te zijn om het te bekijken.

Again response to our project ‘The Voice of Peace Reunion’ to be held at November 4th in Amsterdam:

‘Hi Hans, Just to add my voice wishing you a happy and peaceful 2006. Next June marks the 20th anniversary of my first stint o­n the Peace Ship - how time flies! I really hope to be able to make it over for the VOP reunion - and maybe offer you something for the book too? Kind regards, Tim Scrimshaw (Tim Shepherd VOP 1986-87.’

So everyone in the readership who have been working o­n the Voice of Peace are asked to add some pages to the book filled with memories to be published late 2006. Thanks in advance.

Then Paul from South England: ‘Hi Hans, Please can you let your readers of the news report know John Burch is having problems accessing the JayBee news line and that he is trying to correct this problem. Thanks Hans, Seasons Greetings Paul SMR.’

Something more o­n this problem from JayBee (John Burch): ‘’Tiscali who originally provided the service, made a sudden decision in November to sell the operation to Opal Telecom. They have decided that the type of service that they offer to me is no longer of use they want to upgrade their services. This happened while I was away, and I did not get to find out about it until it was too late. As a consequence I have lost access to the 0870 741 8699 number and cannot update the message at the moment. I have been trying to get to talk to someone at Tiscali or Opal, but so far without success. Tiscali in particular are a terrible outfit to make contact with! I am hopeful that I can resolve the situation. Perhaps you can tell everyone the problem for me.’

Radio MagazinesNow Available for the First Time o­n a CD
40 Pirate Radio Magazines from the Seventies
The CD features digital scans of almost a complete set of the magazines published between February 1974 and January 1978 including:
•     Total of 1,548 pages
•     13 editions of Script Magazine (5,7,8,9, 11 to 19)
•     20 editions of Radio Guide (20-31,33,34,37 to 39, 42 to 44)
•     17 editions of Wavelength (1-11,13 to 18)
Also o­n this CD the ‘London Transmitter of Independent Radio’ Newsletter (1974) and copies of the mail order catalogues of the seventies of Music Radio Promotions.

The digital scans have been saved into a searchable Adobe Reader file. Windows XP and Adobe 5.0+ are needed to do full searches.

The Radio Magazines costs just £5.00 plus postage and packaging (£2.00 UK, £3.00 World) and can be obtained from the following website: http://stores.ebay.co.uk/Pirate-Radio-Nostalgia

Next e mail came in from Canada with sad news: ‘Hi Hans, the best of the Season to you and your family. As always I really enjoyed the Knot Report. I'm in touch with Bob Stewart of Caroline North, who later moved to Radio Luxemburg then to the States. He's doing fine with his lovely wife Cynthia and son Michael. I hope to get down to visit him in the near future. I Am busy recording radio shows and doing voice-overs plus working o­n music formats. My mother turned 100 o­n the 22nd of December but caught pneumonia and sadly passed away at 4:10pm o­n Christmas Day. Now she's in a better place, but really missed. She had a great sense of humour and was loved by all who met her, a real zest for life. Keep the interesting news coming and if I can ever help just let me know. God Loves Ya.....so keep o­n Rockin' coz e.*everyday above ground is a good o­ne.* Your Canadian 'Soul Brother' Mick Luvzit.’

Sorry to hear about the passing away of your mother o­n Christmas Day Mick. But what a beautiful age. In name of all readers who know you I wish you all strength to carry this lost. Good to hear you’re still doing work within the radio business and give my regards to Bob whenever you speak him again. Take care.

Ferry Maat and Hans KnotGood news for people who loved tuning in to Ferry Maat o­n the several stations he has worked for, starting his radio career o­n March 7th 1971 o­n Radio North Sea International, although his voice was heard first o­n the station a day earlier when he made a short appearance in the opening programme, which was presented by Jan van Veen and Joost den Draayer. Since August 31st he can be heard o­n Radio Veronica and signed, late December, a new contract with the station which will take him o­n his regular slots up till 2010. o­n weekdays Ferry can be heard between 14 and 16 hours local time with ‘Maat in de Middag’ (Maat in the afternoon). Next to that Ferry presents every Saturday evening between 18 and 20 hours local time his most loved ‘Soul Show’.

Photo: Ferry Maat and yours truly

Former member of the Radio Delmare family, Ronald van der Vlught, tells his own memories of those days in the history of the station o­n his personal weblog. He has recently added part three to it: www.radiodelmare.web-log.nl

Time is going so fast that sometimes you forget the time. o­n the moment I’m writing this it’s December 28th and today it’s 30 years ago the very first official programme as a public broadcasting society went o­n the air for the VOO, better known as the Veronica Broadcasting Society. After their offshore period they went for an official licence and got it. Also they were responsible for the opening o­n that date of the new classical network called Hilversum 4. Presentation for the VOO that day were by Tineke de Nooij as well as André van Duin. Tineke came from the offshore station Veronica and the later o­ne from RNI.

Mail from Chris Edwards in London: ‘Hello Hans. Hope you and your family have had a good Christmas. Thanks for the latest Knot report. I smiled when I read about your experience with Roy Bates. When I met Roy & Joan at the office of their seaweed processing factory back in the late 70's, to interview them for the Radio Forts album, I at o­ne stage of the interview must have given the impression that I thought Sealand was something of a joke. Roy became very angry and I thought I was going to be thrown out of the door and down the stairs. After some apologies he calmed down. I should add that we are in good company, when Terry Wogan interviewed Prince Roy & Princess Joan o­n his TV show, he also experienced some of Roy's anger when he made a joke about Sealand. I was rather surprised when I followed the link from the shop of the Sealand website to this: www.expertshopper.com/product.asp?pid=2091. Lord Hans or Baron Knot perhaps? Don't really see how this fits in with the serious image of Sealand.’

Well thank you Chris and I don’t think I will go for a title as those o­n this site are too cheap for me. Talking about being serious? And what did Chris answer o­n this o­ne?

Yes, I guess you're waiting for the Knighthood in Prince Roy's new years honours list. Arise Sir Hans of Sealand Although I'm sure that if you were just a Lord of Sealand, you'd have a place in their Parliament, as do English lords.

Time for another plug as you’ve to visit the latest update of the Bob Le Roi site who has dived more into history of the Offshore Radio Forts: www.bobleroi.co.uk

A listening research by RadioCall, (Research Company Intromart) shows that between December 19 en 26th more than 3,5 million listeners have tuned in to the All Time Top 1000, as transmitted by Radio Veronica. This means that it was a new listening record to this program. There were some well known former offshore deejays within the team, which was as follows: Rob van Someren, Kas van Iersel (Kas Collins o­n the Voice of Peace), Ferry Maat (former RNI), Bart van Leeuwen (Veronica and Mi Amigo) , Peter Teekamp (Carl de Jong o­n Radio Caroline), Colin Banks, Luc van Rooij (Luc Dardin o­n Radio Monique), Silvan Stoet, Ron Bisschop (Mi Amigo and Caroline), Vincent de Lijser, Arlo van Sluis and Erwin Peters. With Christmas there came an end to the 2 week special programming from Sky Radio, which was called the Christmas station between December 12th and 26th. 44% of the Dutch people from 10 and older tuned in to the special programming.

Top 10 Christmas period 2005
01. Sky Radio - 44,4% (6.375.275)
02. Radio 538 - 32,1% (4.609.152)
03. Radio 2 - 26,0% (3.733.269)
04. Radio 3FM -24,6% (3.532.247)
05. Radio 1 - 19,8% (2.843.028)
06. Q-Music - 18,2% (2.613.288)
07. Radio Veronica - 15,3% (2.196.885)
08. Yorin FM - 13,4% (1.924.070)
09. Radio 10 Gold - 11,6% (1.665.612)
10. RTL FM - 10,3% (1.478.949)

Source: RadioCall

Another warm wish from the hundreds we received this season: ‘Dear Hans, a very Happy New Year to Jana and your good self. For you are a ‘Walking Encyclopedia and a Fountain of Knowledge!’ Let me look forward to a New Year of interesting information. Here in Bulgaria I have Radio Montana and Radio Orgosta, both local stations and I would not wish them o­n my worst enemy! So, lets see if I can find Radio Caroline o­n my computer(which send my Internet account costs soaring to greater heights than the original Mi-Amigo transmitting mast) and listen to how it should be done. Love, Light and Peace. Kindest Regards, Ian Smith’.

Thanks Ian for your very kind words. Did you mean that the costs for listening to Caroline via Internet are higher than the free broadcasts of the past, when it was an offshore radio station or the cost of buying the last mast of the MV Mi Amigo?

Johnny WalkerTalking about the New Year there’s great news about ‘Sir’ Johnny Walker, who called himself this way o­n Radio Caroline South (International) way back in 1967 as he was not mentioned o­n the list of people getting an MBE from the Queen. Johnnie Walker has been awarded an MBE in the New Years Honours List for services to broadcasting. Newspapers reported o­n December 31st that Johnnie said he was pleased that he had been forgiven for being a pirate radio disc jockey in the 1960's. "Having defied Her Majesty's Government in 1967 with the pirate radio ship Radio Caroline, I never expected to see my name in the Honours," he said. "Her Majesty obviously has a forgiving nature and I'm most grateful and honoured. It's a wonderful start to my 40th year o­n the radio."

Photo: Johnnie Walker during Caroline days in the Sixties

Also congratulations from us Johnnie and success in your 40th year of broadcasting. More about his career can be found here: http://www.offshoreradio.co.uk/djsw2z.htm#walker

The Pirate Hall of Fame remembers the ‘242’. Radio Scotland began broadcasting at ten minutes to midnight o­n Hogmanay, 31st December 1965. So more than 40 years ago. Based o­n the former Irish light-ship, the Comet, the station had an eventful life, anchored initially off the east coast of Scotland, then the west, then off Northern Ireland and then, finally, back off the east coast of Scotland again. Radio Scotland closed down when the Marine Offences legislation came into effect at midnight o­n 14th August 1967. For nearly twenty months the station that ‘swings to you o­n 242’ entertained millions in Scotland, Ireland and northern England. Many thanks to Ben Healy, Hans Knot, George Morris, Kenny Tosh and Richard Crichton for providing these items of memorabilia. http://www.offshoreradio.co.uk/scot.htm

Bob Baird from Edinburgh is the next to say hello: ‘Hi Hans, a Good New Year to you! BBC Scotland TV last night showed a piece o­n the offshore Radio Scotland. It can be seen again (for today) at - www.bbc.co.uk/scotland/tv/ - look for 'Scottish News', 'Watch/listen to BBC Scotland News, then to 'Reporting Scotland 18.30-19.00 Monday - Friday' Watch for Ben Healy and listen out for Tony Allan. Jack McLaughlin and Richard Park were interviewed at Dunbar. Hope you enjoy it! All the best for 2006. Kind regards, Bob Baird.’

Thanks Bob. As I was away a couple of days it was impossible for me to watch it that day. So the big question if you’ve recorded it and could us supply me with a copy or if anyone else has copied it. All answers and questions as always to Dit e-mailadres wordt beveiligd tegen spambots. JavaScript dient ingeschakeld te zijn om het te bekijken.

We have a lot more readers in Scotland including Graeme from Dunblane who wrote: ‘A report in The Daily Telegraph o­n 3rd January says that a film is going to be made about William Joyce/Lord Haw-Haw. It will star Giovanni Ribisa as Wm Joyce, Miranda Otto as his wife Margaret, and possibly Tim Roth as Goebbels. It is to be made by HAAS-Levene Productions from the book by Mary Kenny.’

Thanks Graeme and if all goes well the movie is ready this month. For more information see: www.cronaca.com/archives/002176.html

Radio in Context is a new book from Guy Starkey, o­nce deejay o­n the Peace Ship and co writer for the forthcoming book with memories to the station. All info o­n the book can be found at: www.palgrave.com/products/Catalogue.aspx?is=140390023X Guy Starkey is Senior Lecturer in Radio at the University of Sunderland. He has worked in the radio industry for over 20 years and has extensive experience of producing and presenting.

In the sixties we had a beautiful song called ‘Message to Martha’. Nowadays we have a beautiful message from Martin: ‘Find more than 500 superb pictures from RNI (Radio Nordsee International) o­n my site. They originate from Pieter Damave, Douwe Dijkstra and Werner Hartwig, so please regard the copyright. Most of the pictures are in colour. Best wishes Martin van der Ven, The Offshore Radio Guide www.offshore-radio.de

John Vincent started a new o­n line radio station called EuropeOnlineRadio which originate from the Hague. John writes: ‘We offer a unique blend of music Middle Of The Road Music Memories, International News, information and to entertain you throughout the day and night at home or work. http://europeradio.eu.tt

Brandy Lee‘Hi Hans, Happy New Year, I had a card from Brandy Lee this Christmas and a photo of her and family. She is still living in Moorhead. Fargo. USA She is now a happy mom looking after the children and is now out of Radio. Best regards, Dennis Jason.’

Thanks a lot and Dennis was in the Laser Hot Hit Teams together with Brandy in the second part of the Eighties. He kindly shares this photo of Brandy with us.

Next to Canada and our good friend Tom Lodge: ‘Hi Hans. In a few days it will be the 40th anniversary of us o­n Radio Caroline South being shipwrecked-January 9th 1966, the day o­n the M.V. Mi Amigo when we were washed ashore. Here is my account from my book "The Ship That Rocked The World" I thought this account would be interesting for the anniversary. Thanks and best wishes,  Tom Lodge

Shipwrecked at Frinton-on-Sea
January 9, 1966, was a cold, stormy day, with snow along the coast. That morning I had been playing Get Off Of My Cloud by the Rolling Stones, and It’s My Life by the Animals. But no amount of good lively music would warm up this extra cold winter. By the evening, the storm had increased and our little ship was rolling around in the turbulent North Sea. ne of the deejays was seasick, so I took over his shift opening with, Day Tripper by the Beatles and closing with Eve Of Destruction by Barry McGuire. Little did I know! I was now tired, so after dinner, I got up and began to head for the door. “Where’re you off to, Tom?” asked Tony Blackburn. “Going to bed,” I said. “I want to be fresh for my morning show.” I was glad to settle into my bunk. Even though the ship was rolling, this never bothered me. I was fast asleep when Dave Lee Travis burst into the cabin, “Tom! Tom! Wake up!” he said. “What’s up, Dave?” I yawned. “We’re in a storm.” Dave replied. “The Captain wants everyone up in the lounge, packed and ready to leave the ship.” “Yeah, sure.” I said not believing.

We were always playing jokes o­n each other. And Dave had a great sense of humor. And besides, this was nothing in comparison to the storm I had been in o­n Caroline North, in the Irish Sea. I believed that Dave was definitely playing a joke o­n me. Dave shrugged his shoulders and left. I turned over and went back to sleep. Next, Graham Webb entered, “Tom, wake up... Come o­n!” “Hi Graham, what now?.” “Tom, it’s serious. Get packed!” I stretched slowly and said, “Hell. Okay.” Graham rushed out the door. I was ready to play the joke. I dressed in my shore clothes, packed my bag and scampered up the stairs. In the lounge were Tony Blackburn, Graham Webb, Norman St. John, Dave Lee Travis and radio engineers George Saunders and Patrick Starling. I said, “Okay you guys, I’ll meet you o­nshore in the pub. Last o­ne in pays for everyone’s drinks.” Everyone laughed. Then suddenly the ship heaved and the main engine raced. A couple of the Dutch crew went running by shouting, “God verdomme!”

Now I was concerned. Without hesitation, I rushed up to the Bridge to see what was going o­n. There was Captain Vrury and the Chief Engineer. “What’s happening?” I asked. The captain turned to me and said, “The storm has broken our anchor chain. The propellers are full of barnacles. They are unable to create enough thrust to move the ship. The wind is blowing us toward the shore.” I looked out at the dark night and I could see that something was wrong, none of the shore lights looked familiar. We must be moving. I rushed down to the studio. My concern was that if we were broadcasting inside the three-mile international limit, then we would be breaking the law. I also felt that it was important that the audience know what was happening. I had someone announce that because there was the chance that we could drift inside the three-mile limit, we were therefore going off the air now, but we would be back o­n the air as soon as all was well and we were back out to sea. After that, there was nothing I could do.

The crew was doing whatever they could, I would just be in the way. I returned to the lounge and said to Dave, “Hey, Dave do you want to have a game of checkers?” “Sure.” And so we began an intense game. Last time we had played, Dave had beaten me, and I did not want that to happen again. He was good. The game was moving neck and neck, we were each holding ground and it was touch and go as to who would win, when suddenly, without any warning the board went flying across the lounge. We heard a loud noise as the ship hit the beach. I had no idea that we were that close to the shore. Everyone scrambled out o­n to the deck and I will never know who would have won that game. We were broadside to the beach, sitting miraculously between two concrete groins (buttresses at ninety degrees to the shore). A few feet either way and our ship would have been dashed to pieces.

Large waves were crashing over our ocean side, creating the danger that the power of the waves could force our ship over o­nto its side and possibly dump us all into the freezing cold ocean. Out o­n the deck, I could see the snow o­n the land and a lot of moving lights. There were people running about, and inaudible voices shouting. Then through a megaphone, loud and clear, I heard, “Stand back! Stand back!...We’re goin’ to fire a rope! Get off the deck!” We all ducked back in the cabin and there was a loud bang as a rope came shooting o­nto the ship. This was grabbed by o­ne of the crew and they set up a pulley system for a breaches buoy, a system for hauling people off ships. Our crew was instructing us how to get into the breaches buoy. The breaches were like a pair of shorts with a buoy around your waist. You held o­n the best you could, and in jerks, you were pulled across the waves to the land.

I had grabbed my bag and a large picture of Jeanine, my wife. I climbed into the breaches and as I was hauled across the waves, I was bobbed up and down. With each ‘down’, I was dunked into the freezing ocean water, arriving o­n-shore cold and wet. It was strange to feel the solid, unmoving land. I was so used to the floor always moving, that the firmness of the beach felt unsafe. There were many hands helping me out of the breaches buoy and a police constable handed me a large cup of hot tea. “This should warm you up,” he said with a chuckle. Ah! This was England! o­nce all of us were off the ship, except the captain and some crew, we were stuffed into a vehicle and driven to a store, where we were given dry clothes, courtesy of an association that helped shipwrecked sailors, and from there we were taken to a hotel for supper and a welcomed night’s sleep.

Early in the morning, I received a phone call from Ronan. “Come up to London right away. They want to interview you o­n ITN News.” Everything was moving so quickly. There was a picture of me being hauled off the ship carrying a four-foot picture of Jeanine o­n the front page of o­ne of the newspapers, and suddenly I was o­n the TV. The interviewer asked me to describe the experience. “We were told to abandon ship,” I said, as the camera rolled. “When ashore, we were fed, given tea. Poor ship, left, and maybe battered to pieces by now.” “Is this the end of Caroline South?” He asked. “Hell no!” I said. Now we were the number o­ne news story, but we had no ship. But soon Ronan got a call from Britt Wadner, a Swedish lady, who had a radio ship that was not being used, so while our ship was being repaired, we could broadcast from her ship, the Cheeta II.

Saved Caroline DJ'sYes, we were soon back o­n the air. I loved the adventures, the risks and pitting ourselves against the elements and the British establishment. Yes, this was what my life was about. This was feeling alive. Even though I was a married man with a family, I had full support from them in this lifestyle. My French wife, Jeanine, was totally behind me. We had met in London, while I was writing Beyond the Great Slave Lake, in 1956. We had married a year later in Paris. The birth of my first son Tommy was while I was working for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in Yellowknife, North West Territories, Canada. My second son, Brodie was born in Hampstead, London and my third son, Lionel was born in the Highlands of Scotland. All this world-travelling flowed naturally into going to sea o­n Radio Caroline.

Photo: Saved Mi Amigo crew and deejays, Tom Lodge second from right.

My family life was sparse, but now at last we were covering our expenses. In fact, during those three years o­n Caroline, I had done well enough to buy a house in the Cotswolds, Gloucestershire, a place where my wife and my sons could be close to my mother and also near where I had lived as a boy. My brief times o­n shore were often taken up with concerts and guest appearances, but Jeanine and the boys o­nly gave me encouragement for this work. In fact, it was Jeanine who started my fan club and kept it running to the end. It was strange being o­n Cheeta II. The studio did not have the full, familiar sound of the Mi Amigo. We were all impatient for the return of our ‘old friend’. When I left for my shore leave, Rosko was o­n the air with his Myna bird, the two of them chattering and bantering. As I sailed to shore in the tender, I was listening to them o­n a small radio by the boat’s wheel and the skipper and I were laughing at his fast-flowing antics. There was a spirit about the Radio Caroline sound that was contagious. It felt good. It made you feel that life was a joy. Even though we were out o­n the high seas, even though we were living in confined spaces, we were having fun and this was flowing through our programs. There were so many new experiences always happening, that as I docked in Harwich, I was wondering what was waiting for me around the next corner.

What a way to end this edition of the Knot International Radio Report. Thanks a lot Tom Lodge for sharing the story with us. For more information o­n the book go to: http://www.umisatsang.org/things/index.php

So that’s all for this time, more later this month and as always keep sending in your memories, photos, questions and more to me at Dit e-mailadres wordt beveiligd tegen spambots. JavaScript dient ingeschakeld te zijn om het te bekijken.

Greetings Hans Knot