HRB will be starting a new era this weekend as it launches on DAB radios across Basingstoke and the surrounding area.
The station is now licenced by OfCom to broadcast as a health and wellbeing community radio station and will be promoting healthy lifestyles to the people of Basingstoke and the surrounding area from 12pm on 31 March.
The nature of both the NHS and hospital radio has been changing for several years with fewer patients in hospital for shorter amounts of time and more people being looked after and receiving treatment in the community. The NHS is also keen to promote healthy living to keep people out of hospital in the first place and that is where hospital radio can help with a number of stations doing the same thing.
HRB is following stations such as Radio Tyneside and Winchester Radio by becoming a health and wellbeing community radio station but will still very much be featuring the patients and staff of the hospital with its request shows known as Music on Demand still a very important part of the schedule.
The launch comes 31 years after the station pioneered local commercial radio in Basingstoke with its coverage of the Basingstoke Carnival on a short term FM licenced station in 1992 and 1993. Known as Basingstoke Carnival Radio, the station led to two more short term stations as Kestrel FM which in turn led to the full time commercial station with that name that went on air in 1998.
Kestrel FM disappeared in 2012 and became The Breeze and is now part of the Greatest Hits Radio network, leaving local radio to community radio stations.