Nick Hancock is back with new radio station but what can we expect from Your Harrogate Radio...

Ex-Stray FM legend Nick Hancock is back and ready to return to the airwaves as a brand new Harrogate radio station prepares for its big launch.

Thursday, 14th January 2021, 10:43 am

The popular presenter will host the Breakfast show on Your Harrogate Radio which will start broadcasting in March.

Offering listeners local information and all the latest community news from across the district, the former Stray FM DJ says he can’t wait to be back talking to the district.

“So many people have messaged me or come up to me in the street and said they really miss having their own local radio station" - Nick Hancock who is pictured in the Valley Gardens in Harrogate. (Picture by Gerard Binks)

Nick said: “So many people have messaged me or come up to me in the street and said they really miss having their own local radio station and asked me to do something about it, so now I have!”

He has always seen his role as one to champion Harrogate every day and meet lots of brilliant people, something he did for 11 successful years at Stray FM.

After launching Your Harrogate as an digital platform last October with a weekly podcast, prize competitions with local businesses and regular videos, the seeds of this new independent radio station were planted by the public themselves, says Nick.

He said: “It started to become a bit of a joke really. Every time I was shopping or out for a run somebody would stop me and tell me I needed to set up my own radio station.

“So I suppose I have just got fed up with people asking me.”

Nick says as well as familiar voices, people have missed hearing about what is going on in Harrogate since he left Stray FM - after it was was rebranded Greatest Hits Radio FM last year by its new owners Bauer.

Nick said he believed a truly local radio station was essential for Harrogate during these tough times - especially when the weather turned nasty as happened last weekend.

Nick, Your Harrogate’s content director, said: “The snow day last Friday proved how important local radio can be to tell you about what is happening where you live right now.

“I know from being on air during the first lockdown how many people use the radio for company and to cheer them up a bit during such challenging times”.

Having been touched by an emotional send-off at the end of August during a staff purge at Stray FM as part of its rebrand, Nick has been delighted to keep on engaging with - and serving - the town he loves so much, celebrating the best of life in Harrogate.

His departure last year was met by a huge wave of ‘best wishes’ on social media from fans and the great and good of Harrogate, all of whom appreciated his good-natured efforts.

Known for taking a positive attitude at all times, Nick is keen for Your Harrogate Radio to help the town stay hopeful during the pandemic and to present “the best of life” over the airwaves.

He said: “The worst of times has actually brought out the best in so many people and that is the kind of positivity we all need to share and celebrate.”

The new radio station will build on the existing popularity of Your Harrogate, promising something for everyone alongside local weather, travel, community news and some brilliant prizes.

As for Your Harrogate Radio’s music policy, Your Harrogate Radio will play a broad mix of music with classic songs from the likes of George Michael, Madonna, Elton John and Take That through to more recent hits from contemporary artists including Dua Lipa, The Weeknd, Lewis Capaldi and Lady Gaga.

The station will launch in early March and people can listen to it online, on their smart speakers and on the Your Harrogate app.

For more information, visit www. yourharrogate.co.uk

Your Harrogate Radio joins a large roll-call of local radio stations...

Your Harrogate Radio will join what have become increasingly crowded airwaves in the Harrogate district with the confidence that it is truly local.

Already battling it out for listeners are the likes of Harrogate Community Radio.

Set up by a group of three Harrogate friends as a radio station for Harrogate “by the community, for the community”, it’s been sticking to its ‘not-for-profit’ philosophy since it began broadcasting in 2019.

It seeks to give local people the chance to present and programe, in particular, in terms of music.

The district’s longest-running radio station is Harrogate Hospital Radio which first took to the airwaves in October 1977.

Broadcasting 24 hours a day, it provides entertainment and comfort to the patients of Harrogate District Hospital and can be accessed beyond the hospital via the internet.

A registered charity, it relies on fundraising and donations to provide its valuable service to the patients who spend time on the hospital wards.

A more recent arrival is HG1 Radio, which was launched for Harrogate last July.

It’s run by the people behind York-based community radio station YO1 Radio and boasts of being a “multi-digital platform local radio station for Harrogate playing today’s best mix of music from the last six decades, with local news and information.”

What had been Harrogate’s leading commercial radio station for nearly 30 years, Stray FM, was rebranded as Greatest Hits Radio last year under new owners Bauer, the German multimedia conglomerate, after a storm of protest.

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