New voices take to hospital radio

Ayr Hospitals Radio, which broadcasts 24 hours a day to inpatients at University Hospital Ayr, Ailsa Hospital and Biggart Hospital, has welcomed two new broadcasters – veteran former WestSound presenter Lou Grant, and the NHS Board’s own chairman, Dr Martin Cheyne.

Lou Grant first approached Ayr Hospitals Radio manager Mike Manley to ask if he could publicise a Scottish Night in which he was involved. Never one to miss an opportunity, Mike immediately invited Lou to visit the radio studio in the hospital.

Mike explains: “When I introduced Lou to our radio studio, he was delighted with the broadcasting system. I convinced him to join our radio team, he agreed and joined me a few days later to get used to our way of broadcasting. With his years of experience in WestSound, he slotted in really quickly and now presents his own weekly programme and enjoys every minute playing music and talking to the listeners.” Mike’s persistence also paid off when it came to persuading Dr Cheyne to get behind the mic. The two first met when Martin was Chairman of Ayrshire and Arran’s General Hospitals Division. Following the creation of a single NHS Ayrshire & Arran, Martin went on to become vice chair of Ayrshire and Arran NHS Board and was appointed Chairman in January 2012.

Mike adds: “Martin was always interested in what was going on at our radio studio in Ayr Hospital and was very supportive. Whenever we met at functions or meetings I would ask him to come along and join us whenever he got the time. When he became Chairman that didn’t stop me asking, though it was always tongue in cheek. One evening we were supplying the sound system for the Ayr Hospital Volunteers’ AGM, where he was speaking on behalf of the Board. Surprisingly he approached me to say he was ready to join our broadcasting team. After some training sessions, he has now got his very own programme and loves broadcasting to the patients and staff in the three hospitals.”

Dr Cheyne comments: “Joining the broadcasting team at Ayr Hospitals Radio has been a complete pleasure. I’m very grateful to Mike and his colleagues for giving me the opportunity to talk to staff and patients, and I hope that they will take the opportunity to contact me, too, to let me know what they think of the programme, and to tell me about the kind of topics they would like to hear discussed on the radio.”

Ayr Hospitals Radio has recently welcomed a further 12 volunteers to the team of presenters. They are Tracy Baird, Michael Stewart, Paul Murphy, David McCallum, David Shaw, Natalie Campbell, Johnny “Mac” Donald, Michelle Wells, Brian Anderson, Malky Wilson and Bill Paulin, along with Alan Cochrane, who joined the football commentary team.

Mike says: “I’m very happy to talk to anyone who would like to join our fantastic team of volunteers at this Charity, and getting the Chairman of the Board to join us, plus a man with loads of radio broadcasting experience, gives this charity radio station a real boost.”

To find out more, call Mike on 01292 614041 or email


Date of release: Friday 30 November 2012


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For further media enquiries about this topic, please contact:

May Smith

Head of Communications

NHS Ayrshire & Arran

Communications Department

Telephone: 01563 826107

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