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Radio Sutch & City in Pictures & Audio Part 3

Updated : 19th October 2009 Issue : 2

Top of control tower on Shivering Sands fort

Clinging to the derrick on the Control Tower on Shivering Sands Fort a lookout waves a welcome to our tender

Newspaper sketch of navy raiding Shivering Sands

When the authorities heard that Radio Sutch had boarded the Shivering Sand Forts in May 1964, a battalion of marines were dispatched to evict those on board the former but abandoned MoD Fort


Audio Break

Early recording of Radio Sutch with Brian Poole in May 1964

They were though recalled to base before they reached the Gun Towers, officialdom had deemed it not worth the bother of evicting the squatters. The newspaper sketch of the time above depicts what might have happened

Dick Dixon on air in 1965

Note in audio clip below how records often jumped, slipped, or were started at the wrong speeds, & yes we were all guilty


Audio Break

Dick Dixon hands over to Jeremy Stewart for his short lived venture into broadcasting

An old school friend of Chris Cross alos from Chester, Jeremy 'Stewart' Edwards was invited by Chris to help out over a weekend in early 1965, this above is from the original recording

Radio City 299 & 188 mmw sticker

The second proper Radio City sticker showing the 188 transmitter instaled in 1965 to provide a signal into London for the prime revenue source, the religious programmes

Group DJ's & Engineers on roof of Shivering Sands G1 gun tower

On top of the 3.7 G1 Gun Tower. Alexander Dee talks to Engineer Phil Perkins having his breakfast, then ? Dick Dixon & Chris Cross in the foreground

None of us can remember the other fellow can you?

Ian West with Tony Pine in galley

Whilst Engineers Ian West & Tony Pine emerge to start of another gruelling day

Note the catering can of Nescafe little changed, Tide washing powder, & the Hacker portable radio a model once again available

Guard on control tower on Shivering Sands

Uncertain times, armed with Dick's rifle on the Control Tower with the Bofors Tower behind continuing the vigil looking out for unwelcome visitors especially those from Radio Essex across at Knock John

Chris Cross in transmitter room

Chris Cross makes some notes in front of the 299 transmitter on a table fashioned from an upended ammunition case & piece of board

Toppled G2 gun tower

This shot from March 1966 is one of the last pictures of the G2 Gun Tower tower toppled by the Ribersborg collision of 1963

It provided a background of groans as it ground away until removed by the Port of London Authority, who used the Searchlight Tower behind for their own wind & tide gathering

Searchlight Tower Bottom Floor Fort Plan

Searchlight original design of bottom floor

Searchlight Tower Intermediate Floor Plan

Intermediate floor of Search light tower

Searchlight Tower Top Floor Fort Plan

Searchlight tower top floor

Drawings by J A Posford the fort builders from "The Construction of Britain's Sea Forts"

For more details on all the Thames Estuary Forts see Fort Fax

For a range of books on the building of the Army & Navy Forts go to Offshore

Reg Calvert alongside Radio London's MV Galaxy

Meanwhile Reg Calvert is over by Radio London's Galaxy talks about selling Radio City

Radio City QSL card

With a new mast shown on this QSL card, City became the Tower of Power

Tom Edwards portrait photograph

Mothers favourite Tom Edwards publicity shot from 1966

Dorothy Calvert on jungle walk

A dramatic shot of Dorothy Calvert crossing the jungle-walk from G1 Gun Tower to the Control Tower after assuming control following the death of husband Reg, & recalling the first visit out to the Towers


Audio Break

Dorothy Calvert talks about Radio Sutch's choosing & using the Forts

DJ Eric Martin with Dorothy Calvert in studio

The other Eric Martin the DJ with Dorothy Calvert in the last on air studio. Not much had changed, virtually all the equipment was reused, other than the addition of a home built mixing desk & some other turntables

Shivering Sands in 1967

The Tower of Power one of the last shorts taken from the tender leaving the fort showing Shivering Sands complete with the big mast in 1967

Port of London helicopter on gun tower G5

When the station closed down Shivering Sands still had boarders after 1967. The Port of London Authority continued to use the searchlight fort for their remote wind & tide gauge

Separated from the main cluster it was modified to take a service helicopter, here's the first trial landing from 1990

LANBY off Shivering Sands Fort

In 1992 a LANBY (Large Automated Navigation Buoy) was anchored few meters north west of Shivering Sands to provide the readings when it was felt that the fort had deteriorated beyond safe use

This story continues from Sutch & City Part 4

For a surname A-Z biograghy of the Radio Sutch & City Jocks The Pirate Hall of Fame

Found your website and I think it's really interesting. I'm fascinated about the forts and love to read anything about them that I can find. I've been on a boat trip to view them, and I would love to go inside them, but I can't see that ever happening. As you've been on them, you are the only one who can satisfy my curiosity about what conditions are like onboard. Please describe them to me - what remains from the war years and what remains from the pirate station years. Would it ever be possible to go onboard now - and how? Looking forward to hearing from you. Nikki Elkington

PS I found a page within your site that showed photos of the insides of the thames estuary forts as they are today (with I think the DJs who were on them in the 60s). I can't now find that page and I'm going mad looking, so can you be very kind and email me the relevant page. I'll be eternally grateful!

Dear Nikki We've a number of CD Documentaries, Books & a Video covering the forts from design, sinking, war-time, offshore & more recent use all at reasonable prices to order go to Offshore Shop

Look around further "Scrapbook" for the ever increasing number of photographs & detail on all the forts

For all the Shivering Sands features navigate from Sutch & City Part 1

For Red Sands & it's Radio Stations navigate from Red Sands Rendezvous

For the Navy Forts & their Radio Stations navigate from Radio Essex 222 & Sealand One

For details on all the Thames Estuary Forts see Fort Fax

Make sure you also see the NAB "Mystery Tower" the forerunner to Maunsell Forts in Sailing the Solent

For the range of documentary CD's in the Offshore Radio "Roaring 60's" collection, the Sealand VCD, books, & a video on the Army & Navy Forts go to Offshore Shop


[HOME] (c)Bob Le-Roi 2002