Future of Alderney radio station in doubt after mass resignation from presenters

Up to nine volunteer presenters at Alderney's community radio station have walked out in a dispute with management. Credit: ITV Channel

The future of Alderney's community radio station, Quay FM, is looking uncertain after several volunteers - including the station's manager and deputy manager - walked out following a dispute with the station's owners.

Dougal Bohan and Nic West are among nine presenters who have left or announced plans to leave the station, although they haven't publicly explained why they chose to leave.

Mr Bohan resigned while on air at the end of November, and later posted a statement online confirming his departure, saying "certain undesirable events and actions, out of my control, have been imposed on myself and the interests of Quay FM".

Dougal Bohan resigned from his role at Quay FM on air following a dispute with the company directors.

He went on to write: "This I cannot and will not accept or support, or even be a party to. I’d like to use a very fitting analogy: when certain players or individuals think they are bigger than the club and are happy to damage it and those in it for their own gains, it is time to leave the club."

Alderney politician Alex Snowdon was brought in to mediate between Alderney Broadcasting Company - which owns the station - and the presenters.

In a statement posted on social media, company secretary Nigel Roberts said: "We appear to have a starting point for discussion with the aim of ensuring how the company and the station can come out of this stronger and that's an achievement, although it is early in the process."

Volunteer presenter Ian Taylor set up a Facebook campaign to 'Save Quay FM', which he describes as "dedicated to saving the station from disaster and the appointment of a new Board of Directors".

He said while the discussions were "cordial and constructive", the two parties had not been able to resolve the dispute:

"We had all hoped to see common sense prevail for the good of our island radio and our community. The radio station and its presenters who keep the island informed and amused were so invaluable during Covid.

"Regretfully, that hasn’t been possible and Dougal, Nic and up to nine of us volunteer presenters will be leaving Quay FM in the coming days."

Quay FM started broadcasting each summer on 87.7 FM in 2000, and was granted a licence to broadcast all year round in 2015.

Of Alderney's 2,000-strong population, hundreds of residents have signed a petition calling for "the immediate resignation" of the company's directors, and for the station's volunteers to appoint a new board.

Quay FM's licence to broadcast on 107.1 FM in Alderney runs until February 2025, at which point the broadcasting regulator Ofcom could allow other applicants to express an interest in setting up a new community radio station on that frequency.

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