University productions go head-to-head for radio award

Tue 19 October, 2021
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Two successful radio shows created by staff, students and graduates from the University of Bedfordshire have been shortlisted for the same category at the upcoming 2021 Community Radio Awards.

The nominations represent continued success at the Community Radio Awards for the University, with Gold awards won at the 2019 and 2020 ceremonies. This year, both productions – On Track In Greensand Country and The Beginning of the End – are in contention for the Arts & Creative Radio of the Year title.

Already a 2020 Gold award winner for his podcast Primrose and Terry: In the Shed which he records with his daughter, Senior Tutor in Radio & Audio Terry Lee is producer and co-presenter on the newly nominated On Track In Greensand Country. The show takes the shape of an audio journey as Terry and fellow Senior Lecturer, Dr Lawrie Hallett, travel from Bedford to Bletchley, alighting along the unique Marston Vale Line

Terry said: “I’m so pleased On Track In Greensand Country has been shortlisted for a Community Radio Award. We recorded it in the space of just two weeks – at a time where the public were still wary of train-travel post-Covid – as a way to promote not just the Marston Vale Line, but the beautiful area that surrounds each of the stations, by speaking with local characters of Greensand County.”

Marston Vale Line

Tracy Cowan, Chief Executive of Bedfordshire Rural Communities Charity (BRCC) which commissioned the show, commented: “We were surprised and delighted to be nominated for an award. I know the radio piece was really well received during our Greensand Country Festival so it is great to see that is it still being appreciated by a wider audience. I’d like to thank all those involved who made the recording happen.”

Stephen Sleight, Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership Officer, added: “This is a fantastic project that has engaged a wide range of passengers, railway staff and stakeholders and brought some fascinating memories of the Marston Vale Line to light. It also plays a key role in our work to rebuild confidence in rail travel and is a great way to celebrate the 175th anniversary of our fantastic Line too.”

The Beginning of the End, meanwhile, is a single self-contained 27-minute audio story produced by a group of final year students for their Radio 24/7 unit. The programme originally aired on the University’s radio station, Radio LaB, and follows characters as they negotiate a fictional world three years into a deadly pandemic that has caused confusion and war.

Fariza H Sultana, Media Communications graduate, wrote the tense and captivating script. She commented: “I am honoured to be nominated alongside other very capable radio producers. Winning this award would mean that our hard work is recognised. I am proud of myself and my team, and am both grateful and thankful to those who kept supporting us throughout our journey.”

Manny Donhkon Odoi, Media Performance for Film, TV & Theatre graduate, was Producer of the project. He said: “With this nomination, it feels great to be recognised for our hard work. Winning would be glorious! I’m proud of the work we put in despite our challenges with lockdown.”

Terry Lee, the students’ tutor, added: “I take enormous pleasure from hearing my students create professional quality radio. I remember marking The Beginning of the End and being blown away by the work of the students involved.

“The radio teaching team are always extremely proud of all our broadcasting students, but to have undergraduate work shortlisted for a national award is a phenomenal achievement for Fariza, Manny and the other talented members of their production group.”

The Community Radio Awards award ceremony takes place on Saturday 23rd October at Coventry Transport Museum. Tickets to attend the award ceremony are £20 and can be purchased here.

For information about studying Radio at the University of Bedfordshire, click below. 

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