Menu

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

50 Years Reflection of Irish Sea Rock N'Roll Ship that 'Rocked' UK Radio Waves

6th July 2014
50 Years Reflection of Irish Sea Rock N'Roll Ship that 'Rocked' UK Radio Waves

#RadioCaroline- Fifty years ago today, a revolution in radio broadcasting boomed from a ship that dropped anchor off the Isle of Man as the airwaves of Radio Caroline North became the epicentre of 60's pop culture, writes Jehan Ashmore.

The famous pirate radio station of Radio Caroline North, was the brainchild of enigmatic Irishman Ronan O'Rahilly, who based his defiant operation on board M.V. Caroline which anchored three miles offshore of Ramsey on the north-east of the island.

Radio Caroline's southern counterpart anchored in the English Channel, together they where a reaction to the BBC's staid monopoly of the airwaves and avoided UK government control by anchoring outside territorial waters.

A musical kaleidoscope transitted The Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Beach Boys and countless more hits. Not only were thousands of Manx teenagers enjoying the sounds that epitomised the music youth of that era but to the millions of young people in the UK and Ireland.

Of the two stations, Radio Caroline North was the more successful. Employing professional DJ's from the UK but also from the USA, Canada and Australia who released the lastest pop-releases and chart-hit successes. Added to this heady mix of music were very popular DJ's whose exuberant attitude defied the powers of the establishment.

The arrival of such an enterprise led to the Ramsey Steamship Company acting as the ships's agents, which involved tenders supplying provisions and ferrying personnel back and forth to the small port. Afloat.ie profiled Ramsey in a report during May.

A fine model of one of their former general cargo-ships, Ben Varrey is on display in the Ramsey Heritage Centre and is where a wealth of history is to be found including this nautical nugget of information.

Only last year the Ramsey Steamship Co. ceased trading, having begun operations 101 years ago.

The company's second general-cargo, Ben Maye was chartered for a Lockout 1913 centenary event by re-enacting a voyage as the S.S. Hare which brought vital food-supplies to Dublin from Liverpool.

 

Published in Coastal Notes
Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

Email The Author

Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

We've got a favour to ask

More people are reading Afloat.ie than ever thanks to the power of the internet but we're in stormy seas because advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. Unlike many news sites, we haven’t put up a paywall because we want to keep our marine journalism open.

Afloat.ie is Ireland's only full–time marine journalism team and it takes time, money and hard work to produce our content.

So you can see why we need to ask for your help.

If everyone chipped in, we can enhance our coverage and our future would be more secure. You can help us through a small donation. Thank you.

Direct Donation to Afloat button

Coastal Notes Coastal Notes covers a broad spectrum of stories, events and developments in which some can be quirky and local in nature, while other stories are of national importance and are on-going, but whatever they are about, they need to be told.

Stories can be diverse and they can be influential, albeit some are more subtle than others in nature, while other events can be immediately felt. No more so felt, is firstly to those living along the coastal rim and rural isolated communities. Here the impact poses is increased to those directly linked with the sea, where daily lives are made from earning an income ashore and within coastal waters.

The topics in Coastal Notes can also be about the rare finding of sea-life creatures, a historic shipwreck lost to the passage of time and which has yet many a secret to tell. A trawler's net caught hauling more than fish but cannon balls dating to the Napoleonic era.

Also focusing the attention of Coastal Notes, are the maritime museums which are of national importance to maintaining access and knowledge of historical exhibits for future generations.

Equally to keep an eye on the present day, with activities of existing and planned projects in the pipeline from the wind and wave renewables sector and those of the energy exploration industry.

In addition Coastal Notes has many more angles to cover, be it the weekend boat leisure user taking a sedate cruise off a long straight beach on the coast beach and making a friend with a feathered companion along the way.

In complete contrast is to those who harvest the sea, using small boats based in harbours where infrastructure and safety poses an issue, before they set off to ply their trade at the foot of our highest sea cliffs along the rugged wild western seaboard.

It's all there, as Coastal Notes tells the stories that are arguably as varied to the environment from which they came from and indeed which shape people's interaction with the surrounding environment that is the natural world and our relationship with the sea.

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

dbsc mainbutton
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

Featured Webcams

Featured Associations

ISA sidebutton
ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Events

tokyo sidebutton
sovscup sidebutton
vdlr sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton
viking sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
mansfield sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
sellingboat sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating