NBC RADIO ST VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES ::107.5 AND 90.7FM
Radio in St.Vincent and the Grenadines started as a private enterprise, operated from the Kingstown residence of Mr. Weston Lewis, an Amateur (Ham) Radio Operator - VP2SA, who chose to start broadcasting in the early 1950s.
His broadcast continued until 1957 when St.Vincent signed onto the Windward Islands Broadcasting Service - WIBS, which began in neighboring Grenada in 1954. WIBS was a short-wave radio network that linked the four Windward Islands (St.Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada, Dominica and St. Lucia) by short-wave transmitters for special programming and News following which each Island transmitted its own local programming.
When this system was dismantled, the government of St.Vincent and the Grenadines took full responsibility for radio and established Radio St.Vincent and the Grenadines. With this move came the setting up of new studios and facilities at Richmond Hill, in the capital Kingstown in May 1977. This replaced the outdated WIBS equipment and moved the staff from an ‘under the steps studio’ of the then Labour Department Building to a more comfortable environment.
NBC Radio St.Vincent and the Grenadines, still known to many older listeners as WIBS, transmited on 705 Kilo-Hertz in the Medium Wave Broadcast Band. The main studios were linked to the transmitting site, located at Brighton on the South Eastern coastline, by Studio to Transmitter Link (STL). The STL utilized the commercial FM band which allows our audience to listen to NBC Radio St. Vincent and the Grenadines' programming on 88.7 FM. A relay station was subsequently added which transmits on 107.3 FM.
The transformation from WIBS to NBC did not occur as smoothly as has been described. Dominica and St. Lucia had earlier expressed dissatisfaction with the volume of information about their islands that was being aired on the network as compared to their financial input. Eventually Dominica pulled out and the service collapsed. St.Vincent and the Grenadines which only had a relay station in the network was not prepared for the collapse of the system unlike Grenada, where the main system was based, and Dominica who initiated the pullout.
* "Before commencing broadcast on Jan 1, 1971, we waited as usual for the station identification signal, which was, relayed from Network Headquarters in Grenada - It never came." (Claude Theobalds)
On consultation with the political directorates the officers at the station were instructed to commence local programming. Then came the establishment of Radio St. Vincent on January 3rd 1972.
The Management Structure also underwent transformation as well. In the initial stages of WIBS, the staff was very small and many of the workers performed multiple roles. At WIBS, there were only two officers, a Programme Assistant and a Technical Assistant. They performed the roles of Continuity Announcers and were also News Reporters and News-Presenters. These persons were all members of the Government Civil Service and were responsible to the Permanent Secretary or his/her subordinate within the Information Ministry through the General Manager. This model carried over into Radio St.Vincent and the Grenadines up until July 1986.
Mass Media in the Caribbean by 1986 continued to evolve and changes in the modus operandi of many Caribbean radio establishments were taking place. In St.Vincent, the government of Prime Minister - Sir James Mitchell decided to remove the station from under the direct supervision of the government’s Information Ministry.
On April 16th 1986, legislation was enacted to set up a statutory board, under the name National Broadcasting Corporation - NBC, to run the affairs of the Radio Station and for its name to be changed. On July 1st, 1986 what was initially WIBS, then Radio St.Vincent and the Grenadines - RSVG, became known as NBC Radio St.Vincent and the Grenadines.
In January of 2002, NBC RADIO, started the process of changing its transmission to the FM Band. We now broadcast on 107.5 and 90.7 FM.705AM has been taken off the Air,However 700AM Relayed the programming from the FM band until Late 2010 when it was taken off the air due to severe lightning damage.
On March 29th 2011 the National Broadcasting Corporation held a Media Launch to announce the events taking place as part of the 25th anniversary Celebrations,these events began in May with a Wellness walk with many events to follow later this year year.
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