A GLASGOW-based radio station – whose presenters are either blind or partially-sighted – is to become available to listeners throughout the UK and Europe – courtesy of a Sky TV channel.
From Tuesday, Insight Radio becomes available on Sky channel 0188. The development is the latest episode in the station’s remarkable rise.
Three years ago, it was called VIP On Air (‘VIP’ standing for Visually-Impaired People) and was funded by the RNIB and Glasgow City Council. It initially operated as as a community radio station – broadcasting locally on 101FM.
It re-launched as Insight at the beginning of the year, at the same time winning a coveted Sony award – the ‘Oscars’ of the UK radio industry – for Best Internet Programme.
Lots of blind or partially-sighted people subscribe to Sky, partly because of the audio descriptions available. Also, most blind or partially-sighted people have an element of vision.
The station’s review of the morning newspapers is arguably the most comprehensive of any radio station: large chunks of the day’s press are simply read out. Its editorial is obviously informed by what it is like to be blind or visually-impaired.
The appearance of the station on the Sky platform has been overseen by Ross Macfayden, appointed last summer by the RNIB as radio services manager, who was previously director of programmes at Radio Clyde.