UWE Bristol students mark 30 years of UK's first women's radio station with special broadcast

Media Relations Team, 08 March 2022

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 Female radio presenter at Sound Women South West, recording live radio show.

History and media students from the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) have joined forces with Sound Women South West to celebrate the 30th anniversary of Fem FM, the UK’s first women’s radio station.

The station, set up in 1992, was created in Bristol by over 200 female volunteers, making history and launching the careers of many.

The project was fronted by Trish Caverly, then head community producer of Radio For The People (FTP) and Dr Caroline Mitchell, radio producer and media lecturer at South Bristol College (now UWE Bristol).

Thirty years later and inspired by UWE Bristol history student Libby Sharp, who wrote an article about Fem FM, the students have worked in collaboration with Sound Women South West to create a three-part documentary series.

And today, coinciding with International Women’s Day, the first episode of ‘The Story of Fem FM’ will be broadcast on 19 radio stations all over the UK.

UWE Bristol student Libby Sharp, said: “Fem FM aimed to challenge the male dominance on-air, redefine the female ‘housewife radio’ stereotype that existed in mainstream broadcasting, represent a rich diversity of women’s culture and create radio content that was relevant to women’s lives.”

Student Anna Dearden added: “It provided the opportunity for women of all backgrounds to gain experience in radio and broadcasting – chances that might otherwise be denied to young women. As students from History, Journalism, English and Media, we are beyond excited to immerse ourselves in Fem FM’s anniversary project.”

The ‘Story of Fem FM’ has been jointly produced and presented by Miranda Rae from Sound Women South West and will feature original archive content including interviews with the founders, Dr Caroline Mitchell and Trish Caverly.

Find details of where to listen live.

The students who helped produce this project, which was supported by the UWE Bristol Community Fund are: Libby Sharp, Edith Attridge, Imogen Lapsley, Lauren Corfield, Anna Dearden, Jennifer Summers, Sam Carey.

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