Rugby radio mast site book raises thousands for air ambulance

Malcolm Hancock with his book The History of Rugby Radio Station, the proceeds of which will go to Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance NNL-170322-125738001
Malcolm Hancock with his book The History of Rugby Radio Station, the proceeds of which will go to Warwickshire and Northamptonshire Air Ambulance NNL-170322-125738001

A book on the history of the old radio mast station has raised more than £2,000 for the air ambulance.

The History of Rugby Radio Station, published by the site’s housing developers Urban&Civic, was written by historian and former station manager Malcolm Hancock.

Malcolm’s work earned him a nomination for Citizen of the Year at Rugby FM’s 2017 Pride of Rugby Awards, given to Joanne Finney on Friday.

“I am so very pleased to hear that sales of my book on the History of Rugby Radio Station are going so well,” he said.

“The iconic ‘we are nearly home’ 820ft high masts will now not be forgotten.

“I am also thrilled that, with the help of Urban&Civic, all the proceeds of the book are going to another worthy endeavour, the Warwickshire & Northamptonshire Air Ambulance.

“I was surprised and honoured to be nominated as Rugby Citizen of the Year but, I am sure, that other locals were much more deserving and congratulate Joanne Finney on her win.”

With all monies raised from the sales of the history book donated to the air ambulance, Malcolm has enabled the charity to take on another life-saving mission.

The air ambulance’s senior fundraising manager Jo Payne said: “I am thrilled to see the book has generated so much interest in the history of Rugby Radio Station, such an iconic feature and represents so much to all of us that live (and fly) in the area.

“We are so pleased that the proceeds from the sale of the book have been donated to keeping our team saving lives by road and air across the region and would like to thank everyone involved.”

The semi autobiographical memoir recounts Malcolm’s 38 years of experience working at the site as well as the ground-breaking first transmission to Houlton, USA in 1927, stories about NASA, Concorde, Messages to Mars, and the life-saving work of the station during WW2 and the Cold War.

Urban&Civic’s Johanne Thomas said: “We know from working with the local community over the past couple of years, that people were very fond of the radio masts and the station and Malcolm has been instrumental in all that we have done to ensure that the history of the radio station lives on into the future of Houlton.

“It is his work that helped us name the place, Houlton, after the 1927 broadcast and his content that helped us produce the rugbyradiostation.co.uk website.

“Publishing his book was our thank you to him and I am thrilled that it has been so popular.”