The Hospital Radio Awards 2012….. 24 hours on

This time yesterday on the 31st of March 2012, in a hotel in Northampton, the winners of the Hospital Broadcasting Association Awards 2012 were announced.

From the people or programmes shortlisted in each of the 8 categories, a bronze, silver and gold winner was announced as well the special John Whitney Award and the HBA Volunteer of the Year. Community RA+Edio was keeping a keen eye on the proceedings and talking to some of the evenings attendees so we thought we’d let you know some of our top feedback so far from the evening.

Hospital Radio Plymouth was one of the biggest winners of the evening. Not only did they win the big one- station of the year, but Sophie Neville from the station won the silver award for Best Female Presenter. Sophie’s been working up to the award for a few years now – she told us she had been presenting since October 2008. But even though a bit of celebration was more than called for, someone has to keep the boat afloat. We learned that there was no champagne drinking in the studio on the nightshift and a day later, the mystery nightshift presenter is still awaiting for a celebratory toast!

We also talked to Neil Wilkes from Coventry Hospital Radio. He won the silver award for Best Newcomer. He presents a show that celebrates the local region alongside a mixed bag of music. We asked him how he was continuing the celebrations the morning after the night before to which he replied that he was spending the day relaxing and basking in the win.

Celebration through relaxation might be trend amongst hospital radio volunteers. Ian Pinnell produced a package for bronze winning station of the year, Radio Cherwell. His way of celebrating? Kitchen Nightmares USA. To be fair to him, he had a challenging evening- he was broadcasting the awards show live from Radio Cherwell from 8-11pm.

Other big winners of the night included Harlow Hospital Radio who picked up 2 awards- gold for best station promotion, and Mark Ranger from the station picked up a bronze best newcomer award. Radio Redhill also scooped 2 prizes- a silver award for the ‘South of England Show’ in the Special Event category, and another silver for Best Speech Package- ‘Rose Planting At Hever Castle’.

The ceremony was presented by Sean Dunderdale who is director of programming for the Lincs FM group as well as being press officer for the HBA. But the host also became an award recipient as he picked up an award for Outstanding Contribution. Although there are a few rumours floating out there on twitter that Sean’s announcement of the award on the site was an April Fool, it is pretty apparent that the award is genuine (well if we’re being technical, it would have been too early for an April Fool anyway- doesn’t count on March 31st surely!). Sean said today that it was the biggest surprise of his life but the overwhelming response to it on #hba2012 was that it was a well deserved award.

Unfortunately not everyone can be a winner. Last week we interviewed Mandy Morrow about her nomination in the best female category but she didn’t quite make it to the top 3. But when we spoke to Mandy she seemed to be looking on the bright side – she made the point that Alexandra Burke got sent home the year before she won X factor!

‘Rhodders’ from Hospital Radio Reading was also one of the not so lucky ones as he missed out on best male presenter. He’s looking on the bright side too – as he told us, he’s going to keep trying and is already thinking about his entry for next year.

And he’s not the only one- people are already talking about the HBA awards 2013 which will be held in Blackpool. Harlow hospital radio are already foreseeing a fight for the best newcomer award.

We’re hoping to chat to some of last night’s winners in more depth over the coming weeks so watch this space.

And if you were a winner, runner-up, just got piped to the post, or simply a happy member of the audience then tell us about your night at the awards. Click here to find out how you can tell us your stories.

For the full list of all the winners in all the categories, click here.

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