THEY say the show must go on — and that is exactly what local radio station Bolton FM is doing despite not being able to use their studio.

The station usually operates from premises at Bolton Market on Ashburner Street.

But the current lockdown means the volunteer presenters at the community station have had to use their ingenuity, cobbling together equipment and broadcasting programmes from their own homes instead.

Bolton FM chairman Andrew Dickson is proud of the achievement.

He said: "The station has been closed but with the help of technology and a lot of hard work and enthusiasm we are managing to broadcast more or less a full program of shows and including the latest government, council and NHS advice."

The station's business manager, Keith Harris says they are now becoming so adept with the new set-up that they are even managing to broadcast some programmes live.

"We've purchased some software so we've got remote working and now we're at the stage where at least two programmes a day will go out live," he said, adding that, anticipating a lockdown, the station had planned for it.

"The worst case scenario was that we played non-stop music but then the technical people that we have worked out that we could do things in a different way. By Friday we had normal programmes going out.

"We have had some fantastic reactions from listeners."

The volunteers, like Drivetime presenter Danny Simm, pictured above, are determined to do all they can to help support the frontline workers during the current crisis.

They have already recorded messages of support from local dignitaries, broadcast just before the Clap for Carers last week and at 6pm tonight they are dedicating a whole programme, called Community Corner NHS Special, to NHS and key workers where people can send in messages and record requests. The dedication line can be reached at 0345 3110 965.

Conscious that many people, of all faiths, are missing gathering together for worship, for the last two weeks the station has also been broadcasting Prayers for Bolton from 11am on Sunday mornings, hosted by Sue Snowden and Methodist minister Rev Ian Smart.

This Sunday Corpus Christi RC Church priest Father Alf Robello, will be speaking on 96.5 Bolton FM.

Mr Smart said: "It is in times of crisis when we see people standing together and the British spirit coming to the fore.

"Here in Bolton, we can see a sense of community developing because of the common goal of getting through these awful times.

"Many people ordinarily attend a religious service of one kind or another and in times of crisis others, who might not be normally that religious, turn to religion in search of some kind of comfort and solace.

"With all places of worship closed there will be a real gap in some people’s lives and for that reason local radio station we are broadcasting a Sunday service."

You can tune in at 96.5 Bolton FM, visit the website at, or use a smart speaker.