It is the same with any addiction. Just a small measure to start with. You know you can control it - you know you can stop any time. But a bigger fix is needed and then - you are hooked.
So it has happened with CHBN's marathon live broadcasts. A modest 35 hours at first, to commemorate the founding of Truro Hospital Radio. Next came 50 hours - marking the 50th anniversary of the Royal Cornwall Hospital at Treliske. But this was not enough. Now that the NHS has been with us for 70 years, a continuous live broadcast of 70 hours is the only way to satisfy the craving and mark this important milestone.
Conceived during World War II, Britain's National Health Service came into being on 5th July 1948. So it is fitting that at 19.48 (or 12 minutes to 8 pm if you want it in old money) on 5th July 2018, CHBN will be broadcasting live from the reception area of Trelawney Wing, Royal Cornwall Hospital, for an unbroken 70 hours.
The first 45 hours will feature a number of CHBN presenters who will be entertaining listeners through the day and night. Many of these hours already have live presenters scheduled in the weekly programme. The overnight slots will be filled by those volunteers who feel they can undertake to keep awake during the small hours. On Saturday, July 7th during the afternoon, Jason Moyle - Presenter and Scheduling & Production Co-ordinator - will start a solo live broadcast for the last 25 hours.
As always, music will be important, and the occasion gives the presenters the chance to feature popular music from each of the seven decades. But in particular, the Station is keen to have many interviews with the 'people' side of the hospital: the medical and ancillary personnel; the patients and their visitors and the volunteers. We all need the NHS at some point in our life - even if it is only when we enter it and leave it - and there are many stories to be told. Most of all, the presenters will be on the lookout for the more senior members of the older generation. If anyone has memories of the late 1940s/early 1950s, it would be interesting to hear their 'then and now' reflections.
The architects of the NHS could never have imagined the changes in illnesses and medical conditions and procedures; nor in the new technical and diagnostic equipment and, perhaps most important, the nation's demographic. This milestone anniversary is an appropriate moment to look back and also to consider the future of an organisation which faces many challenges.
For CHBN, 2018 is especially significant. This Autumn our Ofcom licence must be renewed. With this special broadcast, CHBN Community Radio CIC (full title) is hoping to attract sponsorship and donations to enable us to continue and expand our service in the hospital and the surrounding area.
We are grateful to Mothercare for their offer of sponsorship - most appropriate given their connection with babies. If other businesses and individuals would like to help, we would ask them to visit www.chbnradio.org