Doug Mills, Freemason; Ellie Jackson, Harrogate Hospital Radio; John Birkenshaw, Freemason; Mark Oldfield, Harrogate Hospital Radio; Nigel Glew, Freemason; and Michael Baxter, Freemason
Harrogate & Claro Freemasons have tuned into the needs of Harrogate Hospital Radio by securing them a £3,000 donation to help purchase hundreds of internet radios.

Last year, Harrogate Hospital NHS Trust’s strategic decision not to renew its contract with the provider of the bedside-entertainment system had a massive impact on the charity broadcaster.

As a result of the loss of facility, the only way patients can now listen to the in-house radio station is on smartphones and tablets via the internet or an app.

Harrogate Hospital Radio, which first took to the airwaves in October 1977, has had to radically rethink the way it provides its service to patients and is now looking at broadcasting its services across the wards and public areas through wi-fi radios.

The charity was faced with a dilemma as the cost to achieve this was far outside its budget.

However, John Birkenshaw, Harrogate & Claro Lodge charity steward, became aware of the situation and made an application to the Freemasons Province of Yorkshire West Riding’s Provincial Grand Master’s Fund, to help purchase sufficient radios for patients within the hospital.

Mark Oldfield, Harrogate Hospital Radio Chairman, said:

“We are absolutely thrilled to pieces. This generous grant of £3,000 could not have come at a better time. We would like to pass on our thanks to all the Freemasons involved in this great act of kindness.

“They have certainly tuned into our needs and the needs of our listeners, namely patients within Harrogate District Hospital.”

Darren Bush, the Worshipful Master of Harrogate & Claro Lodge, said:

“This is exactly the type of local charity that we, as Masons in Harrogate, want to support.

“The purchase of these radios will provide great comfort and support to patients in hospital on their road to recovery and means Harrogate Hospital Radio can continue providing the service it has done for more than 40 years.”