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…In Redbridge!

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Community Radio Comes to Redbridge

ELR Studio.jpgEvery morning on our way to work or to drop off the kids we turn on the radio to put that extra pep in our step. It’s no secret that music helps us get through the day – but the radio has those extra perks; from traffic reports ensuring you aren’t late to incredible DJ’s and presenters giving us those laughs we need, especially in the morning. There are a range of different stations with something to suit everyone.

East London Radio is an online radio station, run entirely by volunteers from East London with an emphasis on talk radio and giving a voice, and radio experience/training to local people. They’ll be four years old in 2017 and, having had studio bases in four other boroughs of East London, they’ve now come to Redbridge! Their local base is in the beautiful location of The Cranbrook Centre in Valentines Park.

East London Radio (ELR) wants to give Redbridge a voice, without party politics or religion, a way to share the news of what’s really happening in our area. They are seeking major local sponsors and advertisers to help fund the community project, as well as giving local people the chance to volunteer a few hours week to learn and make some great local radio.

We managed to have a sit down with the Managing Director of ELR, Ian Chambers, for more information on this great idea.

  • What inspires ELR?

East London Radio is a social enterprise set up in 2013 to give a voice to all East Londoners, to positively promote the area and give volunteers training to help their employability, including wishing to pursue a media career. A team of over 70 volunteers currently run the station.

  • What makes you unique from any other radio station

We have a focus on talk radio, so that we can promote the amazing things happening across the area, which no-one else is talking about in the media. We are working on improving the whole image of the area, which until now has typically been too negative in mainstream media.

  • What sort of training is provided?

We offer whatever training people need to make radio shows on East London, which can include technical, planning, communication skills, team working, voice coaching and much more. Through partners we work with groups from East London schools to make radio shows, and have introduced over 1,000 children to making radio so far.

  • What other boroughs are you set up in?

We currently have studios in Waltham Forest, Newham and Tower Hamlets, and previously were in Hackney. We are excited to be launching in Redbridge in 2017.

  • Do you play any music, if so what genres?

Overall, we aim to appeal to a broad range of East Londoners. We try to make our music selections different to what can be heard elsewhere, and have built up big followings for particular shows, such as a Drum n Bass show which is regularly in the Top 20 of such shows worldwide, Kizomba shows and Vintage music shows. If anyone wants to suggest an unusual music format needing an audience, we’re happy to see if it would work.

  • Can you tell us how many presenters you have / a little bit about your presenters?

We have a team of over 70 volunteers, from all backgrounds and a wide range of ages, from our minimum age of 18 to those aged in their 70’s. Everyone is welcome. Some of our volunteers have moved onto employment, including placements with the BBC and radio production companies. One has moved on to a show on Virgin Radio.

  • Plans for the future?

We want to continue to grow and spread across East London, and are always happy to work with local organisations and businesses in terms of joint activities, sponsorship and advertising. We want to make East London Radio the number one media choice by and for East Londoners

  • Any other information you have about the radio station that you may feel is useful?

For the past year or so, we have had a good working relationship with Enterprise Desk in Redbridge Library, building a very popular business show.  To start at our new Redbridge base, we need a small team of volunteers to make radio once everyelr-logo week or so.

If this sounds of interest, they’d love to hear from you.

If you’d like to find out more about the various roles available for volunteers – technical, presenting, reporting, behind the scenes work, just drop an email to Please include that it’s the Ilford studio you’d like to volunteer at, and that you heard about it here.

And give them a listen – and via free iPhone and Android apps



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Crunching Numbers

Maths is a huge part of our lives, there’s no question about that! It is an essential skill that we are taught from a young age; from telling the time to counting our change.

Maths was introduced to me using grapes of all things. Simple sums were placed in front of me; my parents asking me to count how many grapes would be left if they ate a couple. Looking back, it was a great technique to hook a child who seemed to love grapes, that much was for sure (fruits are a great incentive!). We all use tricks to help encourage learning and with mathematics being such a huge subject with lots to learn, it’s the perfect topic to mix things up on – it doesn’t have to be mundane, as the stereotype seems to dictate it must be. Some of my favourite teachers were my maths teachers, since they would always find things for us to do; crafting 3D shapes to put our angle knowledge to the test or teaching us ratios by using bars of chocolate.

Growing up, I found myself inspired by a true TV maths-superstar; Carol Vordeman. It was during Countdown (which I was obsessed with and still find myself drawn to), during the maths challenges where I would pull out my pen and paper and begin trying to solve the equation; attempting to get as close to the target number as possible. She would come up with a solution within a matter of seconds, and that was something that I aspired to do. Using her books and CDs coached me through my GCSEs. Maths has always found its way into my other subjects too, no matter what route I went with education – maths always seems to be there. I found it extremely difficult and challenging but that only made me respect those who were able to solve equations in mere seconds even more.

Throughout my education, from primary school all the way to university, I have been exposed to maths and everything it has to offer. There’s something extremely satisfying about finding your way through a labyrinth of equations and finally reaching that golden answer. When I say golden, I mean it. The sensation was as though you had really struck gold; obtaining something so valuable which had made all of your efforts and perils worth it. If you know someone who is incredible at maths, make sure you show them your respect – it’s well deuntitled-1-3served!

Now it’s time to show off your children’s maths skills and help them gain that very respect from their friends, family and competitors. Redbridge Central Library is hosting its first
numeracy challenge – Infinity 2017, where you can participate and use your maths skills to win prizes. There are two age groups, 9-10 years and 11-12 years, so get out your abacus and get involved! This is your chance to be a math-superstar. Parents – please be sure to book now to register your child’s place so they can compete for this incredible award. For more information, visit our Eventbrite pages:


Post Author: Priya Devandran


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A New Reality

Virtual Reality is taking the world by storm. In the past it was only seen in sci-fi movies. Now this piece of sci-fi technology is becoming a reality and more accessible to everyone. It gives you the ability to live your dreams, explore beyond the realms of your imagination and all from the comfort of your own home; launch yourself into the deep blue sea to or into space, there are no limits.

Technology experts believe that Virtual Reality will integrate into our lives sooner than we know it; with virtual conferences and offices already being available to use, connecting cities and companies all over the world. There is no doubt that this revolutionary piece of technology is going to impact our lives in a huge way.

Virtual reality is even coming to homes and for leisure and sport too, with companies such as Sony producing their own Virtual Reality headsets for the PlayStation, and before that was the Oculus Rift revolutionising the games market when they made their debut at the famous E3 conference. Both are now sold by popular retailers! Famous sportspeople such as Ronnie O’Sullivan have been seen using Virtual Reality – becoming so engrossed that he even tried to placworkshope his arm on a non-existent snooker table and ended up falling over! It just goes to show how incredibly life-like this technology has become, and how far technology has developed over the years.

Fullwell Cross Library and Wanstead Library are hosting a great event which can prepare your children for the joys of Virtual Reality with a Make and experience Virtual Reality – hosted by InspireNshare. During this event an accessible talk on Virtual Reality will be given and Virtual Reality trips will be taken, along with so much more!

Martin King, part of InspireNshare has been involved in technology since the 1970s and was first involved in Virtual Reality specifically in 1992. But this, the era of technology, is the most exciting time he has ever known. He has been actively holding open accessible events about VR for colleges and the general public since January 2015. Martin’s passion for the new technologies that have become available have inspired him to get further involved with these events to share his excitement as well as inspire the future generation. Virtual Reality has become simple, friendly, accessible and cost effective, something he calls “Citizen tech“.

Being involved in Virtual Reality has brought about a range of experiences to many different people’s lives and has brought out some great reactions too. Martin draws on the past and explained how he’s seen very controlled businessmen become deeply immersed in the experience, so much so that they had begun standing up from the their chair, pointing and talking to things that only they can see and hear.

Martin has introduced us to the ‘The VR selfie’ which is the strangest selfie yet – seeing yourselves in-situ in Virtual Reality is something new and really messes with your senses. One of his visitors captured the feeling of the VR selfie by describing it as like “an out of body experience”.  Some people prefer Virtual Reality soothing applications such as Dolphin encounter on the Great Barrier Reef but most people seem to want Virtual Reality thrill, adrenaline and adventure, such as ski jumping, wing-suit flying, or climbing the north face of the Eiger. His current favourite VR app is called “Face Your Fears” where a giant robot grabs you and climbs to the top of a skyscraper. It really goes to show anything is possible!workshop

This up and coming workshop will be held on Thursday 16 February and will allow you and your children to make your own Virtual Reality viewers and media, as well as taking trips from the Virtual Reality travel agency. It is bound to be an incredible learning experience filled with fun and brand new technology. Embrace the future and make sure you book your ticket in advance!

Wanstead Library: Book by clicking HERE

Fullwell Cross Library: Book by clicking HERE


 Post Author: Priya Devandran