Trustees' Report and Annual Review 2007

Table of Contents

Back to Annual Reports homepage


Trustees' Report

The Trustees of Winchester Hospitals Radio are pleased to submit their report and accounts for the year 1st January to 31st December 2007.

Winchester Hospitals Radio (also known as “Winchester Hospital Radio”, “WHR”, and our on-air identity “Winchester Radio”) is a registered charity, governed by a constitution.

This Report and the attached Accounts have been produced in accordance with the guidance provided by the Charity Commission in its “Receipts and Payments Accounts Pack (CC16)”.

Charitable Objects

The object of the Association is relieving sickness, infirmity and old age by providing a local broadcasting service for hospitals, old peoples' homes and similar institutions in Winchester. The station currently serves the Royal Hampshire County Hospital (RHCH) via the Patientline bedside entertainment system.

Organisation

WHR is run entirely by a membership of volunteers, who pay an annual membership subscription and are not eligible for reimbursement of any out-of-pocket expenses. It is an unincorporated association governed by a constitution (last amended in November 2002) and managed by an Executive Committee (the Charity Trustees) who are elected annually by the membership.

Related Organisations

WHR is a member of the Hospital Broadcasting Association (HBA), the national charity that supports and promotes hospital broadcasting in the UK. Our members regularly attend the twice-yearly conferences organised by the HBA and the Regional Meetings hosted by various hospital radio stations in southern England.

WHR maintains a close working relationship with the Winchester and Eastleigh Healthcare NHS Trust (who manage the RHCH) and Patientline plc, the company that owns and runs the bedside entertainment system through which its programmes are delivered to patients.

Review of Activities and Achievements

Below is a brief summary of WHR's activities and achievements during 2007. Further information can be found in the informal "Annual Review", which starts on page 6.

Programming and Ward Visiting

During 2007, WHR continued to provide a radio service to the patients at the RHCH. The flagship programme is the “Sound Remedy”, a nightly programme made up of music requests collected from patients by our volunteers. Whenever WHR is not broadcasting live programmes, a music jukebox service broadcasts a carefully chosen selection of easy listening music.

The “Sound Remedy” programme format requires a team of volunteers who, in addition to presenting the programme, visit patients on the wards and, whenever possible, broadcast the first hour of the programme from one of the wards. Due to insufficient trained volunteers, the “Sound Remedy” has continued to be the only regular live programme to be broadcast. Additional programmes were, however, broadcast on Bank Holidays and throughout the Christmas and New Year period.

The way in which patients actively take part in the “Sound Remedy”, either by talking to presenters who are by their bedside, or by using the Patientline telephone system to call the studio, making requests for music and/or taking part in the “Brain Tickler” quiz, proves that our service is very well received. Patients regularly take the time to leave a message on our answerphone before being discharged from hospital, thanking us for keeping them entertained.

Behind-the-Scenes Support

Due to work commitments away from home for most weeks of the year, our Chief Engineer has been unable to dedicate as much time to supporting WHR as in previous years. Despite this, our Engineering team has spent many hours refurbishing the studios, eliminating a number of annoying problems. A concerted effort towards the end of the year, assisted by the newly-installed broadband internet connection, meant that the network of replacement computers for the Myriad automated audio playout system finished the year close to being ready to be installed.

During the year, the music on the Myriad audio playout system was subject to critical review, and a large number of tracks earmarked for removal and replacement. It is intended that the revised music database is commissioned at the same time as the new computers.

Special mention must be made of David Addis and Windsor Hurd. During 2007, David has worked-on the design of databases allowing WHR to collate music requests by patients and to generate playlists and running orders for the “Sound Remedy” programme. Windsor has spent many hours typing in patients’ music requests into David’s database.

Strategic Planning

Studio Location and Service Provision

Like many other NHS hospitals, the RHCH has faced an uncertain future. This uncertainty now appears to be coming an end. A new senior management team has produced a plan for the future of the hospital which involves it providing largely the same services as now, but from a site significantly reduced in size.

The Trustees met with the new Chairman and Chief Executive of the NHS Trust in late November and were informed that WHR’s current studio location was potentially at risk and a move to alternative facilities in the main hospital building was likely to be necessary. The Trustees are currently discussing WHR’s needs in terms of facilities with the NHS Trust’s project manager.

The Trustees’ informal proposal that WHR could provide a dedicated background music and public service announcement service to outpatients waiting rooms and similar areas throughout the RHCH was met with interest, and will be followed-up in 2008.

A trial service to a local residential nursing home has also been arranged. It is planned that a variant of the “Sound Remedy” programme will be produced on a monthly basis starting in February 2008, and delivered on two CDs. The staff at the nursing home will then use the CDs as part of their regular set of activities for the residents, encouraging them to play along with the interactive features in the programme – which have been developed in association with the home’s management team. This pilot scheme will be reviewed after 6 months.

Once the future studio location and timetable for moving has been agreed with the NHS Trust, the Trustees intend to revise the 5-Year Plan which they originally adopted in January 2004. This document sets out the Trustees' vision for the development of WHR and the services it provides.

Recruitment and training of volunteers

The Trustees' aim is to build upon the success of the current programming and visiting schedules, to recruit, induct and train more members to reduce the workload on our existing volunteers, and to work towards utilising our upgraded computer playout system to full effect by introducing a full range of programmes aimed specifically at the hospital audience.

Financial Performance

At the end of 2007, WHR had funds totalling just under 37,000, having raised 10,999 and spent 5,611 during the year.

Income

2007 was another good year as far as fundraising was concerned. Gross funds raised, at just over 7,000, was significantly higher than 2006, although fundraising costs were also higher. Net income from fundraising, at 4811, was 499 higher than in 2006.

During 2007, WHR made a net surplus of 2,285 (2006: 1,508) from selling CDs produced by volunteer Steven Wills and released on WHR's own record label. The increase was mainly due to a new double-CD release titled “The Day the TV Stood Still”. Steven's employer, Barclays Bank, match-fund specific fundraising efforts by their staff, and WHR has benefited to the tune of 526 during 2007. Finally, WHR received 94 from sales of previous CDs that Steven had released on his own "Codename Music" label in aid of WHR.

The Trustees would like to thank the John Lewis Partnership for opening the Longstock Park Water Garden in aid of WHR one Sunday in May. After newspaper advertising costs, the net income from this day was 1715.

Thanks are also due to the 1st Winchester Scout Group. Their sponsored archery event in December resulted in WHR receiving a donation of over 1000. A further amount is anticipated in 2008, once all the sponsorship money has been collected.

For the second year in succession, a WHR volunteer completed a sponsored tandem skydive in aid of WHR. This year it was the turn of Andrew Tyrrell, who raised 266, with a further amount in Gift Aid due from HM Revenue & Customs in 2008.

The annual "road show" outside broadcast and collection day at Sainsbury's supermarket at Badger Farm netted 564, virtually the same as last year. Gross income was down on 2006 but this was balanced by significantly lower costs due to John Beckett lending WHR his caravan to use as a base for the broadcast.

With income from the Supper Quiz drastically reduced in 2006 compared with previous years, and with volunteer effort being focussed on producing programmes, it was decided not to stage the event in 2007.

Expenditure

A tight control has been maintained on general expenditure during 2007.

With available volunteer effort focussed on programming, only essential repairs to equipment have been made. The audio mixing desks in both studios have been overhauled, with all of the knobs and switches replaced or cleaned. In addition, four new studio chairs have been purchased and a replacement set of microphone pre-amplifiers was purchased following a failure.

The increase in licence fees compared with 2006 is largely related to the purchase of a licence for the radio-mic used during our broadcasts from the wards. This was previously purchased bi-annually, with the licence last renewed in 2005. This year, the discounted two-year licences have been withdrawn, but advantage was taken of a discount for renewing the licence online.

Having exhausted efforts to obtain an internet connection via the NHS Trust’s local area network with access policies that met WHR’s needs, it was decided that it was necessary to install our own internet connection. Due to the lack of an existing BT telephone line, installation of such a line was also necessary. Ongoing costs will be in the order of 500 per year.

Six second-hand filing cabinets were purchased to enable the station’s administrative paperwork to be logically and securely stored. The decision was also taken to replace the security locks in the studio complex. These were last replaced in 1998 and, with a number of keys remaining in the possession of ex-volunteers, it was felt prudent to ensure that the studios were secure.

Financial Management and Reserves Policies

WHR has a Financial Management Policy which defines the controls to be implemented to ensure that the Association’s assets are secure. This policy meets all the requirements of the Charities Act 1993 and the Charity Commission guidelines “Internal Financial Controls for Charities (CC8)”.

The Association has been slowly building up a reserve for an inevitable move of studios at some point in the future. As noted under “Strategic Planning” above, it appears that a move from our current studios (in a time-expired wooden building alongside the Orthodontics Dept.) in the immediate short-term future is highly likely. The move to the present site from St. Paul's Hospital, in 1992, cost WHR approximately 50,000. A future move is likely to cost significantly more than this.

Reserves are held in fixed-term bonds so as to give a good rate of return without any exposure to the stock market.

Major Risks

At the time of writing, there is a small possibility that the NHS Trust will not provide alternative accommodation to WHR when it sells the land on which our studios are currently situated. The Trustees are in discussion with the NHS Trust regarding the relocation and believe that, whilst any new facilities available to WHR will likely be smaller than our current facilities, it is very unlikely that no accommodation will be available.

WHR's service is distributed to patients by the bedside entertainment system run by Patientline plc. This company is currently in a very difficult financial position.

The Trustees consider that there is a real risk that Patientline may be forced into liquidation. This would mean that WHR would be unable to deliver its service to patients until a replacement system was in place. There are a number of alternative technologies that could be deployed to distribute our service to patients, but they would all take a number of months to install and cost a significant amount of money.

The Trustees have contacted the NHS Trust regarding their contingency plans to cover this eventuality. We understand that the NHS Trust management believe that it is important that a bedside entertainment system is available at the RHCH, and that they have the option to purchase the Patientline equipment installed at the RHCH if Patientline are unable or unwilling to provide a service.

The Trustees are monitoring developments closely and intend to move quickly to put in place appropriate contingency plans once the situation is clearer.

Charity Trustees

Chairman Tony Knight
Vice-Chairman Steve Feeney
Treasurer Nigel Dallard
Station Manager Anna O'Brien (until 26 March 2007)
  Ian Kemp (from 26 March 2007)
Programme Controller Paul Blitz (until 26 March 2007)
  Anna O'Brien (from 26 March 2007)
Fundraising Manager Ian Kemp (until 26 March 2007)
  Ian Kemp (acting)(from 26 March 2007)
Chief Engineer Paul Blitz (acting)(until 26 March 2007)
  Paul Blitz (from 26 March 2007)

Charity Number

290553

Principal Address

Mailpoint MP66
Royal Hampshire County Hospital
Romsey Road
Winchester
Hampshire
SO22 5DG

Bankers

National Westminster Bank plc
Winchester Old Bank
105 High Street
Winchester
Hampshire
SO23 9AW
Standard Life Bank Ltd
Caledonian Exchange
19A Canning Street
Edinburgh
EH3 8EG

Independent Examiner

J. A. Poulter FCA ATII
Rothman Pantall and Co.
Avebury House
6 St. Peter Street
Winchester
Hampshire
SO23 8BN

Signed on behalf of the Trustees,

Tony Knight's signatureSteve Feeney's signature
Tony Knight
Chairman
13th March 2008
Steve Feeney
Vice-Chairman
13th March 2008

Back to Table of Contents Continue to Annual Review