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Paris-based FIP FM disappears from Brighton airwaves for second time
Listeners are FIP-ing out after a much-loved radio station disappeared from the airwaves for the second time.
Paris-based FIP FM mysteriously emerged in certain parts of Brighton in 2001, bemusing and delighting listeners with its eclectic mix of musical genres.
Mystery has always surrounded the person who streamed FIP in Brighton, but people believe it was a local man who became so smitten with the station on holiday that he installed a transmitter in his attic in Hanover.
Through his antenna, he brought untold musical pleasure to the ears of a diverse range of listeners, including shopkeepers, politicians and housewives.
But in 2007 listeners were outraged when transmission stopped for a couple of months after the Office of Communications (Ofcom) pulled the plug and confiscated the broadcasting equipment, following a complaint the law was being broken.
Then earlier this month, listeners were again left bitterly disappointed when the station disappeared for a second time.
Jean Clack has tuned into the radio station for nine years.
She said: “I can’t believe the radio station has gone again. This is another example of rules and regulations getting in the way of good fun. No harmwas being done to anyone.
“I loved the variety of music played and have not found anything similar to listen to.”
Nick Packham, 39, from Hove said: “I would be very disappointed if it were to go for good.
“Brighton and Hove needs a good radio station – the current ones are all ego driven DJs playing the same music and endless adverts.
“That's the difference that FIP makes. There’s a wide mix of music from jazz to hiphop, to Latin to classical and minimal interruptions.
“The ‘Fipettes’ provide local information and traffic updates ad hoc and of course there’s also the news at ten minutes to the hour.
“It’s just a cool station to listen to and very Brighton.
“I’ve been a listener and a fan since 2005 when I first discovered it. I don’t speak French but the music is the most important part for me.”
Ofcom is not aware of any raids, which means the transmitter may have decided to call time on transmission, or his equipment could have been damaged.
A spokeswoman for Ofcom said: “Ofcom investigates and takes enforcement action against illegal broadcasters.
“Pirate radio has interfered with aircraft instrument landing systems, aeronautical radio communications and those of the emergency services.
“Such interference has direct implications for the safety of life.
“These stations often also swamp the reception of authorised broadcast stations in the immediate vicinity of the transmitter.”
FIP can still be listened to at radiofrance.fr/chaines/fip/direct.
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