I received a polite email from the English desk of RRI to QSL my reception of Radio Timișoara on 630 kHz. They thanked me for my report and they will mention it in the upcoming Listener’s Corner on RRI. Funny detail: the English desk is very clear in communicating that firstname.lastname@example.org should be the only address to be used, but their replies still seem to come from different addresses. Anyway: email@example.com it is for you!
Like other stations in Romania (see my post on Marosvásárhelyi Rádió) Radio Timișoara has a rich history. Timișoara is most important city in the region called Banat, which is currently split between Hungary, Romania and Serbia. The name itself comes from the original Hungarian name Temesvár, which means “castle on the river Temes”.
As early as 1930 there were plans to create a “Radio Timișoara”. These plans were approved in 1939, but WWII thwarted execution. After the war the first programs began to be broadcast from Timișoara in 1952. In 1956 regular broadcast in Serbian and German language began, each with a 20 minute program. Censorship from Bucharest increased over the years, but Radio Timișoara managed to stay “out of sight” until Ceaușescu ordered the closure of all regional radio stations to facilitate censorship from Bucharest in 1985 .
Personally I vividly remembered Timișoara as the city where the Romanian Revolution started in December 1989 (I was 17 years old at the time). This led to the demise of the Ceaușescu regime. Soon after the revolution Radio Timișoara resumed broadcasts, and the Hungarian language was added to the program in addition to German and Serbian. Today they feature broadcasts in Czech, Slovak, Ukrainian, Romani and Bulgarian as well.
The English desk of Radio Romania was so kind to send me a QSL for my reception of Marosvásárhelyi Rádió on1323 kHz. And even seem to promise a real QSL, so let’s see… I heard them starting their daily transmission with interval signals on chimes or metallophone. This was followed by the Romanian National Anthem at 03:54 h UTC.
Marosvásárhelyi Rádió is a regional radio station broadcasting from Târgu Mureș, located on the river with the same name. Târgu Mureș means “Marketplace at the river Mureș”. The river is called Maros in Hungarian, and vásárhelyi is Hungarian for marketplace.
For a long time the city was part of the Austro-Hungarian empire. All the people living there were Hungarian. But after the First World War the victors wanted to reduce the influence of the empire, and it was agreed that Târgu Mureș should be part of Romania. After WWII the policies of the communist regime under dictator Ceaușescu resulted in the Hungarian speaking population being reduced to a minority (just above 40% these days).
Marosvásárhelyi Rádió started in 1958 with a daily broadcast of 30 minutes in Romanian and 15 minutes in Hungarian. In 1985 all regional stations were prohibited by the communist regime. After the fall of Ceaușescu and his regime in 1989 transmissions were resumed and grew steadily to 15 hours a day. On 1323 kHz you usually hear Radio Marosvásárhelyi Rádió in Hungarian. Weekend days feature an hour of Radio Târgu Mureș Minoritate in the language of the Roma, and an hour Radio Neumarkt in German. By now you should be able to guess where the name Neumarkt comes from…
The English desk of Radio Romania International has always been so kind to verify my reports, even for local Radio Romania stations. So I’d like to do them a little favor in return by publishing their winter 2023-2024 schedule, valid from October 29th. More info can be found here.
The medium wave scene is pretty dynamic right now. And 1584 kHz has always been a frequency where several low power stations compete. I got this QSL Vocea Sperantei for my reception of their program on 1584 kHz. I sent my report to firstname.lastname@example.org .
Vocea Sperantei has 4 transmitters on this frequency. All have a rather modest power of 1 kW only. Nevertheless I hear them quite often, battling with SER stations from Spain, Greatest Hit Radio from the UK, or Studio X from Italy.
Vocea Sperantei means “Voice of Hope”. The station is part of the Adventist World Radio network (as you could have guessed from the three trumpets in the logo).
As they write on their website: “In an indifferent, confused world with toppled values, Voice of Hope is a different kind of radio, with a different message. Because of the current topics, the warm and optimistic tone of the producers and the interest in the problems of the listeners, Vocea Sperantei radio is for everyone who needs a friend, strength and hope”. And indeed in these troubled times I can only applaud them for their effort.
I received an email from the English desk of Radio Romania International announcing their new winter schedule. In the same email they announced that they are working ways to send out digital or eQSLs in 2023. As we are already in the 4th quarter I’m not sure if this is a typo, although I’m still waiting on a 2023 QSL. Anyway it is a pity as I loved the old school QSL they sent, and they were reliable verifiers. Recent budget cuts forced them to close two out of five transmitters. So I guess the move to eQSLs is probably another cost reduction measure.
Via the English Desk of Radio Romania International I received this email as QSL Antena Satelor 1314 kHz. On this frequency Antena Satelor has two transmitters: one in Valu lui Traian (near Constanta), and one in Timisoara. Antena Satelor is a state owned station that started in 1991. The programmes target the audience living in the rural villages in Romania. For listeners outside Romania this comes with the benefit that you can listen to very nice folk music from Romania on this station.
I was surprised to receive Radio Oltenia Craiova in pretty good quality here in the Netherlands, despite their low power (15 kW) on 1314 kHz. My report was answered with a very polite email from the English Service of Radio Romania International. Not sure if this will deliver a QSL Radio Oltenia Craiova though…. Maybe the station will respond directly. Craiova by the way is the capital of the Oltenia region in south west Romania. The region has a great history. It was part of Walachia with Vlad Dracula as its most famous prince.