THE founder of a community radio station which has been on the airwaves for more than a decade has scooped a top award.

Ian Robertson, who was at the heart of Haddington-based East Coast FM since its formation, was presented with the Community Media Champion 2022 last month.

The Community Media Champions recognise people who have made a special and significant contribution to community media.

Mr Robertson, who lives in Carrington, near Bonnyrigg, was “overwhelmed” with the accolade, which was presented by chairman of Community Media Association Dom Chambers.

The award winner said: “It’s huge and it does make me think, for me anyway, you reflect on everything you have done.

“I don’t do it to get awards. What I did, I did because of my love of working with the community.”

'Led the way'

Mr Chambers highlighted the work of the award-winner and previous successes.

He said: “I have been really inspired by Ian’s work in driving a truly engaging community station at East Coast FM.

“He has led the way for community broadcasting in the UK by highlighting the value of the Princess Royal Award for Training to the wider broadcasting industry.

“He richly deserves our recognition as a 2022 Community Media Champion and I could not be more pleased to present the award to him.”

Mr Robertson, who previously lived in Whitecraig, stepped away from East Coast FM, which is based on Haddington’s Hospital Road, earlier this year.

He told the Courier how the station, which took to the airwaves in 2010, was “my life”.

'I learnt a lot'

The 71-year-old said: “I loved working with the community and that is another reason I got this award.

“I loved working with the children, especially those with special needs.

“There were so many things during Covid that we did with mental health programmes and talking to people with mental health issues.

“It is a huge umbrella and I learnt a lot.”

The radio station has provided an opportunity for people of all ages to become a presenter.

Its School Bell show has been recognised at the awards for the Community Show of the Year.

Mr Robertson said: “My proudest achievement is we had three different individuals who lived with forms of autism: one with an extreme form of autism, another lad could not get a job for years, and another one with autism.

“All three now work full time for the BBC and have done for years.”