Search for Asian Radio Recordings and Memories in Leicester

In the late 1970s and the 1980s two thirds of the Asian population in Leicester listened to the Six O’clock Show on BBC Radio Leicester. Presenters Don Kotak, Mira Trivedi, Vijay Sharma, Rabia Raza and Mike Allbut all became household names in the city with their informal mix of information, interviews and music.

As part of new research examining how BBC local radio tried to connect with new Asian audiences across England, this University of Leicester study is looking for home recordings of The Six O’clock Show. Despite the popularity of the programme almost no recordings remain.

Researcher Liam McCarthy from our School of History, Politics and International Relations said: “Many people in Leicester used to record the programme to listen to the music later, music which was hard to come by in Leicester, especially in the 1970s. We would love people to search their cupboards, garages and lofts for forgotten recordings."

A further key part of the study is to find and interview people about their memories of listening to the programme, and the difference it made to Asian people in Leicester. The Six O’clock Show launched over 40 years ago in October 1976, it was broadcast in English making the programme accessible to the whole community.

The search will be launched at the Diwali lights switch-on in Leicester on Sunday 8 October. People are encouraged to visit the BBC Bus at the Diwali Village on Cossington Park in Belgrave.

This study is funded by the University of Leicester, The Midlands3Cities Doctoral Training Partnership and the Arts and Humanities Research Council.