[This text was revised with additions on October 31, 2020.]
Back in 2017 we produced a timeline that was circulated as part of the informal 'Caroline Investigative Newsletter' in which this question was addressed:
"When did Allan James Crawford begin his first venture into offshore radio?"
The purpose of the suggested timeline was to put the accepted history of the ship Bon Jour / Magda Maria / Mi Amigo into perspective. But our own timeline contained a basic error in year and it also raised a new question about the starting date regarding the original date of involvement by Allan James Crawford.
So Francois Lhote of Offshore Echos digest, kindly pointed out our error by directing attention to an article in OEM 173. Now, by removing our typo and adding new timeline details, an anomaly surfaced which has remained unaddressed but which is defined by the question: "When did Allan James Crawford begin his first venture into offshore radio?"
Anorak trolls snorted "cheek", when we first posed this question a few days ago, in as much that anorak trolls who claim to know everything, but in reality know nothing, think that someone else should always pay for their knowledge in both time and money. This is what at least two vanity authors believed when they ripped-off our research and created more pages of plagiarized text hammered into nonsensical pulp supporting Ronan O'Rahilly rubbish.
The focus of Francois' interest, was a translated press report from the 'Nieuwe Leidsch Courant' newspaper that is dated January 19, 1963, because it begins: "No interest for former radio ship." It is about the ship then known as Magda Maria, which had been called Bon Jour, but it was not as yet renamed Mi Amigo.
At the time of that press report, the ship was tied-up to a quay at Ostend in Belgium. It was here where the main mast supporting the radio ship's broadcasting antenna was removed after it collapsed on or just after January 11, 1963, following a storm. But now let's turn the clock back to the previous year:
It was not until July 23, 1962 when Radio Nord ceased broadcasting from the ship then known as Bon Jour. Then is sailed for El Ferrol, Spain to undergo a refit where it also acquired its new name of Magda Maria.
While all this was going on, what was Allan James Crawford doing? That is the question whose answer creates another question. On March 2, 1962, information to hand shows that Crawford obtained a ship's mortgage on the retired Trinity House Vessel named Satellite which was docked on the Isle of Wight. (So that we don't get into another semantic round of nonsense from hack plagiarists, we use that word to mean that it was tied-up to a quay.)
We do know that Crawford expressed an interest in acquiring the ex-Radio Nord vessel, but as his ship's mortgage on the 'Satellite' clearly demonstrates, he did not have the cash to buy the Bon Jour / Magda Maria, and the owner's representative Bill Weaver from Houston, had instructions to sell it, and not to lease it. So Crawford had gone ahead with a plan to use the former Trinity House vessel, instead. But Crawford still had to lean on a financial backer to pay that mortgage and outfit that ship.
Crawford's backer was John Delaney whose organization controlled a bevy of related theatrical service companies. But when on August 15, 1962, Danish Police raided the ship Lucky Star from which old tapes had been used to restart Radio Mercur broadcasts, John Delaney pulled the plug on Crawford's radio ship plans. The issue at stake was the status of the British 'Hovering Acts', so called. If the Danes were going beyond their territorial waters to board a ship, what was to stop the British from ignoring the status of the 'Hovering Acts' and doing the same thing to silence transmissions from the Magda Maria? If the British did board the ship, would they then seize and take it away from its Texas owners without financial compensation?
Bill Weaver could not risk that!
The 'Hovering Acts' was the colloquial name for a series of laws designed to stop smugglers from using 'mother ships' at anchor just outside British territorial waters. Those laws had been scrapped when 'Free Trade' was adopted by the UK during the second half of the Nineteenth Century. But with tariff walls being introduced again in an ad hoc manner, it was again possible that these laws could be reinvigorated by reactivation.
So Bill Weaver told Allan James Crawford that the answer was "No!", he would not lease the Magda Maria to him. But now, after Crawford had adopted a 'Plan B' to use the THV 'Satellite', John Delaney had just pulled the plug on that plan as well.
This is where that question: "When did Allan James Crawford begin his first venture into offshore radio?" - comes in, because it has been oft-repeated that Allan James Crawford had registered CBC (Plays) Limited back in 1960, with Dorothy (Kitty) Black, and both of them had the intention of starting an offshore radio station using CBC (Plays) Limited!
Clearly this is not true!
In fact, we used the services of an investigator to search the records of UK Companies House; the London Gazette and similar entities to discover who registered CBC (Plays) Limited, and why they registered it. The investigator came back with a vague date of incorporation as being somewhere between 1959 and 1960, while later government employees in 1962 cited the date of April 2, 1960 and began attributing its incorporation to Crawford and Black.
What we discovered is that the company registration number for CBC (Plays) Limited is "missing" in sequence from all present-day preserved records of UK company registrations. We also found that its date of incorporation is very close to the sequence of incorporation numbers and the date of Herbert W. Armstrong's Ambassador College (UK) Limited. However, that entity changed its name years later, and so Ambassador College (UK) Limited is not to be found under that name, but under another name relating to a church - which is still registered in the UK. It is because that sequence of numbers is still "live" that it is possible to backtrack and find the information about the original incorporation for Ambassador College (UK) Limited. But you have to know the latter name to find its original name!
But CBC (Plays) Limited is a now a defunct company having been forced out of business (by pressure applied in mid-1967, before the MOA), in a British court by a Panamanian subsidiary of Wijsmuller. Clearly there is also a direct relationship between that action and the towing away of the two Caroline ships in March 1969. (This Wijsmuller subsidiary is the same company that employed the Caroline radio engineers prior to the MOA!)
Complicating matters even more, is that fact that Armstrong later incorporated Ambassador College in the UK once again - but as another company, separate from the one which is still active under the church name. But then this second entity was also wound-up. However, that happened within the timeframe when digital records began to be recorded, but the original version took place in the "dark ages" of the Sixties.
Meanwhile, the folks at Companies House began dumping defunct company records, and this is before the age of digital recording began! So CBC (Plays) Limited fell into the black hole of oblivion.
This is an important issue because it means that later governmental investigators who used contemporary events of 1962 and 1963 to document the inter-governmental activity of CBC (Plays) Limited, did not join the dots back to 1960, but they did reference its commencement in 1960. However, the name they referred to was CBC (Plays) Limited, and this presents another problem for investigators.
Where this is important to our storyline, is the fact that CBC (Plays) Limited held the licensing contract with the Liechtenstein entity represented by Bill Weaver, and CBC (Plays) Limited was the backbone of Project Atlanta Limited which was incorporated at the beginning of August 1963. Crawford did drop out, but both Project Atlanta Limited and its parent company CBC (Plays) Limited continued on into the 1970s.
But the question is this: If Ambassador College (UK) Limited which was incorporated within the same batch or time sequence of numbers as CBC (Plays) Limited in 1960, but then changed its name and purpose from a college to a church; what was the original name and purpose of CBC (Plays) Limited?
It should also be noted that Planet Productions Limited was registered in Ireland during February 1964, and despite all of the claims to the contrary, no company under any name - including Caroline Sales - ever existed in the UK as a registered entity owning the operations called Radio Caroline. The only link in the chain is with CBC (Plays) Limited which became the backbone of Project Atlanta Limited.
The example of Ambassador College (UK) Limited which had a numerical registration sequence in 1960 that was very close to CBC (Plays) Limited, raises this all important and unanswered question: Since Ambassador College (UK) Limited incorporation remained active - but not under that name - what was the original registration name and purpose of CBC (Plays) Limited, because this is where two more problems arise.
It is more than coincidence that CNBC gained a similar working name to CBC (Plays) Limited, and that PYE had used the CBC initials before CNBC, and just after the original name registration (under whatever name it was), was obtained by the registration number for CBC (Plays) Limited.
More than this, in 1960, Alan Bednall was the designer of a CBC logo for PYE!
Bednall is also the person who claimed that John Stanley secretly masterminded Radio Caroline, after supplying equipment to both Radio Luxembourg and the Isle of Man station projects. There were two IOM versions, and one of them tied directly to Allan James Crawford and the plans of John Stanley! It is also clear that Allan James Crawford was aware of the PYE involvement on the Isle of Man with its threat to begin 'Radio Vannin' to pressure the British GPO into supplying Manx Radio with a decent wavelength and suitable power.
PYE was also behind the move to anchor the Fredericia off Ramsay Bay as a part of this highly secretive plan. It was first anchored off Essex to test British reaction: Would the British reactivate the 'Hovering Acts' in whole or in part to silence Radio Caroline? Simon Dee was the guinea pig and he discovered that the way was clear - the British would not forcibly board the Fredericia.
Weaver then gave the green light for Crawford to lease the Mi Amigo!
All of this brings us back to our first question: "When did Allan James Crawford begin his first venture into offshore radio?"
The answer appears to be at some point in 1962 and Crawford is also on record as saying that he first met Ronan O'Rahilly in early 1963.
So what was Kitty Black doing? She was working for Associated Rediffusion and Granada Television producing plays while the agents for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) were in London trying to export British plays to Canada for broadcast by CBC.
However, there are several other links in this chain which we know about that we won't go into here, but they will be in the book 'Dial 999 for Caroline'.
If you are going to cite this paid for research, please do not steal it and claim it as your own work. We will be naming those who engage in intellectual theft within our new book.
[This text was revised with additions on October 31, 2020.]
Yesterday we asked this question ....
"When did Allan James Crawford begin his first venture into offshore radio?"
Well the anorak trolls responded by promoting the question and drew attention to our original post, but so far, the question itself has remained unanswered.
Why is this important to us, and what does it have to do with this project?
Years ago (2014) we were about to write the history of offshore radio by incorporating the given story about Radio Caroline. But we had already discovered holes in the version spun by Ronan O'Rahilly who was a fraudster - a con man.
Then we were confronted by a challenge which blew Ronan O'Rahilly into the realms of obscure blathering or blethering as some would have it. That challenge arose due to the misquoted claims of Alan Bednall. So we embarked on a very lengthy search of discovery to find the original version of what Bednall had actually claimed.
Then we found it, but Bednall had not named the entities which would have allowed us to connect the dots.
Recently we found that entity.
But unfortunately the official records relating to it seem to be missing. A curator went in search of it" via three main governmental sources and drew blanks.
Then we found some indicators by buying information from a score of credible sources, and all of that led to the question now posed to anorak trolls of the "Church of Caroline".
We arrived at this question:
"When did Allan James Crawford begin his first venture into offshore radio?"
We have a working answer, but, since some of the anorak trolls like to play "gotcha!" games, we are giving them a chance to speak or forever keep quiet and crawl back into their own world of nonsense.
No, we are not stating in public what the evidence seems to point to in answer to that question, so this means that anyone offering their own answer will have to do so providing their own sources of proof to support their claims.
Why is this so important?
Because we have now decided upon a two-part approach to publishing our findings and it is one we have used in the past.
We will be providing a storyline for general release to the public, but not a storyline that is weighed-down by footnotes and endnotes of the kind found in academic works.
However, we will then begin publishing a series of academic works that will take apart one element of the storyline at a time, and thoroughly document it, one book at a time.
Whether the storyline is one or two books remains to be seen, but the academic companions will be a series of books. As stated earlier, we have used this approach before, although the anorak trolls seem to be unaware of this fact.
Oh, yes, you have not heard the last of Caroline Brooks by the way: I will be the narrator of the storyline!
But anorak trolls out there .... don't let the name of Caroline Brooks distract you from your quest to provide your own answer to this question:
"When did Allan James Crawford begin his first venture into offshore radio?"
Do you even know the answer?
So far your posted rants seem to indicate total ignorance!
While we work on the first of our own new series of books, we want to pose a question for all of the would-be offshore radio "experts" out there, who think that they can educate everyone about the beginnings of Radio Caroline.
Now in this instance we are going to be very specific.
Ronan O'Rahilly never said that he did not know Allan James Crawford, and Crawford is on film saying that he first met O'Rahilly at the beginning of 1963.
Jocelyn Stevens is on film, with Ronan O'Rahilly in the same room, where Stevens said that the beginnings of the Radio Caroline project took place around September-October of 1963.
But when did Allan James Crawford begin his first venture into offshore radio?
If you think that you know, be sure to back up your claim with documented proof with the name of your source and the date of original publication.
Then, wander over to Conversation Central and post your findings. (Use the 'Comments' link at the top of this page.)
Be sure to repost this challenge on the Garry Stevens' Forum and its related password-protected offspring.
Although we stated that we were not going to be posting additional research on this Blog at the present time in order not to encroach on our forthcoming book 'Dial 999 for Caroline', we also stated that we will be updating other pages on this site such as Timeline and BioFrag. However, our research is continuing, and now we have come across this email from 2004 which will give you an idea of how long Paul Rusling and Malcolm Smith have been trying to undermine our research, just as others in the offshore radio world have been assisting us.
So we are posting this redacted email as a time-marker to preserve just how much and for how long these little-minded censors have been burying the real story by hindering our research which began back around 1985 when Don Pierson gave us his financial and legal documents relating to Radio London; Radio England; Britain Radio, and his other offshore station projects.
From our email vault here is an enquiry from 2004 and our timely response. The "JE" and "John England" referred to in the text is Mervyn Hagger. The site referred to is one of our earlier web sites when we shared a lot of research with a lot of people, and as a result, some of them stole it for their own vanity publications:
Date: Thu, 17 Jun 2004 23:03:02 +0100
You claim many things about the ownership of the Ross but do not include all the details on this site.
Would you please expand on the subject.
Date: Sat 6/19/2004 11:02 AM
Thanks for the email. At the moment we are a little too busy to do this, but it is on our "to do" list. However, if you might also ask Christopher Rollins = Chris England or even John Burch who I know were in receipt of copies of the original research.
While Chris England likes to pretend that he knows nothing at all about all of this on his Anorak Nation site, he in fact was the instigator of the research as a part of his plan to take over the Ross Revenge at the time that he registered Radio Caroline Ltd. In those days John Burch was his on again off again companion in his scheme for which he had backing of the DTI Radio Investigation Service chief Barry Maxwell.
From our files by cut and paste:
(1990 - January 9 = Research continues into the ownership of the "M.V. Ross Revenge" for John Burch and Chris ("England") Rollins. Some of this information is being passed on to Barry Maxwell (head of the DTI/RIS, London), who asked John England on the telephone to request additional information from Panamanian Government officers in New York and Panama City.)
It is also interesting that on the Anorak Nation site Paul Rusling also seems to want to distance himself from the facts, and no wonder since he is now trying to raise a lot of money for his IoM station.
However, the thread that links all of the offshore history together is James Ryan.
Rusling worked with Ryan many times. Ryan was behind the original Radio Caroline "MV Imagine" venture. The sales link of that group eventually became the sales arm for Laser. Ryan was also involved with many of the other attempts to launch offshore radio in the 1980s after Caroline and Laser.
Today no one wants to talk about Ryan because Ryan was sent to prison in the USA over the Radio Caroline fraud. From our files:
(1989: April 5 = James Ryan sentenced to five years imprisonment, five years probation, $10,000 fine, and $332,000.501 restitution, by the U.S. District Court of Pennsylvania (case number 84-314). This case arose from Ryan's activities to refloat "Radio Caroline", by raising $1.4 million from investors who he then defrauded.)
The Ross Revenge itself also links to one individual in Europe who others assisted in setting up a series of interlocking companies. By the time that Malcolm Smith (Peter Moore) got hold of it the real owner had more or less abandoned it, but that did not mean that Smith had legal ownership, only defacto possession. Unless the real owner has since made a gift of the ship to Smith (the Ross is more of a financial liability than an asset as a ship), then Smith and his associates still do not have legal ownership.
When the ship was boarded it did not have Panamanian or any other registration. It was stateless. James Murphy who was behind the scenes working to silence the station worked for the little known office of the Official Solicitor as an Investigator on behalf of the Secretary of State for the DTI.
The Official Solicitor is an office that goes back to the time when the law in England was split between the spiritual (CofE) and temporal. Those two offices still exist today but the last gasp of the Murphy office was during the Heath government in 1971 and the Pentonville 5.
Now that office deals mainly with the interests of children and it has been pulled under government control. Back then it was an ancient freewheeling office with amazing powers that everyone had forgotten about until the Heath debacle, but it was not until Blair - long after the Ross boarding - that the Official Solictor was stripped of his super powers.
As you can tell it will take some time to put this entire information on line in detail to answer all questions, so I hope that this overview will help you in the meantime. You might want to share this information with others while asking Chris England and perhaps Paul Rusling for some answers.
One question we want answered was prompted originally by John Burch. Here are notes from that time - by the way, everything that is in brackets with dates has been cut and pasted from other files in order for you to read the information within this email -
(1993: January 14 = John Burch informed John England by telephone that Ray Anderson was in Florida with Paul Alexander Rusling to sue James Ryan in a U.S. court over money owed on the rebirth of the "Laser Hot Hits" radio station.
The reason why the last item is interesting is because it first cropped up again on Martin's massive Offshore Radio web site in the Broadcasting Fleet section and it was written by Paul Rusling who claimed that the same ship was supposed to have become Sir James Goldsmith's "Referendum Radio" to sway the 1997 General Election. That did not happen and Goldsmith flooded the UK with video tapes instead. However, what is interesting is that when we asked Martin to ask Rusling for more information - Rusling shut up and today he refuses to talk about it.
John Burch also seems to remain silent on this topic.
Then Rusling, Rollins (Chris England), Burch, and Malcolm Smith (Moore) began their slag off attacks against John England on the Anorak Nation site - which John England was not even writing to. In fact he knew nothing about all of that until someone like yourself began sending this information to him some time later. These people are very afraid of the truth.
That is why we debunked "Sealand" (a sunken ship not an island fort which is the reason that Bates can never succeed with his plans and why his Internet venture flopped when the Americans left for the USA and denounced Bates for fraud!) It is also the reason why we have exposed Anderson - no matter what he tries to accomplish in the name of Radio London.
The reason why these people are afraid of John England and (his) associates is because Rusling, Rollins, Anderson, et al are mainly interested in money for themselves and not in basic freedom for all individuals. That is why they surround themselves with crooks and con-men. Alan Weiner was and is the same way. Weiner's projects were also built upon fraud ... with advice from James Ryan!
Rusling is scared to death that the name of James Ryan will be raised once more and in so doing cause his potential investors to take a double look at what he is really trying to do.
Now you know.
[AS WHERE INDICATED, ALL EMAIL TEXT HAS BEEN REPRODUCED FROM A FILE DATED 2004.]
This Blog began on 3/3/2020 in response to a book that had been recently published called 'The Radio Caroline Bible' whose author had plagiarized (stolen) a lot of our research material and then mangled it by attempting to make it conform to the nonsense (false) scenario that was set out in another book called 'Rocking the boat', which we have also referred to before.
If this Blog now continues with information text past our edition of 10/9/2020, we will be encroaching upon information which we prefer to debut in our new book 'Dial 999 for Caroline', which will be our first in a series of new books aimed at a larger and more general audience than our previous academic marketplace publications.
So this is where we stop this Blog - for now.
Once 'Dial 999 for Caroline' has been published, we may resume this Blog, but until then we will concentrate upon other aspects of this site including the Timeline and BioFrag sections. That is where you will begin to notice the addition of new information.
We guarantee that the information that we have researched and uncovered, once read in context in 'Dial 999 for Caroline', will come as a surprise to many, and as a total shock to everyone who was brought upon the lies, distortions and mythology spun about events that led up to offshore broadcasting to the British Isles, primarily between the years 1964 to 1967.
Yesterday, we referred you back to our Blog of 4/7/20 titled 'Meet Alan Bednall'. Today, we are going to ask you to again refer back to that Blog, because the information printed there, is the information that also belongs here in context, and we see no point in posting it again. So if you are interested in trying to comprehend what really took place between the years 1960 to 1963, please go to that earlier edition.
The story of PYE "packaged radio stations" that first saw major exposure in 1960 at two consecutive exhibitions, was timed to coincide with the hundreds of local radio station companies (and their subsidiaries), that were formed parallel to the anti-commercial radio and television drive by the GPO-BBC Pilkington Committee. That story about PYE "packaged radio stations" has been one of the most heavily censored media news stories of all time.
We are not claiming that news stories did not exist, because we are reproducing some of them on this Blog. What we are claiming is that those news stories have been ignored by authors who have written about the history of British broadcasting. This is especially true as it relates to that period of time leading up to the ultra-secret creation of Radio Caroline.
As we previously reported in parts 1c and 1d of this present series, there were eventually hundreds of radio stations seeking licenses at that time, and all were denied, except for Manx Radio. But the story of Manx Radio has been heavily censored, and its license only squeaked under the radar due to the special circumstances surrounding the laws governing the Isle of Man.
That station began as a project to create a full-blown super-power operation known as 'Radio Manx', but it was toned down to the whimper known as 'Manx Radio'. Even so, that station was first hauled on to the landscape as self-contained "packaged radio station" from PYE. But contemporary press accounts merely shrugged it off as being in a "caravan". Journalists missed the real story by a mile! It was a "packaged radio station". Calling it a "caravan" gives the impression that this was merely a one-off mobile home that was put to another use, and not as just the packaging used for that particular station.
But what all of these stations waiting in the wings for licenses had in common, was their need for equipment, if they had been successful in getting British licenses. That is where PYE hoped to step-in as both the manufacturer and supplier of their requirements.
More specifically, that is where Charles Orr Stanley handed over that phase to his son John Stanley. In addition to manufacturing and supplying, PYE also set out in detail where new radio stations could be established within the United Kingdom without causing interference. Those prospective stations were detailed in both text and maps within a publication called the 'PYE Plan for Local Broadcasting'. That Plan was backed-up with research by a team from the USA who, since the early days of radio broadcasting in America, had been responsible for the creation of similar plans in their own country.
PYE maintained a working relationship with that company from the time that PYE recommenced its new campaign for UK sponsored commercial radio and television, half-way through World War II. Those plans were then used in conjunction with relatively low-cost, production-line radio and television stations ready to be loaded on to a truck; a train or a ship, and then transported anywhere in the world. PYE did successfully sell some of these stations to other countries.
Nicholas Stanley, who is the grandson of Charles Orr Stanley, and son of John Stanley, commissioned a book that supposedly recreated the history of the PYE Group of companies, which, according to him, had been destroyed when various parts of the PYE Group were absorbed by Phillips. Unfortunately, he assigned the job of writing his book to a journalist who did not understand the subject matter he was writing about. To assist him, a technical writer was also brought in.
However, the author Mark Frankland was working on a manuscript which covered far more than the subject of broadcasting. PYE was a group of companies making a vast number of consumer; military; industrial, and nautical products. Frankland drew upon existing published works about these subjects, as well as a scattered collection of PYE documents, to create his work.
One of these documents had been created by Nicholas Stanley; son of John Stanley and grandson of Charles Orr Stanley. On page 276 of the book 'Radio Man' which was funded by Nicholas Stanley to the tune of approximately £100,000, is a single paragraph which, when read 'as is', makes no sense whatsoever. It cost us both time and money to uncover what this book was concealing, and how it had been concealed. But why it was concealed, primarily by Nicholas Stanley himself by misdirection, we still don't know.
It all centered upon one man named Alan Bednall and three pages of an interview that Nicholas Stanley had personally undertaken in the home of Alan Bednall. We have previously published that document on 4/7/2020 with the Blog edition heading of 'Meet Alan Bednall'.
We have extracted the relevant and verbatim information as it relates to Radio Caroline, and placed it within the composite picture shown below:
Based upon what has been published to date by many authors, and what has been broadcast in many documentaries, the statement by Alan Bednall is at odds with them all. Either he lied, or he told the truth.
But Bednall's account is also at odds with the paragraph that was published on page 276 of the book 'Radio Man'. However, once other previously hidden information is also factored in, the contradictions disappear.
What is now important is to discover missing pieces of information that support what Alan Bednall really told Nicholas Stanley!
But that raises another major question:
How can you find something when you don't know exactly what it is that you are looking for?
The answer to that riddle is actually quite funny, because one of the most important 'keys' is hidden in plain sight, and we have now republished it several times on this Blog! However, we have have deliberately avoided drawing attention to it, thus far!
The reason why we have not connected those dots so far (but we will), has to do with the microscopic way in which we have been examining the cold case evidence. We are not going to engage in 'guilt by association' or wild conspiracy theories, because we are going to use academic and police standards of documentation that first require the laying down of precedent to which other documented evidence can be joined.
Having been previously ripped-off by so many plagiarists, we have been very clear about the fact that what we are doing is unique. It has not been done before and this evidence has not been assembled in this way before.
There is a distinct "them" and "us" approach to this work. It will eventually be assembled in the first book in a new series that will be published later this year with the working title of 'Dial 999 for Caroline'.
More on this theme in part 3, tomorrow.
[This is a revised and extracted text from the previous editorial published on 10/5/2020. Our purpose is to separate and then expand parallel tracks about Aodogán O'Rahilly; Allan James Crawford; Charles Orr Stanley and Ian Cowper Ross. To this list we now add Gordon McLendon and his representative Charles William (Bill) Weaver.
Part 1d begins to focus attention on the parallel stories which have been ignored by everyone else and their contents jumbled up into a convoluted and absurd storyline to make Radio Caroline burst on to the scene as if by 'magic'. But the only 'magic' being performed is sleight-of-hand to get readers to buy into a totally fictitious storyline about a non-existent person called 'Jimmy'.
Of late the same troll who has stalked us, has recently posted what he calls an 'essay' about Ian Cowper Ross and his biological family. That 'essay' is no more than a few lines lifted from two or three sources and cobbled together as one, and then passed-off as his own storyline.
For years we have been aware of this information, but we have also been aware that several people share the same name as the father of Ian Cowper Ross. There is more certainty about the life of his paternal grandfather than there is about the life of his father, except that we know that his father became a glorified salesman for a sports car company that was in financial difficulty, and which eventually went out of business.
Consequently what we post here is based upon fact and not 'guilt by association'. If we employ a working hypothesis - we inform our readers that it is only a working hypothesis and a tool to aid us in our cold case investigation into the actual and authentic and provable origins of Radio Caroline.
Cobbling together an irrelevant part about "a" Charles Edward Ross, does not prove anything in relation to the father of Ian Cowper Ross. We do know that Ian's father sold Jensen cars, and that Ian took one of them and crashed it into a bus resulting in a lengthy hospital stay and the near-loss of his foot. A year later, he hobbled into a court of law to answer charges of reckless driving.
We also know that a person named Charles Edward Ross who does appear to be the father of Ian Cowper Ross, had been hauled into a court of law himself, for drunk driving, and that this person then appears to have died intestate - which is defined as "a person who has died without having made a will." The person we found meeting this description seems to have died without assets to leave to anyone.
We also note that neither Ian Cowper Ross, nor his several children, appear to make any reference to Charles Edward Ross, but much mention is made of one part of the aristocratic family line that Ian Cowper Ross married into. In other words, don't be fooled by a troll, or the many fake writers claiming to tell you the true story of Radio Caroline, because they have no idea about what that story really is.
We do, and you are reading it free of charge!
After these present segments have been expanded, and which are all part 1 called 'Setting the stage: 1960-1963', we will move on to part 2. These parallel tracks will eventually be joined into one theme within the forthcoming book 'Dial 999 for Caroline'.]
For the precursory timeline that runs from 1960 to 1963 and then leads into the creation of Radio Caroline, we have arbitrarily selected the stating year of 1960. We could just as easily have pushed back the year to 1900 and even earlier in the Nineteenth Century, due to the interconnectivity of events. But in order to at least bring a sense of topicality to this subject, we have chosen the years from 1960 to 1963, and this is because in 1960, PYE unveiled its "packaged" radio and television stations "to go", or as the British say, "to take away". One example of this "off-the-shelf" approach is shown in the 1964 composite picture below regarding the arrival of a "packaged" Manx Radio:
What is very clear from all of the collected evidence (and we have a growing library that is already full of documentation), is the fact that Charles Orr Stanley and the PYE Group of companies were the true creators of a rival system of broadcasting to the one created by the British Crown and its GPO, using a lapdog monopoly known as BBC. But Charles Orr Stanley who was born in Ireland, unlike Ronan O'Rahilly's father; also relied upon a lot of help from the USA, and especially from both individuals and businesses in the State of Texas.
Now the riddle that we are trying to solve, is how the established and well documented timeline of the rush to register and promote sponsored commercial radio stations in 1960, get tangled-up with the subject of British offshore radio, and in particular, Radio Caroline? The story of Radio London is an entirely separate issue which we fully understand and can document, but the story of Radio Caroline has always been submerged in lies and deceit.
The offshore story emerges from PYE in a very circular fashion. In 1959 Conservative MP Geoffrey Hirst had registered in England, Radio Yorkshire (Development) Limited which was based in Shipley, Yorkshire. It was one of the several hundred such stations that were formed in the Nineteen Sixties, all of them in anticipation of licensed commercial radio broadcasting, which did not materialize.
Radio Yorkshire quickly became wrapped within the affairs of Ross Radio Productions which was already involved with PYE in making sponsored audience participation shows recorded in England, for broadcast on Radio Luxembourg. Another entity involved individuals who would later became heavily involved with PYE on the Isle of Man. (We will have a lot more to say about Radio Yorkshire; Ross Radio Productions; etc., later on).
Then there is a British offshore timeline that emerges in November 1960 with a radio station using the call letters CNBC. They were derived from Commercial Neutral Broadcasting Company. But whether that entity was ever registered in England as a company, is uncertain at the moment. However, in November 1960, CNBC began test transmissions from a radio ship anchored off the coast of Holland, but after several attempts to provide a good signal that could be received in England, they gave up after March 22, 1961.
Then, towards the end of 1961, an announcement was made in a Canadian newspaper about a station to be known as 'Voice of Slough'. On November 16 of that year, journalist Doug Marshall reported in a Ottawa newspaper that a 42-years old Canadian journalist who had gained experience on a Toronto radio station, planned to begin a small broadcasting venture from off the coast of England. Its promoter's name is John Thompson, and he had now taken up residence in Slough, England. He had also 'borrowed' a theme name which the Rank organization had already used to register as the prefix to several of its planned radio station companies. This same theme had also been picked up by would-be independent operators and the press had duly reported these registrations during the previous year. So in copycat fashion, John Thompson registered his own British company called Voice of Slough Ltd., and he planned use this eponymous name for his radio station.
John Thompson attracted a lot of publicity, and he also gained the attention of a con man named Arnold Swanson. He had got his hands on his wife's inheritance that she got from her father's legacy which had been built in Vancouver after amassing a fortune from the nautical shipping business. Swanson passed himself off of as being wealthy in his own right, and knowledgeable about ships and radio broadcasting. Metropolitan Police did not believe him. They were watching him because they thought he would do a "runner" once he got enough investors to fall for his own scheme. Swanson soon split from John Thompson and then Swanson announced the birth of a much bigger enterprise to be known as GBOK. Thompson then revived his own project, and again true to his copycat form, he called his reborn project - station GBLN. Neither GBLN or GBOK got anywhere, but there are indications that the GPO eventually raided Swanson's hulk called 'Lady Dixon', which was tied up alongside a PYE factory building at Sheerness. However, by September 1962, GBOK had disappeared from the press pages, although Arnold Swanson did up again in the Canadian press after his wife divorced him, and charged with engaging in underage (illegal) sexual activities.
Now it is within the murky events surrounding GBOK and its entanglement with PYE, that the story slides over into the arrival on the scene of Charles William (Bill) Weaver. He was manager of Gordon McLendon's radio station KILT in Houston, Texas; general manager of all McLendon Broadcasting stations, and on top of all that he was assigned by Gordon McLendon to close down Radio Nord, and then to sell off its radio ship called 'Bon Jour'.
With that quick overview and introduction, from which we will pick-up tomorrow with part 2, we now conclude our revised part 1 of 'Setting the stage: 1960-1963'.
[This is a revised and extracted text from the previous editorial published on 10/5/2020. Our purpose is to separate and then expand parallel tracks about Aodogán O'Rahilly; Allan James Crawford; Charles Orr Stanley and Ian Cowper Ross. Part 1c reveals the motivation behind the actions of Charles Orr Stanley and his son John Stanley. After they have been expanded, these parallel tracks will be joined to one theme in the book 'Dial 999 for Caroline'.]
As we previously noted many times in earlier editions of this Blog, Charles Orr Stanley and his son John Stanley were the ultra-secret movers and shakers behind the creation of Radio Caroline. But because of the PYE government contracts, the PYE involvement in Radio Caroline had to be kept quiet. PYE had no interest in running and operating stations, it was in the business of selling "packaged" radio and television stations to any operator, anywhere in the world who wanted to start a broadcasting station.
These "packaged" radio and television stations were literally radio and television stations self-contained inside a container building that could be transported and located anywhere in the world. The PYE "packaged" radio and television stations began to make their appearance for the first time in July 1960 at the Royal Agricultural Show held in Cambridge, England.
The second unveiling of a packaged radio station in-a-box to take-away in a Portakabin was put on display a month after the Royal Agricultural Show in Cambridge. This time PYE thumbed its nose at the Radio Show held at Earls Court, and they staged their own rival exhibition for a month at the Royal Festival Hall, and put all PYE products on display, and this included a complete TV station costing £18,500.
In the Nineteen Fifties, Charles Orr Stanley had been the driving force behind the creation of the Independent Television Authority (ITA), which held the license to transmit sponsored commercial television programs in the United Kingdom. ITA leased its airtime to "program contractors" who were nothing more than sponsored program agents, with a twist: they were monopolies in their own right. As one of the chairmen of a ITA program contracting company remarked: "It was a license to print money!" In their demarked zones they had no competitors!
PYE was also linked to the early rumblings of sponsored commercial radio in the way it had been beamed into the UK before World War II. It was PYE that began the campaign to restart sponsored commercial broadcasting either from outside and into the United Kingdom, or from within the UK, immediately after the end of hostilities made it possible.
But PYE held a lot of UK government contracts as well. They included products for atomic use and for conventional military use. On top of this, they were suppliers of equipment to the British Broadcasting Corporation. So when the wall went up with Pilkington, with BBC support, in their attempt to roll back ITA powers which allowed a version of sponsored commercial programming; Charles Orr Stanley and his many colleagues in both sponsored commercial radio and television programming, knew that trying to get licenses for sponsored commercial radio was going to be an uphill fight. They knew that one faction of the British Establishment was totally opposed to sponsored commercial broadcasting in any form.
After WWII, with the exception of Radio Luxembourg; Radio Monte Carlo and the limited scope of nationalistic Radio Eireann (restricting its airwaves to Irish advertisers), access to sponsored commercial airwaves was extremely limited. But as early as the Nineteen Forties, the practical application of ship-born stations anchored outside British territorial waters was considered, but it was shelved for reasons of technical practicality. However, by the dawn of the Nineteen Sixties that began to change.
On the one hand hundreds of land-based British broadcasting stations were being registered and clamoring for licenses. On the other hand the idea of broadcasting from ships had become a practical opportunity. But in the UK there was one major obstacle which dated back to the Nineteenth Century, and that obstacle was collectively known euphemistically as the 'Hovering Acts'. The theme of "Rule, Britannia! Britannia, rule the waves!" was not just a jingoistic and nationalistic battle cry from the days when the British Empire dominated much of the world, it was also meant as a threat to anyone daring to challenge British law. The might of the Royal Navy was British Crown's police force of the High Seas, and those seas were British.
"International Waters" are the "High Seas" which the Royal Navy had dominated as no more than British access portals to the British Empire which claimed ownership of both lands and people. Everyone was subject to the whims and fancies of the British Crown, which is defined in law as a corporation sole, and not the hand-waving figurehead of its monarch. "Freedom of the High Seas" became freedom for the British Crown and any other "Great Power" to do as it pleased, when it pleased; where it pleased, and how it pleased.
What this meant to Charles Orr Stanley was that by some method he needed to make daytime sponsored commercial radio broadcasting a reality. His target was the "housewives" at home minding children and buying consumer products. Radio Luxembourg's target audience was the one created after British husbands returned home from work, and older children returned home from school. At that point in time the "housewife" had to serve them. Her time alone was over, and so was that daytime target audience.
But for PYE to openly start a daytime sponsored commercial radio station from the sea represented a big threat to those PYE contracts with the British government. Therefore PYE had to act in strict secrecy and misdirect all attention away from its participation.
Part 1d of Setting the stage: 1960-1963, will follow ....
[This is a revised and extracted text from the previous editorial published on 10/5/2020. Our purpose is to separate and then expand parallel tracks about Aodogán O'Rahilly; Allan James Crawford; Charles Orr Stanley and Ian Cowper Ross. Part 1b is related to revealing the true identity of Ian Cowper Ross and his father Charles Edward Ross. After they have been expanded, these parallel tracks will be joined to one theme in the book 'Dial 999 for Caroline'.]
A true account of the events which took place in 1963 which resulted in the March 27, 1964 test broadcast by Radio Caroline, has never been reported anywhere, by anyone, until now. What has been reported about the origins of Radio Caroline, is a fictitious story that has been gradually embellished over time, and the actual story that you are reading now destroys the total mythology of the vanity publishers who have all claimed to tell readers "the real story of Radio Caroline". But they ALL lied. None of them have EVER reported the true story which you are reading here for the first time. Some have even stolen our research material and tried to hammer it into their own false narrative. Consequently we have kicked over a hornet's nest of angry vanity publishers who are being exposed as shysters, but they are not even that smart.
That fake story about Radio Caroline required a simple explanation regarding the source of the money which made it possible. So John Stanley, using layers of colleagues operating on a military-style "need-to-know" formula in which people only know the fragment of the plan that they are personally responsible for, brought in the public relations firm of Leslie Perrin Associates to spin a diversionary tale of events, and this is what Perrin told the press:
Leslie Perrin falsely ascribes Radio Caroline as the "brain child" of Ronan O'Rahilly in order to link a source of money to his father. However, we know that his father was looking for investors and that his son Ronan O'Rahilly was sent to London as a "bird dog" to drum-up business. We know that Ronan O'Rahilly was not the father of Radio Caroline, and we also know that necessity was the mother of its invention, and its place of birth was Houston, Texas.
Building upon a fake "fact", Perrin then claims that the London sales office of Radio Caroline was at 54-62 Regent Street, London, W.I. But the true facts show that only mail and enquiries addressed to 'Radio Caroline' went to that address because Radio Caroline did not have a sales office or any other office at that address. In fact, Radio Caroline was not listed anywhere in the UK as a company under any name!
So if there was no "sales office" at that address, and if 'Radio Caroline sales' did not exist as a legal entity, then Ian Ross was not "in charge of advertising sales", with or without the assistance of "Jose Scudder". The center of operations for Radio Caroline was at 47 Dean Street in the Soho District of London. That was the address occupied by several companies managed or affiliated to Allan James Crawford.
But Radio Caroline was not one of them because no such company as 'Caroline Sales'; 'Planet Sales'; 'Planet Productions' or 'Radio Caroline' was registered in the United Kingdom before 1965. In that year the UK Board of Trade sent an investigator to 6 Chesterfield Gardens which was identified as 'Caroline House'. He wanted to know who or what was behind Radio Caroline. This investigator located Ronan O'Rahilly who was the person named by Leslie Perrin. It was then revealed that Radio Caroline was really a legal phantom: it did not exist anywhere as a company under any name in the United Kingdom.
Then what of Planet Productions Limited? It was not registered anywhere at all until it was registered in the Republic of Ireland on February 24, 1964. But since the mv Fredericia had been bought by someone at the close of 1963, and that ship had been renamed 'Caroline' and held out to be the home of the station called 'Radio Caroline', then who had bought the ship and the radio station equipment on board the ship, and who had paid Dundalk Engineering Works to work on the ship at Greenore, under the supervision of Harry Spencer?
The original radio programs transmitted by the mv Caroline were recorded at 47 Dean Street under the supervision of people working for Allan James Crawford. The original planning of the mast and antenna system on board the mv Caroline involved Harry Spencer working with Captain De Jong Lanau, and Alfred Nicholas Thomas.
They all met for the first time at 47 Dean Street, while Ronan O'Rahilly was present. Then De Jong Lanau took Spencer to Holland to convince his associates at Wijsmuller that Spencer knew what he was talking about regarding the mv Fredericia which was under the custody of Wijsmuller. Later they went to Spain so that Spencer could get an idea of what kind of mast needed to be made to support a new antenna for that ship as well.
But what else did Leslie Perrin have to say about Ian Ross?
Ian Ross was no more an advertising salesman than his father was a City financier!
What we do know is that Ian Cowper Ross has written about some of these events and published them in book form, but they are intertwined with so much fiction (he also uses a fictitious name when writing about himself), that it is impossible to decipher what is true and what is false. However, the account of that supposed his car ride with Ronan O'Rahilly and Chris Moore to see his father, all comes from the 1990 daydreams of Ian Cowper Ross. That is when Ronan O'Rahilly is alleged to have referred to Charles Edward Ross as "Jimmy Ross"
It is because we hired a private investigator in London from whom we bought a copy of the 1966 official marriage certificate of Ian Cowper Ross, that we now know that his father's name.
His name is is Charles Edward Ross, or C.E. Ross.
It was not until 1990 that Ian Cowper Ross built upon the myth that his father had made the financial backing of Radio Caroline possible. Leslie Perrin Associates merely claimed that C.E. Ross was a "well-known City financier", which he wasn't. Charles Edward Ross was a glorified car salesman! But in 1990 Ian Cowper Ross decided to invent a story about his father being given the name 'Jimmy' by Ronan O'Rahilly. It is a most absurd story, but it was incorporated by Ian Cowper Ross into his autobiographical novel called 'Rocking the Boat'. That same year the 'Jimmy' hoax was included in an 'Arena' TV program shown on BBC television! Since no other explanation has been offered before we began to expose the true story, all writers have been copying the 'Jimmy' hoax and then repeating it as fact
We also know, based upon court records and other documentation, that Charles Edward Ross was not a financier, as many claim; nor was he known as "Jimmy". He was not part of Ross Fisheries or Carphone Warehouse. He was a director of the failed Jensen Car Company based in Birmingham, England.
For a time that company came under the financial umbrella of the Norcros Group of companies headed by John Sheffield. Charles E. Ross was a director of that Birmingham car manufacturer, but he was not the owner. We believe from evidence available that he was a Director of Sales.
Because Jensen was in financial difficulties, Norcros Ltd. had taken over its management, but they did not hold on to the company for very long, because they sold it back to its original owners. The Birmingham car company soon went out of business, although a U.S. investor later bought the name.
That is the real story that the 'Jimmy' hoax has been concealing. Ian Cowper Ross never discusses his father, other than by this apocryphal tale in his book.
Ian Cowper Ross never discusses his father, except in terms of the 'Jimmy' story, and neither do his own children discuss their grandfather on Ian's side of the family. Why? Because Ian Cowper Ross married into the aristocratic arm of the British Establishment, and it was his aristocratic mother-in-law who made his book 'Rocking the Boat' possible!
By marriage, Ian Cowper Ross linked himself to two different families tied to British aristocracy, and those links wrap around the music business in a very strange way. But what they don't do, is form any sort of connection to the "riff-raff" associated with pop music at the disc jockey level.
This is British snobbery at its worst, and of the kind that views non-Whites as less than perfect specimens of "God's handiwork", and the Irish and Jews as people who only become semi-acceptable if they swear allegiance to everything that British aristocracy believes in and represents.
British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli was accepted because he did his best to conform to what was expected by downplaying his ties to Judaism. Even the Scots are fobbed-off as belonging to some sort of northern county of England, so that British means English, and England refers to Britain, home of the "Brits". Consequently John Reith from Scotland did his best to invent a new tongue that melded all accents into a 'BBC-speak'. But when Charles Orr Stanley who represented a major slice of British industry had to deal with Tony Benn at government level, that meeting was couched in written sneers by Tony Benn on the pages of his published diaries!
Therefore, when as a young man Ian Cowper Ross began to come into contact with Jocelyn Stevens, he had to learn how to 'play the game' in order to gain entry into Establishment circles. Previously he had already got off to a bad start by being prosecuted for his reckless behavior.
On Friday, November 24, 1961, Ian Cowper Ross was 18 years of age when he appeared in Derby County Magistrates Court to answer charges that he had driven a Jensen sports car into a bus at Willington, Derbyshire. In court he was described as "self-employed"; the son of a director of a sports car manufacturing firm, and living at Reynards Wood, Woolmer Hill, Haslemere, Surrey.
The bus driver said in court: "The car was coming very fast on the wrong side of the road and the driver was struggling to turn the wheel." In 1961, that court was also told that Ian Cowper Ross had been visiting the private (public) school of Repton, which he had once attended. A redeeming factor was that he had not driven a Ford into the bus, but a Jensen, even though it was not his property.
That same press release by Leslie Perrin Associates said that he had returned with his parents from the USA, and it implied that this 17 years-old had become involved in a car crash while searching for a site to open a car wash with his brother. This accident had then placed him in hospital for a year. But omitted from that garbled account is the fact that at age 17 in 1960, he had also crashed an expensive Vincent Black Shadow motorbike into a shop window. That event was followed the next year at age 18 by his crash into a bus while driving a Jensen sports car on the wrong side of the road. Then came hospital, and finally on Friday, November 24, 1961, came the court case.
Notice also the Leslie Perrin reference that: "Ian Ross is the son of well known City financier C.E. Ross ....", which is a preposterous lie and yet, anoraks and academics and journalists and broadcasters have all swallowed that lie and repeated it as fact! But it is a lie!
Cutting to the chase, Charles Edward Ross was basically a car salesman - for Jensen Cars in Birmingham! It was a poorly run company that went "belly-up"! John Sheffield's company Norcros tried to rescue it and failed! Ian Cowper Ross then took one of their expensive cars and crashed it into a bus, just after he had crashed an expensive motorbike into a shop window!
By his own admission in his own words, Ian Cowper Ross got hold of the Jensen Car as a teen in order to "impress" teenage girls! Ian Cowper Ross knew nothing about business, or anything else that made money. But his dad was a car salesman, so Ian Cowper Ross was paraded before the press as the advertising salesman for Radio Caroline. That farce was pulled off with the help of Jocelyn Stevens of Stevens Press Ltd., who for a time appears to have had Ian Cowper Ross in his advertising department as a junior employee. How long he stayed there is at the moment, anyone's guess, but it was not for more than a few months.
The facts in evidence contradict the stories of Ian Cowper Ross.
The sports car accident caused considerable damage to the Jensen car and Ian received a broken leg. We know that the court date is true because it is preserved in contemporary press publications which were independently created at that time. Other records show that Ian Cowper Ross almost lost a foot in that car crash, and this resulted in him gaining the nickname of 'Flipper', due to his infirmity. This probably means that he did spend a considerable amount of time in hospital, as reported by the press. It is an event which Ian Cowper Ross told the court that he could not remember.
Ian Cowper Ross 'cashed-in' on his nickname of 'Flipper', when, some time later, he joined in a partnership to open a roller disco rink using that name. In 1961, at his court appearance, 18 years-old Ian Cowper Ross was given a fine and a suspended sentence that could disqualify him from driving.
Not only do we know the true identity and work place of his father, but we also know about his mother named Phyllis. She came from Weybridge, although Ian apparently was born in Chelsea during 1943. His abode at Reynards Wood is time-framed by official records concerning the property which had been part of a farm that was sub-divided by the owner.
We can find records of Charles Edward Ross' heritage going back to New Zealand where the family line is well documented, and it probably means that C.E. Ross arrived in the UK as a soldier during World War II. We also believe that we have found a record of the demise of Charles Edward Ross after episodic encounters with the law because he was charged with drunk driving, after which he appears to have died intestate. So much for the claims about him being a "well known City financier". He seems to have become a locally well known drunk driver who ended up in court, and his son Ian followed on as a teen - like father, like son.
In any event, the line being drawn to Ian's father is for the purpose of misdirection, because there are two other lines which direct to Ian's in-laws whose pedigrees and involvement with Ian is quite involved. We will explain all of that in context, in due course. But what all of this means, is that without another explanation by us, the financing and creation of Radio Caroline remains a total mystery.
[We will continue reassembling Part 1 into three sections with Part 1c to follow.]