TO    BE     FREE

To be free
Nigel "It is exactly six years today since our broadcasts started from this boat. 25 years on the air, six years on this boat and they've now illegally boarded us in international waters and have every intention of towing the vessel away." Chris "So if there is anybody out there at all who can perhaps offer us some assistance, whatever that might be, please, please, please, please try. It's coming up to one minute before one o'clock. We have just about everybody associated with the radio station in the studio. We have Caroline Martin who's beside me not looking too well." The Caroline theme was once again repeated and was followed by the Loving Awareness band with Love you to know. Chris "A good question, do you know what it's like to be free. Over the years since Easter Sunday 1964, we have known what it's like to be free and the only trouble about freedom is that it scares a lot of people, particularly people themselves who are not free and when they see freedom the only thing they can think of to do is to try and stamp it out and Radio Caroline refuses to be stamped out." Neil "The 19th August 1989 is the day the UK, Great Britain became a totalitarian state." Bruce "As it stands the gentleman are going to remove the transmitter from the ship and take a few other things as well. What they have just told us, is that we are free to go back to Holland with them, where there will be no more charges pressed. We will also be able to go back to England and there will be no charges pressed there. Alternatively we can stay on the Ross Revenge. Would you like to say anything Sir, before we go off." Obviously the member of the boarding party didn't want to say anything, as Radio Caroline 558 abruptly left the air at that moment, at 13.07 on Saturday 19th August 1989. 

Surveillance
The Dutch action against the Ross Revenge had been planned for some months during a campaign that had included surveillance of those allegedly concerned with the offshore stations, telephone tapping and spy boats. The Volans, a Dutch Ministry of Works tug contained a boarding party of around 30 armed officials. They removed all the studio equipment, records and tapes and took down the aerial array but left the towers and the new mast sections awaiting erection, although at one stage it appeared that they would cut down the towers. The new insulators were removed from the Ross Revenge and roughly thrown onto the deck of the Volans, causing them to smash.

In the news
UK radio and TV reported the raid during the afternoon and evening. ITN news included Caroline's founder Ronan O'Rahilly, who denied Dutch claims that they were acting within international law, saying. "Every captain on every ship all over the world would know they're talking absolute nonsense. If you board a ship in International waters, you're committing an act of piracy, there is no question about that". Following the arrival of a boat bringing out British press, the Volans left shortly after 2000 on Saturday evening, taking away equipment from the Ross Revenge and the Dutch deejays from Radio 819. The British DTI officials who had been aboard the Ross Revenge, trying to question staff, also hurriedly left. One of them, Mr. James Murphy was in such a rush to leave, he even left his spectacles behind.

Raid

Neil Gates

Neil Gates

Chris Kennedy

Chris Kennedy

Raid

 

 

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Chris Kennedy

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