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Radio Expres Remembers Its Launch

Organizes special broadcast in Antwerp to celebrate its beginning in 1982

Event organizer Marc D’Hollander (left) and veteran DJ Guy Van Antwerpen in the live studio, using Radiohost playout software.

On March 18, an eight-hour live broadcast in Belgium on 107.4 FM commemorated the 35th anniversary of the launch of Radio Expres.

In 1982, the station launched as a city radio station for the Antwerp, Belgium, area. Radio Expres also pioneered a full-fledged news and sports team and rapidly became the city’s major independent commercial station.

“We were the first to bring commercial radio out in the open, in the prestigious Boerentoren Shopping Mall, in the center of town, where we had a shopping site for our studios,” said Michel Van der Auwera, one of the station’s early presenters.

“Beginning in the 1990s, with the expansion of public broadcaster VRT’s radio channels, we suffered from the competition and decided to call it a day in 1997, some 20 years ago.” On the occasion of the special anniversary, the station’s founders invited former technical and on-air staff to commemorate Radio Expres.

A temporary studio, located on the first floor of a popular Antwerp café, Den Engel, broadcast live interviews and 1980 and 1990s music on a frequency “borrowed” from Antwerp station Family Radio.

Some 60 former collaborators attended the event, many of them still active in national or commercial radio, press and media.